Less than six hours before its group-play finale, the United States has clinched a spot in the Pan American Games quarterfinals thanks to Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico swept Canada 25-22, 25-17, 25-23 on Wednesday afternoon, which secured the U.S. Men’s Volleyball Pan American Games Team a top-three finish in Group B and a quarterfinals berth.
The United States (1-1, 1-1 Group B, 5 pts.) entered the final day of the three-match group-play round in second place in its four-team group after losing to Canada on Tuesday.
The first-place team in each of the two groups at the Pan American Games will receive a bye to the semifinals of the international tournament, while the second and place teams will compete in the quarterfinals.
Canada (1-2, 1-2 Group B, 3 pts.) despite upsetting the United States was eliminated from medal contention and finished Group B in last place with its loss to Puerto Rico. The victory temporarily moves Puerto Rico (1-2, 1-2 Group B, 7 pts.) ahead of the United States and into second place prior to the start of the Brazil-United States group-play match later tonight.
The United States will need to defeat Brazil (2-0, 2-0 Group B, 10 pts.) or lose in five games to finish Group B in second place. In addition, the United States still can win the group and receive the bye to the semifinals if it sweeps Brazil.
The Brazil-United States match will begin at 8 p.m. (9 p.m. EST) and be nationally televised on ESPN2.