Super Lega 2022 - News

Yant 1205

Yant celebrates a point against Trentino during the fourth match of the SuperLega Finals

Cucine Lube Civitanova wouldn’t go down without a fight and the defending champions proved it by topping Itas Trentino at home on Friday to take the SuperLega Credem Banca Finals to a fifth and decisive match.

Despite the absence of star opposite Ivan Zaytsev, Lube delivered a strong performance in front of their home fans in Civitanova Marché to overcome Trentino in four sets (25-18, 27-25, 20-25, 25-16) and tie the Scudetto Finals 2-2, creating the need for a fifth and last duel between the teams, on May 17, in Trento, at 20:30 local time (18:30 UTC).

· Watch all SuperLega Credem Banca matches live or on demand on VBTV.

With Zaytsev sidelined due to a shoulder injury sustained during match three, on Sunday, 21-year-old Cuban Marlon Yant embraced the responsibility of carrying Lube’s offense against Trentino.

The young outside hitter, who will soon be in action with Cuba in the Volleyball Nations League 2023, was the match’s top scorer with 24 points and got a significant share of his production from the service line, firing an impressive seven aces.

“Coming into this match, we knew that serving could make a difference, especially if we managed to have good runs, and we trained it a lot,” Yant commented. “I think we did really well from the service line and that helped us earn a great result. I’ve been working hard to help my teammates and it’s great to leave the court after a match like this.”

The two players used by head coach Gianlorenzo Blengini to replace Zaytsev, American opposite Gabriel Garcia, who started on the bench, and outside hitter Mattia Bottolo, also came up big for the defending champions, producing 14 and 11 points, respectively.

A 2022 world champion with the Italian national team, Bottolo started the match playing as an opposite, but later moved back to his original outside hitter position, with Garcia coming in and Bulgarian Aleksandar Nikolov, who produced seven points, going to the bench.

Trentino, on the other hand, got most of their production from the players who typically lead the team, with Bulgarian opposite Matey Kaziyski tallying 16 points (12 kills, four aces) and outside hitters Alessandro Michieletto and Daniele Lavia adding 12 and ten, respectively. The team couldn't count on middle blocker Srecko Lisinac, who's injured.

“We obviously expected a difficult match, but in the first set, it just felt like we weren't ready,” head coach Angelo Lorenzetti said. “We improved our passing on set two and took our game to a better level, but Lube took some risks and were rewarded for it. Our victory on set three reopened the match, but when you start trailing 2-0, there's really no more room for errors.”

Besides having the edge in aces (12 to seven), Lube were also better offensively, registering 56 kills to Trentino’s 44. The 2022 FIVB Men’s Club World Championship silver medallists, however, were slightly better in blocks (six to five) and benefited from more opponent errors (27 to 24).

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Lega Pallavolo SuperLega Credem Banca
Lega Pallavolo Femminile Serie A1