United States locks semifinal spot at Pan Am Cup NORCECA Final Six

TEPIC, Nayarit, Mexico, July 15, 2022.- United States locked their semifinal spot at the Men’s Pan American Cup NORCECA Final Six beating Dominican Republic 3-0 (25-13, 25-16, 25-20) at the Amado Nervo Auditorium of Tepic, Nayarit.

The U.S. concluded the preliminary round with a 3-2 record and 17 points, finishing in third place making their way in the semifinal round where they’ll face Canada who ended in second place. Canada beat the United States in straight sets in their first match of the event.

Dominican Republic ends with 0-5 record and will play for fifth position.

The United States held an overwhelming 40-25 advantage in attacks, the also led with comfortable margins in blocks (6-1) and serves (8-1). Both teams committed a similar number of errors, the U.S. with 22 and Dominican Republic with 21.

Opposite hitter Francesco Sani of the United States scored a match-high of 15 points on 11 kills and 4 aces, followed by middle blocker Austin Wilmot with 10 points on 7 kills and 3 blocks.

Once again Henry Tapia led Dominican Republic with 11 points all on kills.

Brett Wildman (24) of USA attacks against Dominican Republic

Mathew West, Captain of United States: “We started with two defeats and now we are in the semifinals, for all of us it’s our first tournament together so we needed to get into rhythm as a team. Today the coach used a different line-up to rest some players, which is good for us, so everyone improves their level. Can we win the gold, yes, in this tournament everything is possible”.

Dawilin Méndez, Middle blocker of Dominican Republic: “We must commit less errors, some technical aspects that are easy to execute aren’t working out and that’s why matches get complicated. We are a young team, only four are veterans that support us to go on the path of good volleyball. These tournaments give us a lot of level”

Andy Read, Head Coach of United States: “At the beginning both teams were trying to find their rhythm playing, we found it first. We had a lot of guys come in, everyone played it great, so for tomorrow we have all fourteen guys ready to play and begin the play-offs. For the semifinals I hope our best volleyball in the tournament so far; it’s going to be a very good match for both of us (Canada)”.