Puerto Rico remains unbeaten after a straight set win against Nicaragua

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, November 22, 2023. – Puerto Rico defeated Nicaragua 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-17) to remain undefeated in the first edition of the NORCECA Girls’ U17 Championship at the Jorge Galeano Gymnasium in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

The event, taking place from November 21 to 26, grants three berths for the 2024 FIVB World Championship.

Puerto Rico maintains an undefeated 2-0 record in Pool A and will finish the preliminary round on Thursday against the hosts Honduras. Nicaragua holds a 1-1 record and will face Mexico to advance to the next round.

After a strong start in the first set, Nicaragua surprised Puerto Rico with effective blocks, jumping to a four-point advantage (13-9) in the second set. Puerto Rico regrouped, took better control of the game, and closed it in three straight sets.

Puerto Rico celebrates

Puerto Rico dominated every skill of the game, kills (40-22), blocks (9-7), and aces (10-6); in addition to committing one less error (15-16) than Nicaragua.

Puerto Rico’s top scorers were Sara Lozano with 18 points on 17 kills and point from serves, Diangelie González with 10 points on 5 kills, 4 blocks, and one ace, and Kaila Alvarado with 9 points from attacks.

Keyling Olivas and Francehsca Viera, each with 9 points, were the top scorers for Nicaragua.

Sara Lozano from Puerto Rico said, “In the second set when Nicaragua took the lead, we had to communicate better to regain our game rhythm. I believe our unity has been crucial to staying undefeated. We will give our all to win tomorrow and finish with a strong attack”.

Keyling Olivas from Nicaragua mentioned, “We needed to be more effective in reception to maintain the advantage we had in the second set. We got a bit discouraged. We hope to advance to the next round”.