FIVB Volleyball Girls' U18 World Championship

Press release

Lokomotiv book first place in Pool B with 3-2 win

Russia's Lokomotiv Novosibirsh scored via 13 blocks in the close victory over Sportif Sfaxien of Tunisia

Betim, Brazil, October 18, 2013 – Russia’s Lokomotiv Novosibirsk edged Tunisia’s Sportif Sfaxien 3-2 (25-21, 20-25, 25-19, 22-25, 16-14) to claim first place of Pool B in the FIVB Men’s Club World Championship at Divino Braga Gymnasium on Friday.

The Russians trailed 14-13 in the tie-breaker but Artem Volvich served two straight aces and then Anton Astashenkov scored with a block for the win.

Volvich was the top scorer for Lokomotiv with 17 points, followed by Nikolay Leonenko  (14), Astashenkov (13) and Pavel Moroz (12).

Mohamed Ben Abdallah scored a match-high 26 points for Sportif Sfaxien, while Ismail Moalla and Noureddine Hfadieh each registered 16 points.

Lokomotiv held a 13-6 advantage in the blocking department and committed 35 unforced errors to 31 by the Tunisian club.

Lokomotiv’s strong blocking helped for the 5-1 lead. The Russian club led 8-3 at the first TTO. Ben Abdallah and Samir Sellam attacked and blocked to cut the distance to 8-5. Lokomotiv maintained the five-point difference at the second TTO and ended winning the first set 25-21. Astashenkov scored four points as also did Sportif Sfaxien’s Ben Abdallah, Ismaeil Moalla and Noureddine Hfaiedh.

Volvich broke a tie at 7-7 with a huge spike for the Lokomotiv advantage at the first pause of the second set. Sportif Sfaxien capitalized on a bad streak of the Russian side to take a 13-10 lead. Lokomotiv recovered to even the score at 13-13, but Ben Abdallah landed his spike and Moalla’s serve was good for 15-13. The Tunisian club led 16-14 at the second TTO following the spike down the middle by Omar Agrebi. They went on to surprisingly win the second set 25-20 against one Lokomotiv side without setter Alexander Bubko and opposite Pavel Moroz.

In the third set Lokomotiv started with the first unit and led 8-5 at the first TTO.  Then slowed down a little but managed to stay in front 16-14. At 17-15, Bubko, Volvih and Leonenko put together a streak for a 20-16 score. Lokomotiv won 25-19.

Sportif Sfaxien led 8-6 and 16-12 at the technical stops of the fourth set. Moalla scored one ace that dropped off the net and Zouari blocked Moroz for 18-14. Ben Abdallah landed one of his powerful shot for 20-17. The Tunisian club took the fourth set 25-22 with Ben Abdallah totaling seven points.

Teams were tied at 6-6 in the tie-breaker when Ben Abdallah and Moalla scored consecutive spikes. Divis and Leonenko tied the score at 8 but then Ben Abdallah and Moalla collected two straight spikes for the 10-8 advantage. Ben Abdallah blocked Leonenko and later scored with a soft tip for 12-9. Moalla crashed his serve and Moroz imitated him. At 14-13, Volvich served two aces with floating serves to give Lokomotiv the 16-15 advantage. The set closed 17-15 when Astashenkov blocked Ben Abdallah.

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