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Mexico wins the Women’s COCABA and qualifies for the Centrobasket

Undefeated. That’s how the Mexican Women’s Basketball Team was made with the COCABA 2022 tournament, held in Chihuahua. After five victories in five games, the ’12 Warriors’ won the gold medal and the pass to the Women’s Centrobasket, which will take place at the end of the year (in November, specifically) also in the capital of the country’s largest state. It is the fourth time that Mexico has become champion of the regional tournament in the women’s branch after 2009, 2013 and 2015.

The team commanded by Jonathan Villegas, and coordinated by Omar Quintero’s National Teams Project, had already confirmed their presence at Centrobasket since the day before, when they defeated El Salvador 60-51 in the fourth game of both quintets. In the last game, with which they secured the gold, they beat Costa Rica 48-86 to the uproar of the local public. Before, the ’12 Warriors’ had overwhelmingly accounted for Panama (41-134), Honduras (90-39) and Guatemala (60-51). All the matches of the championship, which began last Wednesday, July 27, were held at the Rodrigo M. Quevedo Gymnasium, which received 3,000 spectators for the closing night.

El Salvador and Guatemala were awarded the silver and bronze medals, respectively. The ‘cuscatletcas’ had a 4-1 mark (9 points), while the ‘chapinas’ finished with 3-2 (8 points). The Mexican quintet was the only one that did not lose a single match. The ideal team of the tournament was made up of two ‘tricolor’ players: Claudia Ramos and Gladys Ávila. They were accompanied by Hillary Martínez (El Salvador), Nelly Rapalo (Honduras) and Daniela Quesada (Costa Rica). Ramos was also named the Most Valuable Player (MVP).

Costa Rica, Honduras and Panama closed the table. The ‘ticas’ added seven points, product of two wins and three losses; the ‘catrachas’ only won one of their five matches, while the ‘canaleras’ lost in each and every one of their presentations with record figures, such as the difference of 93 points endorsed by the Villegas players in the first match of the tournament.

“They are all MVPs”

“It is the beginning of a new stage. Always winning is motivating for girls. Now we have more to work on to continue advancing in the tournaments. Thank Chihuahua, the Teporacas Club (from Chihuahua), for all the warmth to receive us. The players have heart and soul. All this is thanks to them”, said Villegas, who is also the Astros’ coach in the Women’s LNBP, after the award ceremony. Villegas, in fact, was also crowned in the national championship. “I’m very happy. It’s unreal. It is my first gold with the Mexican National Team and what better than doing it in our house. People love our sport. It feels, I realized since (I played) in the National League. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We ask you to wear the same for the Centrobasket. It’s all thanks to this group of girls, they’re all MVPs. What matters is that we take the gold in front of our people”, assured Ramos, 24 years old, the best basketball player of COCABA 2022 thanks to her general averages of 11.8 points per game and 7.6 rebounds.

Mexico will reappear in the Women’s Centrobasket after being absent from the 2021 edition, which Puerto Rico won. By 2022, in addition to the Mexicans, El Salvador and Guatemala will also be in the tournament.

last journey

In addition to the final clash between ticas and ‘tricolores’, there were three other duels that closed COCABA 2022 on Sunday, July 31: Guatemala triumphed over Honduras 79-46, while Panama lost 60-81 to El Salvador.

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