A five-set roller-coaster ride ends with a win for Canada

Hiroshima, Japan, September 13, 2015 – Canada went on a long roller-coaster ride, but managed to beat Australia in five sets (32-34, 25-14, 25-21, 27-29, 20-18) today at the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Cup.

Canada’s Gord Perrin led scoring with 26 points, and was also named the game’s “most impressive player.”  Daniel Jansen Vandoorn had 23 points; and Steve Marshall 20. Thomas Edgar, who sat out much of the first three sets after a whopping 50-point game with Egypt last night, was top scorer for Australia with 21; followed by Paul Carroll with 20.

The match broke two World Cup records including the longest match (2 hours 49 minutes) and the highest scoring game (245 points).

“We are very happy with the win, especially after our match last night when we were very disappointed in our loss against Japan, and I think we needed to prove something to ourselves,” said Canada’s coach Glenn Hoag. “It was a hard-fought match….  We’re not really good at one specific thing, we try to be good at everything, and just keep working hard.”

Early on, the Aussies looked in control of the first set, until they let Canada catch up and it was even at 24. From there it was back and forth until Australia won the set with 34 points.  

It was a determined Canadian team that showed up for the second set – carving out a good lead and maintaining it to win the set by 11 points. Although closer, Canada again looked unbeatable in the third.

However, Edgar’s introduction at the beginning of the fourth set gave Australia a boost and the Aussies took an early lead.  But the end of the set saw Canada draw level at 20-all. Canada earned the first match point, but Australia reversed it on 26-25 and went on to take it to a fifth.

Australia carried the momentum into the final set.  A successful block touch challenge call brought up Australia’s first match point. They failed on both their first and second chances to clinch the match, and then Canada earned two match points of their own. But Australia came back both times and then earned a another match point of their own. They blew the chance again before it was Canada’s turn to take the game. The drama reached boiling point as Edgar spiked to draw level at 18-all. Canada earned yet another match point in a game that refused to end before Steven Marshall’s serve hit the tape and rolled over just out of reach of the dig, denying Australia.

“I said yesterday that our team always plays hard and we didn’t give up in the fifth set – they had a couple of match points and we fought through it,” said Canada’s captain, Fred Winters. “It was a big team win after two pretty poor performances (against the U.S. and Japan) in the last two days, so it was nice for us.”Canada enters the next phase of the tournament with two wins and three losses.  Full rankings and results can be found here.The FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Cup Japan 2015 runs from September 8 to 23. The winner and runner-up in the 12-team competition will qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Schedule/results                                                    HiroshimaSept. 08: Canada vs Italy  1-3 (19 – 25, 20 – 25, 25 – 22, 13 – 25)
Sept. 09: Egypt vs Canada  2-3 (22-25, 23-25, 25-21, 26-24, 12-15)
Sept. 10: Canada vs. US  0-3 (21-25, 20-25, 17-25)
Sept. 12: Japan vs. Canada 3-0 (25-17, 25-15, 25-21)
Sept. 13: Canada vs. Australia 3-2 (32-34, 25-14, 25-21, 27-29, 20-18)

ToyamaSept. 16: Canada vs Poland
Sept. 17: Canada vs. Russia
Sept. 18: Canada vs. Argentina           

TokyoSept. 21: Canada vs. Venezuela
Sept. 22: Canada vs. Iran
Sept. 23: Canada vs. Tunisia

Canadian Roster:

#1  TJ Sanders, London, ON
#2  Gordon Perrin, Creston, BC
#3  Dan Lewis, Oakville, ON
#5  Rudy Verhoeff, Calgary, AB
#6  Justin Duff, Winnipeg, MB
#9  Dustin Schneider, Brandon, MB
#10 Toon Van Lankvelt, Rivers, MB
#11 Daniel Jansen Vandoorn, Langley, BC
#12 Gavin Schmitt, Saskatoon, SK
#15 Fred Winters, Victoria, BC
#17 Graham Vigrass, Calgary, AB
#18 Nicholas Hoag, Sherbrooke, QC
#19 Blair Bann, Edmonton, AB
#22 Steven Marshall, Abbotsford, BC
Glenn Hoag, head coach,
Vincent Pichette, assistant coach
Julien Boucher, team manager
Jean-Sebastien Hartell, athletic therapist
Murat Haktanir, statistician