Venezuela Beats Costa Rica in Four Sets

GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala, May 29, 2024. – Venezuela beat Costa Rica 3-1 (21-25, 25-13, 25-17, 25-12) on Wednesday at the Girls U17 Pan American Cup at the Multi-sports Dome in Guatemala City.

Venezuela finished Group B with a 2-1 record, and Costa Rica with a 1-2 record. Both teams await the result between Puerto Rico, which is undefeated, and Guatemala (0-2).

Venezuela led in attack points 59 to 38 and in blocks 7 to 4. Costa Rica controlled the serves  4-2 but gave away 28 points on errors compared to 21 by Venezuela.

Isabela Sibada VEN, celebrates

Venezuela’s outside hitter Fiorellys Utrera led all scorers with 17 points on15 attacks, one block, and one ace. Also contributing to Venezuela’s victory were middle blocker Isabela Sibada with 15 points on 14 attacks and one block, and team captain Gabriela Noguera with 13 points, all on kills.

Costa Rica’s opposite Amanda Campos, was the team’s leading scorer with 13 points on 12 attacks and one block. Outside hitter Michelle Arias added 11 points on 10 attacks and one block.

In the first set, Costa Rica scored five consecutive points (6-12) and then tied at 19 with two consecutive aces from Nadia Granados. At 21 points even, Costa Rica maintained their attack to win the first set. Venezuela responded strongly, taking the next three sets, and securing their second victory in the event.

Gabriela Noguera VEN, defense

Venezuelan outside hitter Fiorellys Utrera explained that they lacked communication in the first set, but despite that, they won the following sets, “we came out strong, connected as a team, and supported each other to limit our errors”. She added that the team had a positive attitude, which was key to their victory.

Argentinian Christian López, coach of Costa Rica, expressed that his team finished pool-play  well, “we could have done better things, but the team is in a learning process”. He also said that they paid a high price for their mistakes, “It’s not possible to maintain the level of play all the time because they’re not used to it, but I think they are trying to do things very well”.