USA destroyed Russia in straight sets (25:21, 25:17, 25:20) to finish 2-0 in the FIVB Volleyball Nations League Pool A and will meet up with Brazil in the semifinals on Saturday.
The last match in 2019 FIVB Volleyball Nations League Pool A saw hosts USA defeat last year’s tournament winners Russia, and the North Americans claimed their first victory against these opponents in the fourth encounter between the two teams in the competition.
Thomas Jaeschke was the top scorer of the match with 13 points while Fedor Voronkov scored 10 for Russia.
USA Head Coach John Speraw: “I thought we played well, so I am pleased with the way we came out and competed. We haven’t had a ton of time together with this group, so I wanted them out on the court tonight and play a little more together. I think they clicked a lot more efficiently (than Wednesday’s win over France). I loved the contribution of the players who came off the bench. I think we played a very good volleyball match.”
USA Head Coach John Speraw on playing Brazil in semifinals: “We run into Brazil a lot in these types of matches. We know each other pretty well. I think they have done a great job this summer through VNL. Obviously adding a few new pieces and Lucarelli back on the court is good to see. So I know we are in for a big battle. They were tested tonight, so they will be pretty sharp and ready for that type of volleyball match. We will have to be incredibly prepared.”
USA player Erik Shoji on playing at home: “It feels great. It is a little different as we don’t have this often. We have to kind of get used to it. But I felt we went out there and competed really hard. The crowd was great tonight and we fed off of it.”
USA player Erik Shoji: “I think it shows how close knit of a team we are. We all have played together, we are great friends on and off the court. We compete day-in, day-out together and against each other. It shows we have great depth.”
USA captain Erik Shoji on facing Brazil in the semifinals: “Brazil is No. 1 for a reason, they are always there at the end of the tournament it seems like. They are really talented. They have had a tough pool and they battled really hard, and sometimes that adversity can work in your favour. We have to be prepared for tomorrow and their A-game.”
2019 FIVB Volleyball Nations League – Semifinals on July 13:
Poland-Russia at 17.00 local time
USA-Brazil at 20.00 local time
2019 FIVB Volleyball Nations League, Final Six – Day 3:
Brazil – Iran 3-2 (25:20, 25:23, 24:26, 20:25, 15:10)
USA – Russia 3-0 (25:21, 25:17, 25:20)
Source and Photos: volleyball.world