FIVB Volleyball Girls' U18 World Championship


UPCN of Argentina prevail against Japan’s Panasonic

Theo Lopes scored 20 points in the victory of Argentina's UPCN over Panasonic Panthers of Japan

Betim, Brazil, October 15, 2013 – UPCN of Argentina recovered from losing the first set and went on to beat Japan’s Panasonic Panthers 3-1 (20-25, 25-23, 25-14, 25-23) in the second match of the FIVB Men’s Club World Championship on Tuesday at Divino Braga Gymansium.

Theo Lopes topped UPCN with 20 points, followed by Jose Santos, Martin Ramos and Alexandru Olteanu with 14, 13 and 12, respectively.

Panthers’ Kunihiro Shimizu had a match-high 21 points. Tatsuya Fukuzawa and Dante Amaral had 15 and 14 in the losing effort.

The winners dominated the blocking category 9-5 with Olteanu contributing four of them.

In the first set, Tatsuya Fukuzawa broke a tied score at 6-all to give the Panasonic Panthers an early 8-6 advantage. Kenji Shirasawa helped to build a 16-12 difference at the second technical time-out.  The Japanese club continued with a hot streak but Argentina’s UPCN rallied to close in at 23-19 behind the offense of Jose Santos. Finally, Kunihiro Shimizu scored with a big parallel spike and Hideomi Fukatsu blocked Javier Filardi for the 25-20 score.

Fukuzawa broke a tie at 7-all with a fantastic shot in the early stage of the second set. Panasonic went on to build a two-point lead with the cross-court spike by Dante Amaral. UPCN tied at 12 with a beautiful tip by Theo Lopes just on the baseline and were in front 16-14 at the second TTO. Fukuzawa scored twice to even the score at 18-18 but Santos answered back with a laser shot. The Panthers tied at 22 with Shinya Yamazoe and Shimizu producing consecutive kills. Then Lopes scored twice for the 25-23 in favor of UPCN.

Santos led an early rally of UPCN for a 4-0 start in the third. Then Alexandru Olteanu hammered three big kills for an 8-2 cushion. The Argentinean club was in front with a comfortable 9-point lead at the second pause 16-7 following another powerful attack by Santos. Lopes finished the set moving on high gear and UPCN took it 25-14.

UPCN took a one-point lead at the fourth set. They increased the margin to 11-8 with block by Ramos and foot fault by Dante in his killing attempt. The Panthers came back to tie at 13-all when Shimizu blocked Ramos and parlayed spikes with Shirasawa. UPCN led 16-14 at the second pause following the attack by Lopes and the block of Gonzales against Dante. The score tied at 16 with ace by Dante following an opponent’s error. Two attacking mistakes by the Japanese gave UPCN a two-point margin. Olteanu expanded the gap to 21-18. Shimizu attacked to close at 23-22 but Lopes answered back. Shimizu attacked again but Dante crashed his serve for the 25-23.

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