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06/11/2013 23:20
MACERATA wins big game with titleholders Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK
2014 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League - Men

Macerata, Italy, November 6, 2013. On Wednesday Italy’s Lube Banca Marche MACERATA edged the defending champions Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK 3:2 (25-19, 22-25, 29-27, 22-25, and 15-12) thereby confirming its leadership in Pool E of the 2014 DenizBank CEV Volleyball Champions League – Men with three victories out of three matches. The Italians top the charts in Pool E with 8 points (3 victories, only 2 sets lost), two more than Zenit KAZAN and five ahead of NOVOSIBIRSK, which is currently ranked third after tonight’s defeat.   
In the opening set the home team dominated the scene with great serving (4 aces) and the attacks of the Serbian middle-blockers Marko Podrascanin (5 points with 100% of efficiency) and Dragan Stankovic (3 points, 67%). MACERATA opened the gap quite early in the set (15-11), and then went up to 21-17. Finally, they closed the set at 25-19 with an error by Lokomotiv opposite Pavel Moroz, who by scoring 7 points was – together with wing-spiker Lukas Divis (6 points, 75%) – the one who anchored the comeback of the Russian express in the second set (25-22).

In the third set the teams played all the time point for point up to 27-27, then Lube Banca Marche turned the situation on its own way with the great actions by their libero Hubert Henno, and the attacks of Ivan Zaytsev, who scored the last two points for the final 29-27. In the fourth set the Italians seemed to have the situation in their hands after two net violations by Lokomotiv which sent them to the front at the second technical time-out (16-13). However, NOVOSIBIRSK came back, helped by the errors of MACERATA (13), and the attacks of Moroz (best scorer of the match with 25 points), to score the final 25-22. The tie-break was nevertheless one-sided and fully controlled by the Italians with their Polish star Bartosz Kurek (21 points in the end) as the one who set the pace along the way to the final 15-12 sealed by Jiri Kovar.

“We are very happy for the victory as the result confirmed us as the leaders of the Pool” said Italian mentor Alberto Giuliani. “The CEV Volleyball Champions League is the primary target of our club this season, so we’re trying to do our best in every match to qualify to the Playoffs from this tough Pool. But nothing is decided yet, especially because we have to play two times away in Russia.”  

Click here for more info including detailed stats of the match

Click here for a video interview with Bartosz Kurek

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