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Nicolás Mendez spiking against Venezuela

Uberlandia, Brazil, October 12, 2013 - Venezuela won their first 5th-8th classification match at the Men's U23 World Championship with a 3-0 (21-18, 21-14, 21-14) victory against Argentina on the penultimate day of comeptition at the Arena Presidente Tancredo Neves.

Venezuela took the first set after getting into a good early lead thanks to wing spiker Jhoser Contreras' net blocks on tournament top scorer Pablo Kukartsev of Argentina. Venezuela's play got messy towards the end of the set and allowed Argentina to close the gap, but two strong spikes from wing spiker Hector Salerno sealed the set 21-18.

The start of the second set followed a similar pattern, with Venezuela getting into a lead, built on some strong serving and Argentina errors, that saw them 12-3 ahead at the technical timeout. Argentina coach Alejandro Grossi switched almost his entire line-up, leaving only middle blocker Ivan Postemsky on court, in the hope of changing the momentum, but Venezuela turned their advantage into a 21-14 set win.

The lead changed hands a few times at the start of the third set, but Venezuela captain Kervin Martin Pinerua Urbina led his team with a superb all-round display of attack, defence and serving that gave his team a three-point lead at the technial timeout which they increased for a 21-14 set win.

Pinerua Urbina was Venezuela's top scorer with 19 points, but was assisted well by Salerno (8) and Contreras who lead his team's net defence with three blocking points out of nine in total.

After entering the match in the second set, opposite Gustavo Vaca Alvarez finished as Argentina's top scorer with eight points.

On the final day of the tournament Venezuela will now play for 5th-6th place against the winner of the Iran v Tunisia match, while Argentina will play for 7th-8th place against the loser of that match.

Press Conference:

Tomas Ruiz, Argentina player: "We were crushed after yesterday's defeat against Bulgaria. It was a very hard one to take for us. We had confidence in ourselves as a team and we couldn't make it. Venezuela entered the court with a great spirit and we are still struggling to recover."

Kervin Martin Piñerua Urbina, Venezuela captain: "This was a perfect game. We performed in an excellent way on court. Argentina is our team to beat since forever, that's why we fought since the beginning. The entire team was focused in winning, the attitude was the best. Now we want another rematch, against Iran."

Statistics: P2 | Photos: FeVA - FIVB