Updated: Brazil downs Argentina to win Pan Am Cup

Brazil celebrates with some of their fans at the Langley Events Centre on Sept. 30 after winning the inaugural U23 men
Brazil celebrates with some of their fans at the Langley Events Centre on Sept. 30 after winning the inaugural U23 men's volleyball Pan Am Cup. Brazil won in straight sets over Argentina.
— image credit: Gary Ahuja/Langley Times

Buoyed by a loud and boisterous group of supporters, Brazil won the gold medal at the men’s U23 Pan American Cup.

The Brazilian volleyball side made quick work of Argentina 3-0 (25-18,25-13,25-18) on Sunday at the Langley Events Centre.

“I am very glad for the win,” said Brazilian captain Thiago Veloso.

“We finished with a gold medal, but not everything has been done yet for us because we must be focused on winning the South American world championship qualification tournament.”

Henrique Batagim scored 16 points for the victors while Gonzalo Lapera finished with 10 for Argentina. Leandro Santos led Brazil with four blocks in the final.

Brazilian libero Rogerio Carvalho Filho cleaned up during the awards ceremony, collecting the most valuable player award, as well as being named the tournament’s best digger, best receiver and best libero.

“This tournament was very good for us, and these awards are just a consequence of hard work and the team’s effort,” he said.

Other award winners were Batagim (best spiker), Argentina’s Gonzalo Lapera (best server and best scorer) and Fernando Arpajou (best setter).

For Canada, Dan Jansen Van Doorn was named the best blocker at the Pan Am Cup.

The Langley Christian alum and fifth-year Spartan finished with 0.95 blocks per set.

Canada, which was represented by the Trinity Western Spartans, finished fourth after losing the bronze medal game 3-0 (25-23,25-15,25-23) to the Dominican Republic on Sunday. Mexico placed fifth.

During the round robin, the Spartans beat the Dominican Republic 3-0 (25-18,27-25,27-25).

“It’s really hard to beat a good volleyball team twice in a row and we saw that tonight,” said Spartans coach Ben Josephson.

“The first night (during the round robin) we got a win and probably surprised them, but over the last few days, they watched us and prepared for us and cleaned up some of the things we did well in the first match.”

The Spartans went 2-2 in the round robin as they also beat Mexico 3-2 (20-25,24-26,25-18,25-13,15-13) on the opening day.

They lost to Brazil 3-2 (25-19,25-15,21-25,24-26,16-14) and to Argentina 3-0 (26-24,25-15,25-23).

The two sets Brazil dropped against the Spartans were the only ones they lost over the tournament’s five games, going 15-2.

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