Two Podium Finishes for Canada at NORCECA Event

Nov. 24, 2013

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica: Canada had two podium finishes this weekend – gold for the women and bronze for the men - at the 10th leg of the 2013 NORCECA Circuit in Costa Rica.

Kacie MacTavish and Caleigh Whitaker, both of Sharon, Ontario, won the women’s gold after beating Heather Hughes and Lane Carico (USA-A) in the final on a windy Sunday afternoon by 2-1 (21-17, 19-21, 15-11). It is the second NORCECA gold medal of the year for MacTavish and Whitaker.

“We started (in Guatemala in April) and finished the season with a gold medal. It’s an awesome feeling," said MacTavish.

“It feels great going into the off-season with a win. We learned a lot this season and it all came together in this last tournament, which is really motivating for us,” said MacTavish. “We worked super hard this year and had a lot of support, and will go into this off season with a positive attitude and confidence."

“It has been a battle and we are so happy to see our hard work pay off. I really want to thank all of our fans and supporters, and our coaches John May and Steve Anderson for their support - we would not have made it through this season without so many people behind us.”

Whitaker, who will play in final stage of the circuit in Trinidad & Tobago with Heather Bansley next week, said: “This win motivates us to continue the hard work as we lost to them in Puerto Rico. I’d like to thank Costa Rica and NORCECA for their time and effort, as well as the fans who cheered for us today.”

In the semifinals, MacTavish and Whitaker defeated Traci Daley and Allison Fleming of USA-B 21-19, 21-12, while Hughes/Carico scored a 2-0 (21-14, 21-11) victory over Karen Cope and Natalia Alfaro of Costa Rica-A. Daley and Fleming of USA-B won 2-0 (21-16, 21-15) over Costa Ricans Cope and Alfaro in the bronze medal match.

On the men’s side, Simon Fecteau-Boutin (Levis, QC) and James Battiston (Mississauga, ON) beat Montgomery/Drost of USA-B (24-22, 16-21, 15-13) for the bronze medal.

Mexico’s Lombardo Ontiveros and Juan Virgen set a new all-time NORCECA record of victories in a season by winning the men’s gold medal on Sunday. The Mexican team won a three-set battle against the USA-A team of John Hyden and Tri Bourne 21-16, 19-21, 15-12.

Josh Binstock and Sam Schachter, both of Richmond Hill, ON, finished fifth overall ; and women’s team of Victoria Altomare and Julie Gordon were sixth.

Canada is second to the USA in the women's 2013 NORCECA beach ranking, and second to Mexico in the 2013 men’s ranking.

The North, Central America and Caribbean Volleyball Confederation (NORCECA) is the continental confederation that represents 35 member countries at the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) level.

Women’s results (Nov. 24):
Semifinals: CAN-A d USA-B 2-0 (21-19, 21-12); USA-A d CRC-A 2-0 (21-14, 21-11). Bronze Medal: USA-B d CRC-A 2-0 (21-16, 21-15); Gold Medal: CAN-A d USA-A 2-1 (21-17, 19-21, 15-11).

Final positions: 1. CAN-A; 2.USA-A; 3. USA-B; 4. CRC-A; 5. MEX; 6. CAN-B (Altomare / Gordon); 7. PUR; 8. ESA; 9. CRC-C; 10. NCA; 11. TTO; 12. ISV; 13. GUA; 14. LCA; 15. HON; 16. CRC-B; 17. DOM.

Men’s results (Nov. 24):
Semifinals: USA-A d CAN-A 2-1 (21-12, 18-12, 16-14); MEX d USA-B 2-1 (17-21, 21-18, 15-9). Bronze Medal: CAN-A d USA-B 2-1 (24-22, 16-21, 15-13); Gold Medal: MEX d USA-A (21-16, 19-21, 15-12).

Final positions: 1. MEX; 2. USA-A; 3. CAN-A; 4. USA-B; 5. CAN-B (Binstock / Schachter); 6. CRC-B; 7.ESA-B; 8.NCA; 9.LCA; 10.ARU; 11.DOM; 12.ESA-A; 13.CRC-A; 14.GUA; 15. JAM.