Shaoxing, China, December 8, 2019 – Imoco Volley Conegliano won the gold medal in their maiden FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship appearance at the Shaoxing Olympic Sports Centre on Sunday.
Imoco Volley Conegliano completed their unbeaten run in the tournament with a 3-1 (22-25, 25-14, 25-19, 25-21) win over Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul in the final.
Paola Egonu went on another unstoppable scoring run to surpass the 30-point mark again as she recorded 33 points that powered the Conegliano-based club’s offence.
Egonu’s strong swings from the attack and service lines gave her team the momentum to overcome their opening set loss to the Turkish side. In the succeeding sets, Imoco Volley managed to limit their errors and improved on their passing to allow Joana Wolosz to dish out brilliant plays to Egonu and her other teammates.
Vakifbank Istanbul took the bronze medal after getting the better of Igor Gorgonzola Novara in a straight-set 3-0 (26-24, 25-23, 25-21) affair after recovering from a tough five-set semifinal loss.
Isabelle Haak went beyong the 20-point mark with 23 points to lead the Turkish club, with her teammate Ebrar Karakurt adding 12 points. Igor Gorgonzola Novara’s top scorers Jovana Brakocevic and Elitsa Vasileva were contained by the Vakifbank defenders, as they only managed to score 14 and 10 points respectively.
Both squads played a tight game in the first two sets, denying each other big runs. However, Vakifbank had a better end game and concluded the first two sets with a two-point edge. In the third set, Maja Ognjenovic’s brilliant setting and Haak’s scoring game continued to flourish, helping their side gain enough advantage to work on the finishing touches to their match victory.
Itambe Minas bounced back in the last two sets to snatch the 3-2 (18-25, 25-14, 18-25, 25-22, 15-9) victory against Dentil Praia Clube in the all-Brazilian club battle for fifth place.
Deja McClendon and Thaisa Menezes created a wonderful tandem to keep Minas’ offence and defence running in the five-setter. McClendon topped all scorers with 23 points built from 19 attacks, one block and three service winners, while Thaisa’s 18 markers came from nine attacks, eight stuff blocks and an ace. Brayelin Elizabeth Martinez contributed 21 points in the losing effort for Dentil Praia Clube.
In the Chinese club derby, Guangdong Evergrande Volleyball Club finished seventh, following their 3-0 (28-26, 25-20, 25-21) win over Tianjin Bohai Bank Volleyball Club. For the Guangdong-based team, four players scored in double-figures to contribute to the straight-set win, with Chen Peiyan leading the charge with 17 markers, while her teammates Dobriana Rabadzhieva, Yang Hanyu and Zhang Fengmei each produced 10 points.
1. Imoco Volley Conegliano
2. Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul
3. Vakifbank Istanbul
4. Igor Gorgonzola Novara
5. Itambe Minas
6. Dentil Praia Clube
7. Guangdong Evergrande Volleyball Club
8. Tianjin Bohai Bank Volleyball Club