Natalia Martinez, currently one of the most talented youth Dominican players, has just signed a contract with Brazil’s Curitibano Vôlei, which is at present fighting for promotion in Superliga B, according to Voleibol.pe
Martinez is still only 17 years of age. In her short career, she amassed many impressive feats, such as her MVP award the 2015 NORCECA U18 Championship when she was only 14 years old, being called upon to participate in the 2012 FIVB U20 World Championship when she was only 12, and participating in the 2015 FIVB Club WCH when she was only 15. Most recently she won a gold medal at the 2015 FIVB U20 World Championship and a silver in the 2017 FIVB U18 World Championship.
Martinez will be joining a Curitibano team that has in its rosters a player from Brazil’s 2008 Olympic gold medal squad, Valeska Menezes. In addition, the team has as one of its godfathers the famous Brazilian player Giba (Gilberto Filho), a gold medalist in 2004.
The team is currently 2-1 in the competition and is considered one of the favorites to gain promotion into Superliga. Its biggest rival is the still unbeaten Vôlei Londrina, which is composed mostly of players from the now extinct Superliga team Rio do Sul, which folded due to financial reasons only weeks before the competition started.
Curitibano lost its chance at a promotion to Superliga last year when it lost its Superliga B finals match against José Roberto Guimarães Hinode/Barueri.