London 2012

Press release

USA stand alone atop of Pool B with 3-0 mark

Foluke Akinradewo of USA scores against China to help the American victory on Wednesday

London, Great Britain, August 1, 2012 – Top world-ranked United States took sole possession of first place in Pool B following their 3-0 (26-24, 25-16, 31-29) well battled triumph over No. 3 China in a match between teams with unbeaten win-loss record on Wednesday.

It was the eighth consecutive victory for USA over China who last defeated the Americans in the 2007 World Grand Prix.

The Americans, who held a 10-8 advantage in the blocking department, improved to 3-0 while China saw their mark fall to 2-1.

Destinee Hooker and Megan Hodge hammered 22 and 18 points respectively to top the American attack while Foluke Akinradewo and Logan Tom chipped in with 10 and 9. Zheng Chunlei had 10 for China and teammate Chu Junling added nine points.

The first set started very tightly, with Destinee Hooker, Foluke Akinradewo and Logan Tom landing spikes for the USA, while Zhang Lei, Ma Yunwen and Yang Junjing countered for China. The teams swapped points up to 20-20, with Wang Yimei and Jordan Larson also contributing. USA lost a set-point before a huge Hooker spike set up another and a Chinese error gave them the set 26-24.

Both team captains, Lindsey Berg and Wei Qiuyue, kept their teams moving in the second set with their accurate setting. Hooker, Akinradewo, Larson and Tom continued to get kills for USA, while Zhang, Ma, Yang and Wang spiked for China. Hui Ruoqi also joined the scoring. China led, but USA pulled back to 11-11, then went in front as Megan Hodge impressed with five great spikes. Danielle Scott-Arruda, playing in her fifth Olympics, scored four points in a fine cameo. USA won the set 25-16.

The third set started closely again. The same dominant players scored, with Chu Jinling also contributing. They tied at 20-20 and 23-23. The drama was incredible as USA saved a set-point, then China saved five match-points in a row. But, finally, Hodge spiked a great winner to give USA the set 31-29, and the match.

Unbeaten USA face Korea in the fourth round of preliminary matches on Friday, while China, with two wins and this loss, face Turkey.

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