Honduras remains undefeated against a determined Panama


MANAGUA, Nicaragua, September 9, 2023 - Honduras had to push themselves to the limit to overcome Panama 3-0 (25-23, 25-23, 28-26) on the fourth day of the XXII AFECAVOL Women’s Central American Cup.


Honduras, with a 3-0 win-loss record started each set coming from behind. In the second set, Honduras bounced back from a 15-20 deficit with an eight-point streak that Panama couldn’t control. Panama couldn’t finish strong, and their opponents capitalized on the experience of their players to win the match.


In the third set, Panama had two set points, but Honduras responded with strong defense and attacks from one of their best players, Ana Gabriela Marcelín, who finished with 17 points, including four blocks, and Cecille Johnson with 10. For Panama, Hashlyn Cuero scored 11 points.


Panama outperformed Honduras in attacks 32-20 and service points 9-7 but was down 3-7 in blocks, however, Panama committed 34 unforced errors compared to Honduras’ 28.


On Sunday, Panama faces Costa Rica at 1:30 p.m., and Honduras takes on Belize at 4:00 p.m.






Marcos Sugiyama, coach of Honduras: “Panama’s approach is very strong, and we let our guard down, which is something we cannot do. We were playing at a high level of volleyball, and we let our guard down, which caused us many problems. It’s necessary to fight, despite fatigue, and we got the victory. Tomorrow, we face another battle, and the truth is that every day feels like a final. The girls’ reaction today was good because it's not easy to always play from behind on the scoreboard and come back to win”.


Andrea Zuñiga, libero of Honduras: “I think we came in a bit overconfident; it was noticeable that Panama was eager to win. They played a great game, defending and attacking everything. I think it was a very tough game, and I felt bad at one point due to the heat and pressure, but my teammate came in and did a great job as well. Today’s lesson was not to be overconfident and not underestimate any team”.