Special to The Sun
Both United States sitting volleyball teams were victorious on the first day of the 2013 ParaVolley Pan American Sitting Volleyball Zonal Championships, hosted at the University of Central Oklahoma Wellness Center.
The men’s squad swept Canada in the lone morning match, winning 25-19, 25-21, 25-14. The women’s team defeated Brazil 3-1, winning the first set 26-24, dropping the second 17-25 and closing with two victories, 25-15 and 25-17.
“Anytime you can get two wins, it’s a good day,” said Bill Hamiter, men’s and women’s national sitting team head coach.
“I thought the men played well and we improved on our passing. On the women’s side, we struggled early, but that team is full of competitors and after the first two sets, we came out and took care of business.”
Eric Duda led the U.S. men with 14 points. J. Dee Marinko and Edgar Laforest chipped in nine points each.
The U.S. women got 13 points from Katie Holloway and 12 from Heather Erickson in the win.
Brazil swept Canada in the men’s afternoon match, winning 25-16, 15-17, 25-15.
Pool play continues on the men’s side Friday, beginning with the U.S. and Brazil at 9 a.m. The women continue their three-game series with Brazil at 11 a.m. The men’s semifinal will follow at 3 p.m.
Central is an official U.S. Olympic and Paralympic training site, hosting the men’s and women’s sitting volleyball teams. Athletes can train for Olympic volleyball and any Paralympic sport at the university. Currently, Central hosts resident athletes in the Paralympic sports of sitting volleyball, archery, track and field and powerlifting and the Olympic sport of taekwondo.
FOR MORE information on Central’s Olympic and Paralympic programs, visit www.ucotrainingsite.com. For more information about events and the U.S. Paralympic teams, visit www.usparalympics.com.