TIJUANA, México, August 14, 2014.- Cuba beat Venezuela and advanced to the semifinals after a five setter victory (23-25, 25-20, 25-26, 29-31, 15-6).
Javier Jimenez Scull, Rolando Cepeda and Osmani Uriarte, finished as top scorers for Cuba, as well as David Fiel and Isbel Mesa. Jiménez tallied 20 points, while Cepeda closed with 18. Fiel registered 15 and I Mesa 11.
For Venezuela, Kervin Pinerua leaded the attack with 23 points and also served four aces. Jesus Chourio closed 12 and a couple of aces, while Hector Salerno closed with 11.
Venezuela missed a service in the last set, while Cuba adjusted the blocking strategy. However Cuba also missed one service and failed in a reception play that gave the advantage to the South American squad. “We suffered a lot in this match, but we won in the end. That was the most important thing. We have won matches in five sets with a young squad, with some mistakes, but I think as long as we move on, we can solve that,” Cuban coach Rodolfo Luis Sanchez, stated.
“It was a good match, we started pretty well in the first set, but in the second and third the ball was on one side and another. We made serving mistakes and in many fundamentals. We won the fourth set with the heart, but after that there was nothing else,” said Venezuela’s coach Vincenzo Nacci.
“I think we could not block enough, but Cuba is a very strong team on the attack, and defending the ball. After that, there were some good moments but we began to get tired and could not get into rhythm”, Venezuelan captain Kervin Pinerua indicated.
“It was a good match. Venezuela was very strong in first and fourth sets. We worked hard on attack and service power to close with a win. Now we are ready to achieve a new goal, that is to win the championship as well as we remain in the World League,” Cuban captain Rolando Cepeda concluded.