United States is Moving On to Semifinals

Nogales, Mexico, June 13, 2024. – The United States advanced to the semifinals of the Men’s U21 NORCECA Continental Championship by defeating Mexico 3-1 (25-13, 25-20, 22-25, 25-16) to claim first place in pool A in Nogales, Mexico.

United States finished pool-play undefeated at 3-0, moving directly into Saturday’s semifinals. Mexico, with a 2-1 record, will face Puerto Rico in Friday’s quarterfinals.

Mexico handed the United States its first set loss of the tournament.

USA Sean Kelly spikes

The Americans dominated in kills with 59 to Mexico’s 27, in blocks with 11 to 5, and in service points with 6 to 4. However, they gave away 38 points  on errors, compared to Mexico’s 21.

The leading scorer of the match was USA’s outside hitter Sterling Foley, who tallied 23 points on 19 attacks, one block, and 3 aces. Team captain outside hitter Sean Kelly, along with middle blocker Parker Tomkinson, each contributed 12 points.

Mexico’s top scorer was opposite hitter Cristian Cadena, who recorded 13 points from 11 attacks, one block, and an ace.


Sterling Foley, top scorer of the United States, said, “Mexico had a good run in the set we loss, about five points and we struggled with the side-out and the flow-serve; maybe what contributed to it was the noise in here, it was really loud and came a bit lower towards the end and that gave us momentum in the fourth set. We’re ready for our next opponent in the semis, we’ll rest, scout a little bit. I think our ability to pull our side out was one of our best skills, even though we weren’t passing the best we ran a system and we put the ball in play”.

Bladimir Rivera, captain of Mexico, said, “In the set we won, we maintained our serve very well, we were also effective in finishing off free balls, and we were organized in defense and blocking. I feel that’s what we lacked in the other sets. Overall, we were disorganized, didn’t block, and made mistakes in defense, while the United States adjusted well. There’s a clear lesson to be learned, and we need to take the feedback to keep improving”.