Asterix Avo BEVEREN claim home round of Challenge Cup 8th Finals
2017 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup - Women
Beveren, Belgium, January 25, 2017. Belgium’s Asterix Avo BEVEREN claimed on Wednesday night the first round of their tie with Hungary’s Vasas Obuda BUDAPEST (25-22, 25-17, 18-25, 25-20) on schedule for the 8th Finals of the 2017 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup – Women.
The match started with a minute’s silence to pay tribute to the memory of the late Secretary General of the Royal Belgian Volleyball Federation, Mr Albert Daffe, who had passed away on Sunday, as well as to the victims of a horrific bus accident that took the lives of 16 Hungarian young students in Verona, Italy.
Vasas Obuda BUDAPEST rushed to a 6-2 lead in the opening set but after that, the visitors started making mistakes; with the help of the only 17-year-old Justine D’Hondt, BEVEREN edged ahead at 21-20 and eventually took the first set 25-22. The hosts played much better in the second set and claimed an early 7-3 lead. However, the American spiker of Vasas Obuda, Emily Morgan Sklar, stepped up her efforts to close in within three points at 16-13. Asterix Avo BEVEREN responded with good serving and eventually won the second set as well with Celine Van Gestel being just outstanding at this stage of the match.
The third set turned into a make-or-break bout for Vasas Obuda. Their setter Eleni Kountoura played extremely well and paved the way towards a 17-13 lead. The still injured captain of the Belgian team, Sarah Smits, replaced D’Hondt in defence but the visitors emerged victorious in the end (25-18) after a yellow card given to BEVEREN head coach Gert Vande Broek.
Nathalie Lemmens contributed to a 15-11 lead for BEVEREN in the fourth set but Vasas Obuda fought back to make it 16-15 at the second technical time-out. At this point, young Yellow Tiger Britt Herbots went to serve and she moved the score from 18-16 to 23-16, thus breaking Vasas Obuda’s resistance with the Belgians cashing the last point on a service error made by their opponents (25-20).
The return match will take place on February 7 in the Hungarian capital.
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