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Volleyball, Coppa Italia, Milan feat, Civitanova out

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Volleyball, Coppa Italia, Milan feat, Civitanova out

Perugia defeats Cisterna without problems and faces Piacenza who wins in the tie break against Verona. Allianz eliminated Lube for the second year in a row

At the Final Four of the Coppa Italia in Rome on 25 and 26 February the matches will be Perugia-Piacenza and Trento-Milan

Perugia-Cisterna 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-23)

Perugia hits the mark with momentum in qualifying for the final four of the Italian Cup, clearly overcoming Cisterna in three sets. In front of the more than 2500 players at PalaBarton there was almost never a game and for Sir Safety the seasonal balance is getting more and more exciting, with 24 victories in as many games played. In any case, the Lazio players tried to react in the third set, but without the necessary continuity. Initially, Perugia sided with Giannelli as director, Rychlicki as opposite, Flavio and Russo as central players, Leon and Semeniuk as spikers and Colaci as libero. On the other hand, Cisterna responded with Baranowicz in control, Dirlic as opposite, Rossi and Zingel as central players, Gutierrez and Sedlacek as spikers, with Catania free. In the first set Cisterna attempted to extend (0-3) at the start, but Andrea Anastasi’s sextet immediately reversed the score (5-4) and dominated thanks to a punctual Rychlicki (4 points and 100% in attack in the fraction) and to an unbeatable Russian (3 blocks for him in the fraction). In the second set, the gap in favor of Perugia was even clearer, with the score expanding right from the start and despite Fabio Soli’s decisive changes (with the entries of Martinez, Kaliberda and Bayram) the trend did not change and the set ended (25-18) with Dirlic’s error in attack. In the third set Cisterna somehow tried to hang on to the score. Perugia devastating in batting with Leon (double ace for 14-9) to dig that furrow which later proved to be crucial for the success to mature, despite Cisterna managing to get back down to 22-21. The final point (25-23) was given away again with a serving error by Dirlic. Antonello Menconi

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Civitanova-Milan 1-3 (25-18, 21-25, 18-25, 21-25)

Like a year ago, history repeats itself. Milan in the quarterfinals of the Italian Cup defeats Civitanova with the same score of 3-1 and eliminates Lube from the Final Four. A Lube that lasts only one set, the first won easily, then comes out of the challenge submerged by the service and the relentless attack of the Piazza team who takes over the game and never leaves it. On the shields in the Allianz the test of Ishikawa (mvp), Mergarejo and Patry well primed by Porro who dragged Milan to the enterprise that interrupts the series of 8 consecutive successes of Civitanova. Blengini tried to rotate the entire red and white roster but was unable to find the solutions to reopen a match shot in the Milan half-field. Full teams for this inside out or out race. Civitanova immediately asserts himself against the block in the initial exchanges which are worth 6-1 with three blocks signed by Anzani, Nikolov and Zaytsev. It is Civitanova’s attack that creates so many problems for Milan who try to react by relying on the plays of the opposite Patry and on the serve with Mergarejo who bring the guests back into the challenge. Not for long, however, because a very determined Lube extends her lead again to 17-11. Piazza tries to change something by making full use of his bench, a move which however does not disorient Civitanova who continues at his own pace and takes home a first set in absolute and total control. In the second set Allianz gains the double advantage with Patry’s block, forcing Civitanova to chase: an out attack by Bottolo and Ishikawa’s ace launches Milan up 13-17 with Blengini throwing Yant into the fray for Bottolo. Civitanova is inaccurate and misses too many counterattacks which allow opponents effective replays with devastating Patry and Ishikawa. So Milan goes for a second set where it has raised its level of play and exploited the empty passes of Lube. Third with an Allianz that continues to hammer in the service with the reception of Civitanova who suffers (3-7). With Milan instead exalting itself and mastering the game with an attack that puts Lube on the ropes despite the changes by Blengini who at 12-19 also throws Sottile and Garcia into the fray to try to reverse an absolutely negative trend for the Marches in front of a Milan that never misses a beat. And he goes to win the partial that marks the overtaking. In the fourth, Zaytsev’s wrong serve and Porro’s block on Nikolov sign the first break of the set for Milan (13-15). Ishikawa’s wall appears to be a sentence for Civitanova who sees the Lombards extend their advantage and run away. Ishikawa gives 4 match balls to Allianz who closes in the second always with the Japanese. Mauro Giustozzi

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Verona-Piacenza 2-3 (19-25, 33-31, 22-25, 25-21, 8-15)

It was December 17 but a volleyball era seems to have passed. Exactly 12 days ago in the championship Piacenza won 3-1 at the end of a very balanced challenge, this time there is the Final four up for grabs but above all two teams are facing each other who ask the Italian Cup to forget the last bad Superlega parenthesis. Verona overwhelmed by Trento with Stoytchev bringing all his boys in front of the cameras to take collective responsibility, Piacenza overtaken by Modena with an overly compliant test that questioned Bernardi’s bench. The result was a bad match full of mistakes: Piacenza went to the semi-final of the Cup, which therefore reached its first goal of the season. In the red and white house, Leal’s doubt remains until the teams enter the field: the spiker warms up but then does not enter the sextet. Simon does it instead by signing the initial 3-0 by himself and then with the help of Brizard transforms the initial set into a monologue: for the Cuban central defender 10 points only in the first fraction showing the entire repertoire: attacks, blocks and aces . When Simon becomes human again the real game begins, even if he does a bit of a Penelope-like Verona: he carries on and then makes too many mistakes allowing the guests to return. The salt is all in the queue, with the Scaligeri who, after canceling an opportunity for the guests to go ahead 2-0, evened the score in the eighth set point with Sapozhkov and Mozic who equally divided 18 points, making up for Keita’s difficult moment. It is also clear that they are not two healthy teams in the third half: the show is not one of the unforgettable ones so the challenge is all about competitiveness. But once again it’s the mistakes that make the difference: in the final Brizard blocks Mozic shoulder to shoulder, then a mistake by the spiker and one by Sapozhkov make it 25-22 in Piacenza. Stoytchev changes direction by sending Raphael onto the field for Spirito and the hosts start off better because Keita dusts off his arms and with his serve drags his players up to 14-7. At that point, a few flashes from Withu are enough to bring the match to the tie break. Where the guests take a first mini break with Romanò (5-3) which they expand with Brizard’s ace of 10-7. Then Smon drags his players up to 15-8 (Matteo Marchetti)

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