Nicaragua sweeps Belize at AFECAVOL U23


GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala, September 16, 2018.- Nicaragua swept Belize 3-0 (25-16, 25-23, 25-19) on opening day of the Men’s U23 AFECAVOL Central American Championship in Teodoro Palacios Flores Gymnasium in Guatemala City.


Nicaragua’s fast game and powerful kills took Belize by surprise in the first set, taking an early 11-6 advantage. Nicaragua was a little slower in set two and three with Belize moving closer but still committing unforced errors over the net.


Nicaragua controlled the actions with 30-28 margin in spikes, 9-6 in blocks and 6-0 in aces. The winner scored on 32 opponent errors while allowing 24 points on their own errors.


Outside hitter Jonny Zeledon led Nicaragua’s attackers with 13 points including 9 kills and 3 aces, while opposite Denis Garcia chipped in with 12 points including 11 kills. Outside hitter Francis Hauze of Belize topped all scorers with 14 points. 


Nicaragua (1-0) rests on Monday and Belize (0-1) faces Honduras (1-0).


Captain Denis Garcia of Nicaragua said “while defending well we were able to control Belize’ powerful attacks, we controlled their captain with our blocks and our counterattacking was strong.


Our energy wasn’t the same in the second set after winning the first with a comfortable advantage”.


Osman Hernández Nicaragua’s head coach explained his team lacked control in the second set “they weren’t concentrated; they must learn to focus on their side and not on the referee’s calls. Our victory comes with a great attitude from the team, in addition of having Denis and Jonny, who despite of not playing to their full capacity, brought a lot to the team; our energy was crucial, my team really wants to win”.


Francis Hauze, captain of Belize said “it’s a hard beginning for our team; we didn´t set up our defense because our blocking was not reaching out to mark our respective player. If we can adjust our blocking, our defense will improve and we must be more effective in serves”.


Cuban Esmudio Limonta, coach of Belize indicated “Nicaragua knew how to stick to their game plan and played better than we did, they deserve to win. Nicaragua was fast and we lost because my boys weren’t blocking as they couldn’t read their moves. We are here to perform giving our best effort”.