Champions League: Arcada Galati and Shakhtior achieve straight-set victories before 2nd Round rematches
C.S. Municipal Arcada Galați, Romanian titleholders, achieved a straight-set victory over Serbian team Vojvodina NS Seme Novi Sad in the first leg of the 2nd Round of the 2020 CEV Volleyball Champions League.
The team from Romania, who are experiencing their first-ever Champions League adventure, swept Serbian champions at home and gained an upper hand when it comes to progressing to the next stage: 3-0 (25:23, 25:17, 25:21). The veteran Dutch opposite Niels Klapwijk was the top scorer for in Arcada with 20 points (including 4 aces), while Aleksandar Blagojević made 17 points on the other side.
Just like Arcada, the champions of Belarus Shakhtior Soligorsk beat their rivals in the first leg in straight sets. Thanks to Maksim Shkredau (15 points, 90% attack and 5 winning blocks), they prevailed over Finnish titleholders Ford Store Levoranta Sastamala at home in Minsk. Mikko Oivanen was the top scorer for the guests with 14 points.
Janne Kangaskokko, head coach of Ford Store Levoranta Sastamala: “Despite the defeat in three sets, I think we had a good reception, defense, but lost in attack. We had a very good start to the match, but the leaders of Shakhtior were more convincing.”
Viktar Beksha, head coach of Shakhtior Soligorsk: “Ford Store Sastamala is a very strong opponent. At the start of the match in Minsk they showed how they can play. However, we managed to secure and keep the initiative. My guys acted without making any serious errors.”
Maksim Shkredau, match MVP for Shakhtior Soligorsk: “We wanted to start the Champions League successfully, but our opponents could spoil our emotions in the early stages of the match. We changed the tactics a bit, played carefully on the block and gained an all-important success.”
2020 CEV Volleyball Champions League – 2nd Round (1st leg)
Benfica Lisboa (POR) – OK Budva (MNE) 3-0 (25:15, 25:17, 25:18)
Shakhtior Soligorsk (BLR) – Ford Store Levoranta Sastamala (FIN) 3-0 (29:27, 25:22, 25:13)
C.S. Municipal Arcada Galați (ROU) – Vojvodina NS Seme Novi Sad (SRB) 3-0 (25:23, 25:17, 25:21)
Mladost Zagreb (CRO) – SK Zadruga Aich/Dob (AUT) 3-1 (22:25, 25:18, 25:21, 25:14)
Source and photos: CEV