COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 22, 2017) – The U.S. Girls Youth Sitting Volleyball Team suffered its first loss of the 2017 Youth Parapan American Games, falling to Brazil 25-10, 25-19 on Wednesday in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Brazil went on to also win the bonus third set, 25-17.
Brazil jumped out to an early lead in the first set, and pull away quickly to take it. The main difference was the serving game as Brazil earned a 7-2 ace and 9-3 kill advantage in the set.
In set 2, the U.S. fought back behind Team Captain Alyssa Cleland, who led her squad with four aces in the set. In the end, Brazil overpowered the U.S. at the net and won the match.
“We seemed to come out a little tentative today, unsure if we had it within ourselves to win,” U.S. Head Coach Elliot Blake said. “Brazil’s Duda Dias is a highly skilled player who was on their Paralympic team and she certainly can control the match if given the opportunity.”
“It was disappointing for us to not be able to get a rhythm going against Brazil,” Cleland said. “Although we were able to pick up our game in set 2, it still wasn’t to the level we know we are capable of playing, and we will be ready when we face them again tomorrow.”
The U.S. Girls Sitting Team will play their final two pool play matches on Thursday against Venezuela (1 p.m. local) and Brazil (5:30 p.m. local). The top two teams in the pool will play for the gold medal on Friday at 1:30 p.m. local time.
“We came to the Games to learn since we’ve never fielded a youth sitting team before and never competed in a 3-versus-3 competition format,” Blake said. “I am certainly happy to see the progress the girls continue to make in implementing our system of play. They are willing to adjust their game as we discover new tendencies.”
U.S. Roster for Youth Parapan American Games
Alyssa Cleland (Edmond, Okla.)
Annie Flood (Salem, Ore.)
Autum Reagan (Wellington, Kan.)
Nina McVay (Mooresville, N.C.)
Head Coach: Elliot Blake
Athletic Trainer: Lauren Chamness
Competition Schedule (All times local)
Brazil def. Venezuela, 3-0
USA def. Venezuela, 2-1
Brazil def. USA, 3-0
5:30 p.m. Venezuela v Brazil
1 p.m. Venezuela v USA
5:30 p.m. Brazil v USA
1:30 p.m. Final, No. 1 v No. 2