Cuba, St. Lucia and Canada to semifinals in Varadero

Varadero, Cuba, June 9, 2012 - Both duos of Cuba, along with St. Lucia and Canada made it to the semifinal round in the men's competition of the sixth stage of NORCECA Beach Volleyball Circuit that conclude in Varadero on Sunday.

Chiapas champions and Toluca silver medalists Karel Piña and Sergio Gonzalez will face Canada’s Nicholas del Bianco and Benjamin Chow in one of the semifinals while Yaismel Borrel and Yadrian Escobar (Cuba-2) will battle against St. Lucia’s Julian Bissette and Joseph Clercent.

After 28 qualifying matches between the 17 contestant teams on Friday and Saturday, Cuba-1 and St. Lucia arrived unbeaten with three wins each, while the other local duo and Canada 1 had four wins and one loss.

An excited Karel said he wants to battle for the gold medal this time and improve last year´s bronze here, now with new partner Sergio, who was crowned with Borrell in the 2011 edition.

"But first we must think of defeating the Canadians," Piña came forward to say, who wants like others to qualify for the Olympic Games in the Mazatlan Continental Cup, to be held in Mazatlan, Mexico from June 21 to 23.

Men’s results of Saturday: CRC-2 d CRC-1 (12-21, 21-11, 15-10), LCA d CAN-2 (21-18, 15-21, 15-12), CUB-1 d ARU-1 (21-10, 21-13), CUB-2 d NCA (21-11, 21-7), CAN- 2 d GUA (21-12, 21-9), ISV d CRC-1 (18-21, 21-11, 15-12), ESA d NCA (16-21, 21-17, 15-17), CAN-1 d ARU-1 (21-17, 20-22, 15-10), LCA d CRC-2 (21-16, 21-16), CUB-1 d CUB-2 (21-14, 21-14), CAN-1 d ESA (21-15, 21-16), CAN-2 d ISV (21-14, 21-12), CAN-1 d CRC-2 (21-19, 21-16), CUB-2 w CAN-2 (21-14, 21-14).