San Juan, Puerto Rico, May 21, 2016 – Puerto Rico women’s team seems to be at the right time and in the right place as they intend to capture the last ticket to the volleyball tournament of the next Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
After subduing their main competitors for the ticket to Brazil with a 3-0 (25-17, 26-24, 25-18) victory over Colombia on Saturday, the home team only need to pass one more hurdle represented by the team of Kenya on Sunday.
“They are a dangerous team with some good jumpers and we need to establish our best defensive game against them,” said Juan Carlos Nunez on Saturday after the win against the representative of South America in the Women’s World Olympic Qualification Tournament.
“Our services carried us and we were able to neutralize (Madeleine) Montano which was part of our strategy.”
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Stephanie Enright and Karina Ocasio registered 17 and 15 points, respectively, to send the Puerto Rican to the edge of the Olympic Games. Colombia’s Amanda Coneo and Montano finished with 13 and 10.
Puerto Rico needs to win two sets on Sunday against Kenya to punch the ticket to Rio de Janeiro, but the Kenyans are thinking totally different.
The coach David Lungaho sounded optimistic after the 3-1 (25-14, 23-25, 25-14, 25-16) triumph over Algeria to put their record at 1-1.
“It is a very important win after losing in day one and now we are looking forward to win over Puerto Rico,” Lungaho said. “I know it will be tough but is not impossible.”
Mercy Moim, the captain of Kenya, promised a well focused team against Puerto Rico as they intend to be in the Olympic Games for the first time since 2000.
Bracksides Khadambi led the victory against Algeria with 23 points that included five blocks and four aces. Algeria’s Yasmine Abderrahim, who only is 17, had a tournament-high 30 points in the loss.