Canadians rebound with impressive win at Junior Pan Am Cup

PANAMA CITY – Bradley Kufske of Abbotsford, B.C., scored 18 points to lead Canada to its first victory in round robin play at the Junior Pan Am Cup men’s volleyball tournament on Thursday.

The Canadians defeated Mexico 25-16, 25-22, 20-25, 25-20 to even their record at one win and one loss. Chile defeated Puerto Rico in straight games to grab top spot in Group B at 2-0 while Canada and Puerto Rico are 1-1 and Mexico is 0-2.

Three other Canadians scored 12 points each. Lucas Van Berkel of Edmonton who registered six of his points on blocks and added two service aces, as well as Daniel Moreau and Nicholas Hoag, both of Sherbrooke, Que.

The Canadians conclude the round robin Friday against Puerto Rico. The top team in each Group gets a bye to the semifinals while second and third place must play a quarterfinal on Saturday. The semis are Sunday and the placement matches 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