El Salvador wins 3-1 over Panama


BELIZE CITY, Belize, August 6, 2018 - El Salvador remains undefeated yet one step closer to the podium by their 3-1 victory over Panama (25-21, 23-25, 25-14, 25-23) in the 8th game of the 20th Central American women’s volleyball championships, in Belize City.


El Salvador had the advantage: 11-8 in blocks and in serving aces: 11-5, and they gained 42 points by their opponents’ errors, which they repaid in kind with 32 errors.


But the Salvadorans’ plan to just coast through the game went out the window, when Panama toughened up in the second set: 25-23. After two blowout losses, Panama made a brave stand and won the advantage on spikes: 38-34.


Outside hitter Denisse Rogel led El Salvador’s attack with 17 points: 9 kills, 3 blocks and 5 aces. Middle blocker Tatiana Menjivar scored 14 points: 7 spikes, 4 blocks and served 3 aces. Opposite Adriana Flores scored 12 points: 11 spikes and a block.


Opposite Hashlyn Cuero led Panama with 12 points: 9 kills and 3 aces, middle blocker Anabel McKenzie scored 10 points, and outside hitter Iris Urunaga scored 8 points.


El Salvador’s coach Ingrid Rivas declared, “ we got the result we wanted: a win, but it cost us dear, more than we bargained for, because we believed the game would not be too physically demanding, and we’d get a chance to rest a little. Instead, we had to tighten up, we were almost into a fifth set! Thank God for the skills we had to prevail over our rivals. We took advantage of Panama’s deficiencies and got the win. Tomorrow we take on a much stronger team, we’ll have to be a lot more focused, because we lacked focus.”


Roxana Avalos admitted: “we knew that today’s opponent, whoever they might be, would help us advance to the podium. We all tried our best, and perhaps the previous games which were more demanding distracted us, maybe just a little bit, and we were also a bit tired, but we came through in the end!”

Panama’s coach Eliot Clarke congratulated El Salvador for having “the tenacity to exploit our errors, and to detect our weaknesses. We did not use the ball to our advantage in the second set, and they recovered well. We are a new team - it’s a work in progress, but we are in it to win it!”


Hashlyn Cuero also congratulated El Salvador on their victory: “because it was a very tough game, and to the end, we could not lock off the set, and they exploited our errors.  Panama gave a better showing today, we’ve been working on our errors. We hope to keep on improving in the future, we’re a young team, and we chalk this one up to experience.”