Americans down D. Republic

RALSTON, Neb. -- The U.S. women's volleyball team defeated the Dominican Republic, 25-19, 26-24, 21-25, 25-19 on Saturday to win the NORCECA championship.

The victory in the biennial tournament earns the U.S. women an automatic berth in the FIVB Grand Champions Cup in Japan from Nov. 12-17. It was the team's second straight continental championship and seventh overall.

Kelly Murphy led the United States with 18 points and Jordan Larson-Burbach, a native Nebraskan, had 15 points in the final match at the Ralston Arena.

Bethania de La Cruz had a match-high 23 points for the Dominican Republic.

Puerto Rico claimed the bronze medal by defeating Canada 25-23, 25-16, 25-16 earlier in the day.