Canada beats Mexico and lands in final four for NORCECA Women’s Volleyball Olympic Qualifier
MORELIA, Mexico, September 30, 2015 – Canada beat Mexico 3-2 (22-25, 25-15, 25-17, 21-25, 15-8) Wednesday night to advance to the semifinals, and capture a spot in the NORCECA Women’s Olympic Qualification Tournament to be held in January (more information to be announced).
Canada fought hard in front of the partisan crowd for the dramatic five-set win over the Mexicans, and will now face the Dominican Republic in this tournament’s semis.
With a 16-3 margin in blocking, Canada dominated despite Mexico’s advantage in kills (54-48). Canada scored on 40 Mexican errors.
Canada’s top scorer was Dana Cranston with 16 points, joined by Kyla Richey and Jaimie Thilbeault with 15 points each. Mexican outside hitter Andrea Rangel led all scorers with 23 points, followed by opposite Dulce Carranza with 18 points and outside hitter Lizbeth Sainz with 10 points.
“Mexico played outstanding, they never gave up and defended very well; this is the best Mexico team I’ve seen in years,” said Canada’s captain, Brittney Page. “We focused on powering hard on our spikes to score and our passing worked out well.”
Canada’s coach Arnd Ludwig said: “It was wonderful to see the spectators supporting their team. In the beginning, the players tried to avoid errors and the match was really close, when our blocking performed better up to the half of the second set, the balance went more in our favour. Our opposite (Becky) Pavan performed very well. Our goal was to be in the pre-Olympic tournament.”
The match against the Dominican is today, Oct. 01, at 6 pm local time (7 Eastern).
Canadian Roster (name, hometown)
Janie Guimond – Bécancour, QC
Kristen Moncks – Standard, AB
Tabitha Love – Dauphin, MB
Shanice Marcelle – Victoria, BC
Kyla Richey – Robert’s Creek, BC
Dana Cranston – Fort St. John, BC
Brittney Page – Vernon, BC
Rebecca Pavan – Kitchener, ON
Jennifer Cross – Scarborough, ON
Lucy Charuk – Tsawwassen, BC
Marisa Field – Kelowna, BC
Jaimie Thibeault – Sylvan Lake, AB
Danielle Smith – Beaverlodge, AB
Megan Cyr – St. Andrews, MB
Arnd Ludwig – Head Coach
Ryan Ratushniak – Asst Coach
Byron Bahniuk – Athletic Therapist
Shane Smith – Statistician
Nichole Mailey – Team Manager
Report and photo courtesy of NORCECA