Canada shows it means business in quarterfinal win at Junior Pan Am Cup

PANAMA CITYCanada’s national junior team shifted into high gear on Saturday at the Junior Pan Am Cup men’s volleyball tournament thumping the Dominican Republic 25-17, 25-14, 25-16 in quarterfinal action.

With the victory Canada advances to a semifinal match-up with Chile on Sunday. The Canadians had finished third in their group in round robin play with a 1-2 record but showed Saturday they are saving their best for the crucial playoff matches.

Nicholas Hoag of Sherbrooke, Que., led Canada with 14 points which included two service aces. Bradley Kufske of Abbotsford, B.C., added nine points and Tristan Aubry of Edmonton eight including three on blocks.

In the other quarterfinal, Puerto Rico hammered Panama 25-14, 25-14, 25-17 and face Chile in Sunday’s other semi. The championship match is scheduled for Monday.

The men’s national junior volleyball team sorted by province:

Alberta: Tristan Aubry, Edmonton; Jay Olmstead, Edmonton; Lucas VanBerkel, Edmonton; Branden Schmidt, Winton; Jarron Mueller, Calgary.

B.C.: Alex Davis, White Rock; Bradley Kufske, Abbotsford; Derek Thiessen, Coquitlam.

Manitoba: Brett Wiess, Winnipeg.

Ontario: Tyler (TJ) Sanders, London.

Quebec: Nicholas Hoag, Sherbrooke; Daniel Moreau, Sherbrooke; Tommy Bélisle, Quebec City.

Saskatchewan: Braden McLean, Birch Hills.

Head coach: Georges Laplante, Montreal

Assistant coaches: Greg Barthel, Regina and Brad Poplawski, Edmonton.

More information: www.volleyball.ca and www.norceca.org