Back News




Guatemala defeated Costa Rica to claim first win


PINAR DEL RÍO, Cuba, June 8, 2018.- Guatemala defeated Costa Rica 3-1 (22-25, 25-15, 25-15, 25-17) to claim their first victory at the NORCECA Men’s Challenger Cup which grants a ticket for the winner to the World Final qualifier towards the FIVB League of Nations 2019.


It was a game of similar level and physical, but the Guatemalans overcame their bad start after bringing out their better experience and the status of champion of Central America 2017 and as one of the eight classified to the Central American and Caribbean Games Barranquilla 2018.


Guatemalan wing spiker Carlos Lopez topscored the match with 23 points, followed by his teammates Wagner Chacón (12) and middle blocker Brandon Chinchilla (11). For their opponents the only one with double digits was the opposite Gilberth Solano (15).


The Cuban Reider Lucas Mora, coach of Guatemala, said that "we were not very happy although we lost against the strongest at this Cup, Cuba and Puerto Rico, but the performance of my boys had not been the best, they can still give more. Also three fundamental players could not come, Leonardo Blanco, Erick Flores, and captain Gerardo Gonzalez. Nevertheless we want to achieve our goals with those here and tomorrow end up high against the Trinidadians"


Lopez, Guatemalan captain, said that "in the initial set we lacked concentration, but we made several changes to adjust and when we entered the next one we recovered and maintained the rhythm to win. Our goal at this tournament is to prepare us for Barranquilla".


Costa Rican leader Andrés Araya pointed out that "although we have a short process of preparation and this almost entirely a new selection, but our general feeling is one of joy, we showed in the first set that we can achieve more because we resisted Guatemala consolidated by its experience.”


Another Cuban, José Enrique Pavón, director of the Costa Rican national team, said that "they are two teams with a fairly even level, but our rivals have a lot of work and know what to do in each moment and especially the desire to win after they lost the first set, that gave them the victory because we started well, but the push by them was fundamental and defined the outcome".


On Saturday Guatemala will face Trinidad and Tobago from 3:30 pm local time, and Costa Rica will meet Cuba starting at 6:30 pm.