Final Six: USA ABOVE THE WALL. RUSSIA OUT.

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USA-Russia 3:0 (25:22, 25:23, 25:23)
USA: Sander 15, McDonnell 5, Anderson 9, Russell 17, Holt 4, Christenson 2. Shoji E. (L), Smith 5, Jendryk ne, Shoji K. Ne, Patch, Langlois, Averill, Watten (L). Coach. Speraw.
RUSSIA: Volkov, Kurkaev 4, Mikhaylov 9, Kliuka 11, Muserskiy 12, Grankin 1. Verbov (L), Butko, Sokolov, Poletaev 7, Vlasov ne, Volvich 1, Rodichev ne, Berezheko (L) ne. Coach. Shliapnikov,

After this match, USA and Brazil claimed the first two tickets to the semifinals of the World Championship 2018! Russia, actual reigning European champions, back to home early, without victories in 3rd Round of the competition. Yesterday they had already lost against Brazil after losing a two-set advantage. So, also Brazil follow USA into the semifinals.
USA and Brazil will play tomorrow to decide first place in this pool, that will determine positions for Saturday’s semifinals.
The american attack made the difference, and if Taylor Sander dominated the first two sets, Aaron Russell closed the game.
After the big comeback of Brazil in the first match, russian coach Sergei Shliapnikov changed his setter: captain Sergey Grankin played in Russia’s starting six, while USA coach John Speraw played with his usual formation.

Usa-Russia in the first Round in Bari.

In the american side, Sander played a great match, and gone often above Ilyas Kurkaev’s or Dmitriy Muserskiy’s wall, closing with 15 points with a good reception and two blocks.
Victor Poletaev was sent into the field for Dmitry Volkov and not even Mikhaylov with 7/11 attack and 9 points, moving to the wing spiker position it was enough. In the third set coach Shliapnikov sent in the field also Artem Volvich like middle-blocker, but even if Russia had the last chance to reopen the match (and her World Championship) with the 4 Muserskiy blocks at the end of the game, Christenson called Russell in the counter attack. Russel scored four of the last five points, enough to sent Russia back to home.

Aaron Russell was the top scorer of the match with 17 points, followed by Taylor Sander with 15 points. On the other side, Dmitry Muserskiy scored 12, Egor Kliuka 11 and Maxim Mikhaylov 9.

Photos FIVB.