TTO beats USVI to reach semifinals


RIVIERE-SALEE, Martinique, December 9, 2019 - Trinidad and Tobago earned the second automatic semifinal spot at stake in 2019 Caribbean Zonal Volleyball Association (CAZOVA) Junior (Under-21) Men Championship with a straight sets win over US Virgin Islands.


Led by captain Joshua Persad, Trinidad and Tobago, searching for their first title at this age-group won 25-23, 25-21, 25-22 in an evenly fought match-up at La Ville Riviere-Salee Palais Des Sport, yesterday.


With the win, T&T who defeated host Martinique in four sets on Sunday night ended Pool D round-robin play with a perfect 2-0 record and joins three-time reigning champions Barbados (2-0) who downed Guadeloupe 25-14, 25-17, 25-19 earlier in the day for their second win from as many matches also, in Pool C.


On Tuesday, in Pool C, Curacao and Guadeloupe, both 0-1 play to determine second and third in their pool ahead of the quarterfinals on Wednesday while in Pool D, Martinique faces USVI with teams 0-2as well ahead of the quarterfinals on Wednesday. 


Reflecting on the encounter, USVI captain Jahmai Jones said his team was right there in all three sets b never managed to take their chances and must do better going forward.


Coach Isaac Raphael added, “It was down to simple mistakes that cost us the game and we will all take it as part of the learning experience and come back out tomorrow and do better.”


Trinidad and Tobago captain, Joshua Persaud noted that it was a real battle for his team.


“It was a real challenging game against the USVI who had a lot of vocal support as well. We are hoping to go as far as we can in the tournament.


“We have qualified to the semifinals and just have to await our next opponent and plan for that match.” 


Assistant coach, Curtis Burkette said, “It feels really good to be this USVI team. The guys put in the effort in training and this is the end result of it. We have qualified to the semifinals and hopefully we can bring home a medal."