Teams Hope to Gain Experience at Pan American Cup



RENO, USA (Aug. 11, 2015) – Seven of eight teams have arrived in Reno for the 2015 Pan American Cup. The eighth team, Venezuela, is scheduled to arrive Tuesday night to begin competition on Wednesday at the Reno Events Center.


Many of the teams competing have young players, or a mix of young and more experienced athletes.


The head coaches shared their thoughts at the start of the tournament.


U.S. head coach Jeff Nygaard

“This is our second week of being together as a team. I think we've done some great team-building. We've got guys on the team that respond really well to direction. I feel we have the potential to be a great team in this tournament. That being said, we are playing some teams that I know are extremely difficult to compete against. They play at a high energy level. They play with passion. They are physical. They are extremely disciplined and they present a lot of challenges."


Brazil first assistant coach Mauricio Paes

“With Brazil there is always a very big expectation for our performance in any tournament we go to. Here, we have our under-23 team. The tournament is very important for us. But also it is a way for us to prepare for the U23 World Championship in Dubai.”


Canada head coach Georges Laplante

“It’s a new group that trained all summer together. We haven’t competed much. We are looking forward to a good level of competition. We hope to do well in this tournament.”


Mexico head coach Juan Roberto Vilches

“I am very happy with the organization. Today we are going to work out on the competition court. There are many teams at a high level of competition. We brought a combination of young and old players. Our main objective is to maintain classification for World League.”


Argentina head coach Martin Ariel Lopez

“I would like to make the semifinals and have a good Cup. We are developing the younger players to move them up to the senior team.”


Dominican Republic head coach Jose Alvarez Cutino

“Our team is brand new. We did not bring any stars. We are preparing young players for the future. We are here looking for a spot in the World League. We are very aware of the tough competition from the other teams. I expect a very competitive event. We are here to see how we measure up against those teams with a new generation of players.”


Puerto Rico head coach Abdell Otero

“We are brought a mixed team with new guys trying to show us what they are capable of. We also brought ‘older guys’ looking for their first opportunity. Some of the  ‘old guys’ had to wait for their opportunity too. They are old guys on the team but new in playing time. We are trying to do our best to be in the first six. That is our main goal. And then anything we do is a gain for the team. We are trying to have a good Pan Am Cup. We want to take advantage of the other young teams that are here. They are young teams but good.”