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05/03/2015 09:07
Uralochka celebrate away win, NAXOS receive standing ovation by home fans
2015 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup - Women

Naxos, Greece, March 4, 2015. The dream of the home heroines wearing the shirt of AON Pannaxiakos NAXOS lasted for only 69 minutes on Wednesday night. Their Russian rivals Uralochka-NTMK EKATERINBURG got to feel the pressure but only for a while and in the end managed to record a 3:0 victory (25-23, 25-15, 25-16) to make it closer to a spot in the semis of the 2015 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup – Women, waiting now for the re-match coming up next Thursday, March 12, in Russia.
 
The fans in attendance at the Dimitrios Peristerakis sports hall in Naxos on the one hand felt sad about the defeat of their team but they surely considerate themselves lucky for the 70 minutes of high-level Volleyball produced by one of the most decorated clubs in the history of the sport. It’s worth saying that in the first set the Russian team got away with a 24-19 lead but NAXOS almost drew level with their good defence and two points scored on Athanasia Totsidou’s serve. However, Uralochka clawed back and finished the set at 25-23 on a terrific hit killed by Kseniia Ilchenko.
 
After that, even though NAXOS got briefly to the front in the second set (5:3), Uralochka imposed their class and eventually brought the match to an end in three sets.

In spite of this loss, the local audience deserved a standing ovation to the players of Pannaxiakos. Their mentor Atanas Petrov said: “I am satisfied with the performance of my players, we played well and our dream to compete in the European Cups is not finished yet as we still have another match to go next week in Russia.”

Uralochka’s legendary head coach Nikolay Karpol said: “It was a close match for the opening set and I have to praise the fans here in Naxos who created a great ambiance for this game. The next match coming up in Russia won’t be an easy one for either side.”

Click here for more info including detailed stats of the match

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