Tenerife, Spain, March 20, 2005. After having won the women's Indesit European Champions' League title in 1997, 1999 and in 2000 Foppapedretti Bergamo took back the title this time, following a surprisingly short final against their Italian compatriots from Sant'Orsola Asystel Novara (3:0).
Foppapedretti Bergamo started off incredibly well under the influence of Russian-Turc Lioubov Kilic and team captain Paola Paggi (5-2, 7-4). Although Novara came back strong (9-8), Bergamo kept the upper hand (12-11, 13-12), attaining a six-point advantage (18-12, 21-15, 22-16). Coming on strong at the net German Angelina Grün secured two attacks for Bergamo (24-17) before Francesca Piccinini successfully blocked an attack by Novara (25-18). After Lioubov Kilic's ace gave Bergamo a 3-0 lead Novara caught up (3-3), but fell back again (4-7, 6-9).
Manuela Secolo and Maja Poljak led their team Bergamo, dominating the game on attack and block (16-8). Even though Novara had several chances to score they hardly ever found a way past the solid red-and-white block (20-12, 21-13, 22-14). A forceful smash by Lioubov Kilic secured the first set point for Bergamo (24-15). Although the team coached by Angiolino Frigoni managed to gain another point (24-15), Lioubov Kilic terminated the second set with another successful diagonal spike (25-16). Polish Malgorzata Glinka opened the third set scoring twice on smash (0-2), but Novara's hopes were crushed when Lioubov Kilic took over the serve and the game with some help from her Italian team mate Francesca Piccinini (6-2).
Novara didn't give up and managed to fight back, taking over a short-term lead (8-9). On their way to victory Paola Paggi & Co. nearly always found the gap in Novara's line-up (16-12, 17-14). Kilic's strong but also clever attacking play brought Bergamo a five-point advantage (22-17). Attack mistakes by Spasojevic and Glinka gave Bergamo the first match point (24-17), which Lioubov Kilic virtually "killed" with a block (25-17).
Naturally, the latter named became the best scorer of the final with 20 points, whilst 21-year old Maja Poljak, also from Foppapedretti Bergamo, was the second best scorer (14 points from which 5 points from block).
In the earlier match host Tenerife Marichal claimed the bronze medal after defeating French Rc Cannes in the match for the third position. The Spanish squad won the previous edition of the Indesit European Champions' League but was eliminated in the semifinals this year after losing to Foppapedretti Bergamo. Tenerife Marichal won the clash 3:1 with Magaly Carvajal scoring the most points (23 points). Second best scorer with 21 points was Rc Cannes Lithuanian spiker Olga Tocko. This match was the last one for Tenerife Marichal with head coach José Dos Santos, as the Brazilian will return to his home country this week.
Most Valuable Player: Lioubov Kilic (Foppapedretti Bergamo) Best scorer: Victoria Ravva (Rc Cannes) Best attacker: Lioubov Kilic (Foppapedretti Bergamo) Best blocker: Maja Poljak (Foppapedretti Bergamo) Best server: Virginie De Carne (Sant'Orsola Asystel Novara) Best setter: Iryna Zhukova (Foppapedretti Bergamo) Best libero: Paola Cardullo (Sant'Orsola Asystel Novara) Best receiver: Esther Lopez (Tenerife Marichal)
The European Cups competitions last Final Four tournament will be the men's Indesit European Champions' League 2004/05 in Thessaloniki (Gre) from 26-27 March 2005 with the semifinal pairings of two-times defending champion Lokomotiv Belgorod (Rus) vs host team Iraklis Thessaloniki (Gre) and Vfb Friedrichshafen (Ger) vs Tours Vb (Fra).
Women's Indesit European Champions' League 2004/05
Final Four in Tenerife (Esp)
Foppapedretti Bergamo (Ita) - Sant'Orsola Asystel Novara (Ita)
3:0 25-18, 25-16, 25-17 78 mins
Bronze Medal Match
Tenerife Marichal (Esp) - Rc Cannes (Fra)
3:1 25-18, 19-25, 25-23, 25-22 101 mins
Tenerife Marichal (Esp) - Foppapedretti Bergamo (Ita)
0:3 24-26, 18-25, 16-25 79 mins
Sant'Orsola Asystel Novara (Ita) - Rc Cannes (Fra)
3:1 22-25, 25-21, 25-20, 25-22 101 mins
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