Dallas, USA July 3, 2016 – Already qualified for the Final Round, the U.S. nevertheless put on a great show, beating Russia 3-0 (35-33, 25-17, 25-21) on Sunday in the final match of pool play in the FIVB World League at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Arena.
The U.S. finishes pool play at 8-1 and in second place to Brazil. The U.S. will travel to Krakow for the Final Round on July 13-17. The winning team takes $1 million.
Russia, which knew going into the match that it would not advance to the Final Round in Krakow, finishes World League at 5-4 and in sixth place. The defending Olympic champion will prepare for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The first set proved to be an exciting opening act with Russia taking four set points and the U.S. reaching five. With the score tied 33-33, U.S. middle blocker David Lee scored with a spike and outside hitter Taylor Sander followed with one of his own to give Team USA the win.
The long set seemed to take the wind out of Russia’s sails and the U.S. dominated the next two sets.
U.S. middle blocker Max Holt led all scorers with 14 points a match-high five aces and a match-high three blocks along with six spikes. Outside hitter Aaron Russell finished with 13 points on 12 attacks and one ace.
Russian opposite Victor Poletaev led his team with 13 points on 11 spikes and two blocks. Dimitriy Muserskiy added eight points on six attacks snd two blocks.
The U.S. offense was on-point, leading in spikes 47-31. The U.S. also led 7-2 in aces while Russia finished with nine blocks as compared to the United States’ six.