Russia thwarted Canada’s hopes for a strong start with 3-0 (26-24, 25-14, 25-19) victory today in the first leg of the inaugural 2018 FIVB Volleyball Nations League.
The towering Russian veteran Dmitriy Muserskiy scored 15 points (10 spikes, 3 blocks, 2 aces), and Egor Kliuka was the top scorer of the game with 14 successful attacks and an overall 16 points.
Canada was very competitive early on, but the Russians came back to win the first set. and then the momentum was theirs for the most of the match, which included impressive serving and blocking.
“We had the opportunity in the first set; we were playing good – we made some mistakes and they (Russia) were much better in the second and third set,” said Canada’s head coach Stephane Antiga. “Our regrets were in the first set. I saw some good things from the players today, so it’s important that we win tomorrow and prepare for the match against Poland on Sunday.”
Brad Gunter (15 points) was a bright spot for Canada.
Canada’s roster this week:
1 – TJ Sanders, London, ON (setter)
3 – Steve Marshall, Abbotsford, BC (outside hitter)
4 – Nicholas Hoag, Sherbrooke, QC (outside hitter)
5 – Lucas Van Berkel, Edmonton, AB (middle blocker)
7 – Stephen Maar, Aurora, ON (outside hitter)
9 – Jason DeRocco, Winnipeg, MB (outside hitter)
11 – Daniel Jansen Vandoorn, Langley, BC (middle blocker)
15 – Bryan Duquette, St. Thomas, ON (libero)
16 – Ryan Sclater, Port Coquitlam, BC (opposite)
17 – Graham Vigrass, Calgary, AB (middle blocker)
18 – Bradley Gunter, Comox, BC (opposite)
19 – Blair Bann, Edmonton, AB (libero)
20 – Arthur Szwarc, Toronto, ON (middle blocker)
21 – Brett Walsh, Calgary, AB (setter)
Head coach: Stephane Antiga
Assistant coach: Dan Lewis
Therapist: Melissa Healy
Statistician: Lionel Bonnaure
Team manager:Julien Boucher