Serbia and Poland fail to make semis at Girls' U18 Worlds
News from the FIVB
Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, August 2, 2013. Dark horses and World No. 10 Peru made it through the 1/4 finals and joined three Volleyball heavyweights at 2013 FIVB Girls’ U18 World Championship as they featured their first semifinal appearance since 20 years along with Asian giants and World No. 1 China, No. 2 Brazil and No 5 USA following the thrilling quarterfinal show in Nakhon Ratchasima on Friday. Brazil will battle it out against USA and China line up against Peru in the semifinal showpiece on Saturday.
World No. 10 Peru pulled off one of the biggest wins in their history by beating world No. 7 Serbia for the first time ever in a five set thriller 3-2 (16-25, 25-22, 25-19, 21-25, and 15-8) in their quarterfinal match at Chatchai Hall. The result came against all predictions, considering Serbia’s pedigree and form in this competition as the only undefeated team before they suffered their first upset at the crucial stage. This is the first edition of the Championship since their first participation in 2007 where Serbia has been eliminated before the semifinal. Peru made the semis for the first time since 1993 and second time in their history to face World No. 1 China. Serbia meets the Dominican Republic for the classification matches 5-8. Peru’s captain and outstanding spiker Angela Leyva played an extra ordinary game to finish as her team’s best scorer with 20 points including 3 blocks and one ace followed by Maguilaura Frias with 16. From the Serbian side again Sara Lozo was the best scorer with 17 points followed by Bojana Milenkovic (16).
Super attacking weapon Xinyue Yuan who is the second tallest player in the competition (199 cm) anchored World No. 1 China to a historic victory over World No. 8 Dominican Republic in a fantastic comeback from two sets down (22-25, 20-25, 25-11, 25-22, and 15-6) after 106 minutes of play. China qualified to the semifinal of the competition for the second time in row and fifth in their history.
World No. 2 Brazil beat Asian giants Japan ranked ninth with a well worked victory 3-0 (25-23, 25-22, and 25-22) at Chatchai Hall. As usual Brazil provides a different star in every match, and this time it was middle-blocker Laiza Ferreira who delivered a strong performance with 6 blocks out of her tally of 13 points. She prevented the Japanese from using their dominance in attack through the center of the net.
World No. 5 USA booked a semifinal spot after beating No. 6 2013 European champions Poland 3-0 (25-22, 25-20, and 26-24). USA killed 15 blocks during the match out of them 5 by the 197 cm tall Audriana Fitzmorris who had the match best blocking performance beside 5 ace services making the difference against 9 blocks and 6 aces from the Polish side. Alexa Smith was USA’s best scorer with 13 points followed by Mikaela Foecke (11) while three players from Poland (Malgorzata Smieszek, Kornelia Moskwa and Magdalena Damaske) scored 10 points each.
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