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Volleyball takes the court on opening day of Pacific Games competition

Team American Samoa women’s volleyball team

Honiara, SOLOMON ISLANDS — Team American Samoa’s men’s and women’s volleyball teams suffered defeats in the opening day of competition in the ongoing 17th Pacific Games in Solomon Islands.

Volleyball in this year’s Games served-off on Friday, Nov. 17, 2023 prior to the Opening Ceremony on Sunday, Nov. 19.

The teams had been practicing hard since arriving last week Tuesday night, aiming for a strong start in the competition.

However, they just could not find the momentum they needed despite strong support from the other teams whose competitions were scheduled to begin this week.

The men’s team faced off with Fiji that was out for a win after being defeated by Tahiti on the opening day of competition on Friday.

Team American Samoa men’s volleyball team. They have lost 2 games in competition, but are still fighting for some wins after problems with communicating with each other during the matches. [photo: Asi A. Fa’asau]

Mistakes early in the game saw them trail for most of the first set and the Fijians capitalized on it, easily winning the first set.

The same thing happened in the second set, which Fiji won comfortably.

American Samoa then rallied in the third set realizing that they would be shut-out if they didn’t step up their play.

It was a closely fought game as Fiji tried their best to finish off the game and record their first win of the competition.

But American Samoa was determined to win the third test and stay in the game, which they eventually did.

However, as the fourth game got underway, mistakes began to occur due to the lack of communication and Fiji recorded their first win of the competition in pool play.

According to Coach Reno Amisone, his team has what it takes to win games but they did not play together as a unit.

The women’s volleyball team started their game against Tahiti with a bang and a roar, taking the first set comfortably.

However, Tahiti came back strongly and won three straight sets to win the game.

Coach Mafutaga Taveuveiu told Samoa News that his team did what they talked about in the first set.

However, they just lost their momentum because of not communicating and they lacked mental preparation.

“But lesson learned and we’ll come back stronger,” said Coach Taveuveu.

Yesterday evening, his prediction came true as the women’s team shut out the hapless Solomon Islands team 3-0 in their second game to record their first win of the competition.

The men’s team was not so lucky in their second game against a strong Papua New Guinea side, going down 3-1.

This is their second loss in pool play.

American Samoa men’s team is in Pool B with Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Tahiti and Tuvalu.

Their next game was scheduled against Tahiti on Tuesday Nov. 21 at 7pm at Friendship Hall.

The women’s team is in Pool A with Papua New Guinea, Tahiti and Solomon Islands.

Their next game is against Papua New Guinea also scheduled on Tuesday, Nov. 21at 5pm at Friendship Hall.

Many thanks to Paramount Builders, Inc. and the ASNOC for their generous sponsorship which has made this Pacific Games report possible. Samoa News will continue to bring updates as they happen. Please keep in mind that the Solomon Islands are a day ahead, and updates are happening in real time.