Italy Rallies for 5-Set Win Over Netherlands, Serbia Posts Sweep

  0 Wendy Mayer | June 06th, 2018 | European volleyball, FIVB Nations League - Women, International Volleyball, News, NORCECA volleyball

2018 FIVB Women’s Volleyball Nations League Week 4/Pool 13

  • June 5-7, 2018
  • Topsportcentrum Rotterdam; Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • Time Zone: UTC + 2 (ET +6)
  • World Rankings: #3 Serbia, #7 Italy, #8 Netherlands, #9 Dominican Republic
  • Preview
  • Schedule/Results
Date Time Score Set 1 Set 2 Set 3 Set 4 Set 5 Total Report
5 Jun 16:30 Italy  3–2  Serbia 19–25 25–21 25–21 18–25 15–13 102–105
5 Jun 19:30 Netherlands  3–0  Dominican Republic 25–22 25–21 25–18 75–61
6 Jun 16:30 Serbia  3–0  Dominican Republic 25–19 25–20 25–13 75–52
6 Jun 19:30 Netherlands  2–3  Italy 25–18 23–25 25–19 15–25 8–15 96–102

Serbia def. Dominican Republic 3-0

  • Serbia defeated Dominican Republic 25-19, 25-20, 25-13
  • Serbia moved to 9-2 (27 points); Dominican Republic moved to 2-9 (8 points)

Serbia bounced back from its five-set loss to Italy with a quick sweep of the Dominican Republic on Wednesday. The victory vaulted the Serbs into second place in the VNL standings.

Tijana Boskovic racked up a match-high 21 points with 20 kills and a block, her third straight 20-point effort. Bojana Milenkovic added 10 points with eight putaways and two stuffs. Jelena Blagojevic (8) and Jovana Stevanovic (7) followed with seven and four kills apiece. Stefana Veljkovic served up a team-best four aces.

Brayelin Martinez was the lone player to reach double digits for the Dominican Republic, posting 10 points on nine kills and a block. Yonkaira Pena Isabel chipped in eight points, all on kills, while Jineiry Martinez added four kills and a team-leading two blocks.

Serbia held the advantage in all facets of the game: kills (43-31), blocks (7-6), aces (8-3) and points off errors (16-13).

Set 2 was the most hotly contested of the match as the Dominican Republic went up 14-8, only to see Serbia come charging back with a 9-2 run en route to a 25-20 win.

With the loss, the Dominican Republic is mathematically eliminated from the VNL Final Six race.


Italy def. Netherlands 3-2

  • Italy defeated Netherlands 18-25, 25-23, 19-25, 25-15, 15-8
  • Italy moved to 6-5 (18 points); Netherlands moved to 8-3 (24 points)

Paola Egonu posted a team-leading 21 kills, four blocks and two aces, as Italy stayed relevant in the Volleyball Nations League Final Six Race with a five-set win over the Netherlands.

Anna Danesi and Elena Pietrini also registered double-digit scoring efforts with 15 and 14. Pietrini downed 12 kills and added two aces, while Danesi notched nine kills, four blocks and two aces.

Egonu’s 27 points were nearly matched by Lonneke Sloetjes‘ 25 for the home side, but her 21 kills, three aces and a block were not enough. Sloetjes’ nearest help came from Celeste Plak, who managed 10 points. Yvon Belien and Maret Balkestein-Grothues added eight points each. Plak tallied nine kills and an ace, while Balkestein-Grothues chipped in six putaways, a block and an ace. Belien was the team’s top blocker alongside Nicole Koolhaas with three stuffs.

Italy was the more error-prone team in the match with 35 to the Dutch team’s 28, including 10 in the opening stanza, but boasted a 54-45 lead in kills and 11-8 edge in blocks in the victory. The Netherlands outserved the Italians 9-8 in aces.

After falling behind 2-1 in the match, Italy built an 18-11 lead in Set 4 and boosted the margin to nine at 21-12. The Italians excelled from the service line, including a set-clinching ace by Pietrini.

Italy carried the momentum from there, pushing on to its second straight five-set win, following Tuesday’s victory over Serbia.

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About Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer has worked in athletics media relations for the last 20 years. The Northwest Missouri State alumna is currently senior writer for after spending the last 15 years with Purdue athletics.

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