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Brazil and Germany reach girls' final at the U19 World Championships

Brazil's Eduarda Lisboa Santos (left) and Andressa Cavalcanti Ramalho reached the semifinals
Porto, Portugal, August 3, 2014 – Brazil’s Eduarda Santos Lisboa reached the final of the FIVB U19 World Championships in Porto for the second year in a row. She and Andressa Cavalcanti Ramalho will face Germany’s Sarah Schneider and Lisa Arnholdt in the gold medal match on Sunday.

The youngest player in the final, 16-year old Eduarda, is the only one out of the four athletes who played in a final before. Last year she won gold at the U19 with Taina Silva Bigi and at the U23 in 2013 she won a silver medal with Thais Rodrigues.

Eduarda and Andressa defeated Czech team Kristyna Adamcikova and Katerina Valkova 2-0 (21-14, 21-12) in the semifinal. The Brazilian girls were definitely the more experienced team and were leading throughout the whole match.

“I feel something that I can’t explain”, Eduarda said afterwards. “It is like I’m going to the finals for the first time, but I really want to help her to win the championship.”

“Andressa makes me happy”, she continued. “I enjoy playing with her, we play with so much joy and we always want to do our best. I just have to thank her and everybody that is cheering for us.”

Andressa (17) finished 5th last year at the U19 with Paula Hoffmann and has never played a final before. “I’m so anxious to play and to do my best, but I am also very confident because I’m playing with a champion and I couldn’t be happier.”

Germany defeats Canadian twins

Schneider and Arnholdt defeated Megan and Nicole McNamara 2-0 (21-14, 21-19) in the other semifinal. The Germans were very much in control in the first set, while Canada made a lot of unforced errors.

The twins came back strong in the second set with a 5-1 lead, but Germany levelled quickly and jumped from 10-10 to 16-10 with a strong service run from Arnholdt.

The match seemed a done deal, but Canada closed in again with some strong serving, trailing only by one point in the end. At 19-18 however Nicole served in the net and at their second match point Schneider scored the winning point.

“We did it”, said Schneider. “It was a hard game, but we did it. I am speechless.”

Schneider made it to the final four last year with Lara Schreiber, but ended up with 4th place. “But now we made it. We will give our 200 percent next, but this match took a lot of power and energy, so we will rest a little bit and we will be there for the next game.”

It will be the second time in 13 years Brazil and Germany face each other in the girl’s final of the U19 World Championships. In 2003 in Pataya Germany’s Kohler/Ludwig defeated Seixas/Carolina of Brazil in the gold medal match.

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