Netherlands, Turkey Win in 4 to Claim Last Two Final Six Spots

  0 Wendy Mayer | June 13th, 2018 | Asian Volleyball, European volleyball, FIVB Nations League - Women, International Volleyball, News


  • June 12th-June 14th, 2018
  • Stuttgart, Germany | Porsche-Arena (Capacity: 6,181)
  • Time Zone: Central European Summer Time (UTC + 2)
  • World Rankings: #1 China, #8 Netherlands, #12 Turkey, #13 Germany
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  • Schedule/Results
Date Time Score Set 1 Set 2 Set 3 Set 4 Set 5 Total Report
12 Jun 17:30 Turkey  2–3  Netherlands 11–25 29–31 25–16 25–20 10–15 100–107
12 Jun 20:30 Germany  2–3  China 25–20 27–25 17–25 23–25 8–15 100–110
13 Jun 17:30 China  1–3  Netherlands 24–26 25–17 17–25 21–25 87–93
13 Jun 20:30 Germany  1–3  Turkey 16–25 15–25 25–20 19-25 75–64

Netherlands def. China 3-1

  • Netherlands defeated China 26-24, 17-25, 25-17, 25-21
  • Netherlands moved to 11-3 (31 points); China moved to 7-7 (22 points)

In a win and in situation, the Dutch proved up to the task, besting top ranked China in four sets to claim their spot among the VNL Final Six.

The World No. 1 Chinese outblocked the Netherlands 14-7, but the Dutch led in every other way: kills (64-57), aces (8-2) and points off errors (14-13).

Lonneke Sloetjes guided the Dutch with a match-high 28 points, racking up 26 kills and a team-best two aces. Anne Buijs (17), Yvon Belien (14) and Maret Balkestein-Grothues (11) played key supporting roles. Buijs tacked on 15 kills and Balkestein-Grothues added 10 putaways. Belein came through with eight putdowns, but also accounted for a team-best four blocks and two aces.

Yingying Li (19), Xiangyu Gong (16), Xinyue Yuan (13) and Fang Duan (11) guided China. Li posted a team-best 14 kills and added a team-best five blocks. Gong chimed in with 12 putaways, two blocks and a team-high two aces. Duan added 11 kills and Yuan followed with 10 terminations and three blocks.

The Dutch led 16-15 at the second technical timeout of Set 1 and the teams battled to the brink. China earned the first set-point try, but it was the Netherlands who managed a 26-24 victory.

China imposed its will with blocking and offense en route to an 8-5 lead in Set 2. The Dutch rallied, but Yi Gao answered for the Chinese in a 25-17 win to knot up the match.

After trailing 6-5 early, the Dutch built a five-point lead at 16-11 behind Balkestein-Grothues’ serve, which resulted in five straight points. China was within three several times, but the Netherlands found an answer on each occasion with help from Juliet Lohuis, who provided five points over the final two stanzas.

Sloetjes and Buijs teamed up to lead the Netherlands to a 25-21 Set 4 win, which secured the team a spot in the Final Six.


Turkey def. Germany 3-1

  • Turkey defeated Germany 25-16, 25-15, 20-25, 25-19
  • Turkey moved to 10-4 (32 points); Germany moved to 5-9 (15 points)

With the pressure on after an Italian sweep earlier in the day, Turkey removed any questions as to their presence in the Final Six, securing a spot with a four-set win over Germany.

The Turkish side racked up 13 blocks (to 3) and grabbed 12 more points on kills (56-44) and three on errors (23-20). Germany outserved Turkey 8-3 in aces.

Meryem Boz and four other starters managed double-digit point totals to lead Turkey. Boz notched 21 points (18 kills, 2 blocks, 1 ace), while Zehra Gunes (15), Eda Erdem Dundar (14), Seyma Ercan (10) and Meliha Ismailoglu (10) rounded out the scoring. Gunes pounded down 11 kills and put up a team-best four blocks, while Erdem Dundar chipped in 10 kills and four stuffs. Ercan tacked on 10 kills, while Ismailoglu tallied six kills, two blocks and a team-best two aces.

Kimberly Drewniok was the top scorer for Germany with 21 points (18 kills, 3 aces). Maren Fromm was next on the team with 10 points (9 kills, 1 ace), despite starting just the last three sets. Marie Scholzel and Jennifer Geerties were limited to seven and four points respectively. Scholzel served up three aces and added three kills and a block, while Geerties downed four kills. The team played Louisa Lippmann, its top scorer in VNL play.

Turkey followed Gunes to an 8-4 lead in Set 1 and Erdem chimed in with six points, including the game-winner, in a 25-16 win.

Germany got out to a good start in Set 2 as Drewniok starred, but Boz’s serve pulled Turkey ahead 11-8 and cruised to a 25-15 victory.

Turkey led 8-7 at the first technical timeout of Set 3, but Germany dug deep with help from the home crowd to claim a 25-20 win and extend the match.

The Germans carried the momentum to an early lead in Set 4, but Turkey worked its way to a 10-6 advantage soon after. Gunes and Erdem rolled to the 25-19 win and punch their ticket to China for the Final Six.

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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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