September is time for continental championships. European ended and Asian are in Play-Off phase. From Monday to Saturday in Omaha, United States teams from North America and The Caribbean have their own competition.
In First Round 9 teams were divided into 3 pools. Best two winners advance to Semifinals, the worst winner and teams from second places play in Quarterfinals.
1st Round Results:
Dominican Republic – Costa Rica 3-0 (25-13 25-6 25-20)
Costa Rica –Trinidad & Tobago 2-3 (14-25 25-22 25-21 25-27 13-15)
Dominican Republic – Trinidad & Tobago 3-0 (25-13 25-20 25-13)
|2.||Trinidad & Tobago||1/1||3-5||156-177||3|
United States – Mexico 3-0 (25-12 25-9 25-11)
Mexico – Cuba 3-2 (25-18 25-23 23-25 21-25 18-16)
Cuba – United States 0-3 (9-25 13-25 12-25)
Puerto Rico – Saint Lucia 3-0 (25-9 25-15 25-12)
Canada – Saint Lucia 3-0 (25-14 25-9 25-14)
Puerto Rico – Canada 3-2 (19-25 28-26 25-23 13-25 15-8)
Cuba – Saint Lucia (loser will be 9th)
Canada – Trinidad & Tobago – Quarterfinal
Puerto Rico – Mexico – Quarterfinal
7th Place: Costa Rica – Cuba/Saint Lucia
Semifinals (Draw will be announced tomorrow): Dominican Republic, USA + Quarterfinals’ winners
In my opinion to Semifinal should advance Canada and Puerto Rico. Looking at teams’ rosters and their strength, USA and Dominican Republic should fight for title. Both American and Dominican players are leading players, especially Outside Hitters Bethania De La Cruz (DOM) and Jordan Larson-Burbach (USA). Amazing spike efficiency has American Opposite Kelly Murphy (USA). Good presents also Puerto Rico, strenghtened after Grand Prix with two important players: Outside Hitter Aurea Cruz and Libero Debora Seilhamer. The biggest disappointment of tournament is of course Cuba, team was weakened again, after Grand Prix Cuba is without most experienced Wing-Spiker, Yoana Palacio.
Tournament’s winner will play in World Grand Champions Cup in Japan at the half of November. This Championships won’t qualify any team for World Champonships in 2014 in Italy.