PONCE, Puerto Rico (August 5, 2023).- The coaches of the National Teams agreed that participating in the XX Women Volleyball Pan American Cup is very important for the pending competitions for the rest of the year.
The tournament will grant two spaces for the NORCECA teams to the XIX Pan American Games in Santiago 2023, that will take place from October 20 to November 5. These two teams will complete the list of four representatives of the NORCECA Confederation in the Pan American Games, the Dominican Republic and Mexico are already classified.
The current champion Dominican Republic, winner of the last two editions (2021, 2022) with a total of six titles, along with Canada, Costa Rica, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the United States, represent the NORCECA Volleyball Confederation. And Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Peru are the teams that represent the South American Volleyball Confederation.
In the history of the event, the United States has won the tournament seven times, followed by the Dominican Republic with six gold medals, Cuba with four and Brazil with three.
Without Cuba and Suriname, the teams were divided into two groups, in Group A are Canada, Colombia, Peru, the United States and Costa Rica. In Group B will play Argentina, Chile, Dominican Republic, Mexico and Puerto Rico.
The first place of each group will advance directly to the semifinals.
Nicola Negro, Coach of Mexico: “We came to this competition with a small team. It is a very articulated competition, with many games, and that will help us to have a better result”.
Francisco Manuel Hervas, coach of Peru: It’s a very beneficial tournament for us because it’s the first tournament we’ve played this year with the Senior team, and it puts us at the gates of the South American Championship (August) and the Olympic qualifiers (September). This tournament is very important for us to see how the team is facing these two official FIVB tournaments with great weight in our planning.
Alejandro Marín Hormazábal, Coach of Chile: “It is very important to be here after 2017, which was our last participation in this competition. Today we are lucky to compete with world-class teams, with teams that come from the Olympic Games and VNL. They are world-class teams and it will help us a lot to prepare for the 2023 Pan American Games”.
Marcos Kwiek, Coach of the Dominican Republic: “It is an important competition for us because it is prior to the Continental Championship and the Olympic qualifier. This tournament contributes a lot to gain game rhythm and experience; and it is a good opportunity for other players to enter the court and gain that experience, which we are going to need. We are 100% focused. All games are important. We have to win”.
Antonio Rizola Neto, Coach of Colombia: “It is a tournament that we respect a lot and we are careful to present ourselves well. Last year we finished in third position, and we hope to improve on that ranking. This is the last tournament before the South American Championship, and it is followed by the Olympic qualification. They are two very important competitions and I come to seek experience for my team, which is very different from last year”.
Fernando Morales, Coach of Puerto Rico: “Our goal is to qualify for the Pan American Games. We know we are at home and we want to give our people a good show. We come from two good tournaments (Final Four and Central American and Caribbean Games), and we know that this tournament is of a higher level and we want to expose our players at this level, and that they continue to have good results. We want to start the second cycle of the year on the right foot”.
Pablo Acuña, Coach of Costa Rica: “Being here is very important for us because in a month we will be in the Central American Cup, which is our main competition and our goal is to win first place. The Pan American Cup allows us to concentrate the team and prepare with high-level rivals. The players are very excited to be able to compete. We hope to improve game by game”.
Shannon Winzer, Coach of Canada: “I think this is a really good opportunity for, you know, some of our senior A team to who maybe didn’t play as much at VNL. And for some of our younger players who are trying to push into the senior A team, we’ve got a really important end of summer with NORCECA Championships being hosted in Canada and with Olympic qualifiers in China. So this is very much a part of our preparation. We’ve come with the what I think is a really strong team and we’re we’re 100% trying to win this competition. Anytime you play in your region, you wanna do a good job”.
Daniel Jorge Castellani, Coach of Argentina: “It is a very important tournament for us. We played some friendly matches in Argentina before arriving. This tournament has a higher level, and, in the programming, it is a tournament that will give us competition and feedback, to continue growing for the South American Championship and Olympic qualifiers. We never have expectations. We always go out to play 100%, to give our best, and to be prepared for whatever arises on the field of play”.
Brad Rostratter, Coach of USA: “We have a really exciting team. We have a mixture of girls who have played a lot with the USA jersey and logo on the jersey and we also have some girls will be their first time wearing the jersey and representing our country, and some of them are fresh and out of college and some of them have been playing pro for a few years and have been able to get an opportunity to represent our country. So, it’s a really exciting mix of young and experienced athletes. Our expectation is to really grow throughout this next month that we’re together. We’ve had two weeks of training and now we’ll be on the road for a month with this tournament here and then the Final Six afterwards. So, the expectation for us is just keep going. Getting better and obviously compete for every single point in every single match and see where that gets us”.