Arubans crush our spirits

Aruba continues to be a thorn in the side of Cayman Islands volleyball. 

The Dutch nation would defeat Cayman 3-0 (25-18, 25-11, 25-13) in the third place playoff game at the North, Central America and Caribbean Volleyball Confederation Group E First Round Tournament of the 2014 Fédération Internationale de Volleyball Women’s World Championship. 

With the victory, Aruba clinches a spot in the second round of qualifying next year. Joining them would be tournament winners Jamaica, who went undefeated in four games and Barbados. During the competition, all of those nations would defeat Cayman in straight sets, with Jamaica winning 25-7, 25-15, 25-14, Barbados cruising 25-11, 25-8, 25-6 and Aruba pushing ahead 25-8, 25-12, 25-21. 

Matches took place at the University of Technology Auditorium in Kingston, Jamaica. Heading into the tournament, Jamaica and Barbados were seeded 12th and 13th in the NORCECA rankings while Aruba and Cayman shared the 30th position. 

Cayman reportedly fielded a young and inexperienced squad with some ladies from the youth ranks. The team captain was a relative unknown in Anita Lansdell, the top player was Chante Smith-Johnson, 15 and the head coach was Keith Higgins. 

The Jamaica tournament marks the second time in two months that Aruba defeated Cayman in world championship qualifying. Back in early October, the Papamiento crew edged out the men’s team at the Clifton Hunter High School Sports Centre in Frank Sound. 

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