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08/11/2018 09:52
Three tiebreaks in #CEVChallengeCupW, titleholders Olympiacos rout Luxembourg vice-champions
2019 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup - Women

Luxembourg, November 8, 2018. The first stage of the 2019 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup – Women continued on Wednesday night with a number of matches – and as many as three tiebreaks won by European Cups rookies Interfreight ANTWERP LVT, Slavia EU BRATISLAVA and PSVBG SALZBURG. Titleholders Olympiacos PIRAEUS of Greece dropped only 16 points in the three sets they played against underdogs CHEV DIEKIRCH of Luxembourg.

Interfreight ANTWERP LVT (BEL) vs. Pölkky KUUSAMO (FIN) 3-2 (25-21, 25-19, 17-25, 24-26, 15-11)

•    The players from Antwerp caught a flying start to their historic debut in the European Cups, leading 6-2 and 13-8 in the first set. However, the visitors from Finland did not falter and fought their way back to lead 15-13. Sarah Coppens and Britt Ruysschaert helped the home team draw level at 19-all before ANTWERP edged ahead again with the help of Lotte Penders to win the first set 25-21.
•    The hosts came out with all guns blazing in the second set for a massive 8-2 lead before KUUSAMO closed in at 15-12. Coppens and Penders attacked very effectively and with good defence from Katrien Vanheusden, ANTWERP secured the second set at 25-19.
•    Jonna Wasserfaller and Trine Noer Kjelstrup set the pace for the visitors in the third set and after leading 18-15, Pölkky KUUSAMO emerged victorious at 25-17.
•    ANTWERP trailed 8-13 in the fourth set and despite their late surge, the hosts ended up losing it 24-26.
•    The home team fought their way back from 4-7 down in the tiebreak and with the help of their loud and passionate fans, they stormed to a 15-11 win to crown their European debut with success.
•    Trine Noer Kjelstrup and Lotte Penders top scored for KUUSAMO and ANTWERP, respectively, with 27 and 20 points to their name.

IBSA CV CCO PALMAS (ESP) vs. Vitéos NEUCHATEL Université (SUI) 0-3 (24-26, 23-25, 19-25)

•    Vitéos NEUCHATEL Université celebrated a relatively hard-fought 3-0 victory in Las Palmas.
•    The two teams exchanged the lead back and forth in the early stages of the first set; NEUCHATEL, however, played more effectively, especially with their attackers, to secure a 16-13 lead. Tiata Scambray was the real leader of the visiting team but PALMAS responded with Saray Manzano to close in at 20-21, before the Swiss team had the upper hand at 26-24.  
•    The second set was a very close affair up to 15-16 but some Spanish mistakes paved the way towards a small advantage for NEUCHATEL. Manzano and Lydia Alonso Carballo were able to draw level but some further mistakes made by PALMAS sealed a 25-23 win for the Swiss.
•    The third set was the more one-sided with PALMAS struggling to find their best game in attack and to close the early gap they had. NEUCHATEL, on the other hand, made very few mistakes and showed much consistency in their performance to secure a well-deserved 3-0 victory.

In other matches played on Wednesday night, titleholders Olympiacos PIRAEUS of Greece easily routed CHEV DIEKIRCH of Luxembourg 3-0 (25-4, 25-2, 25-12), Belgium’s Hermes OOSTENDE did almost the same with Portugal’s Kairos PONTA DELGADA (25-22, 25-18, 25-15) and Greece’s AO THIRAS claimed the ‘derby’ with AEL LIMASSOL of Cyprus without dropping a set as well (26-24, 25-20, 25-16). Elsewhere, Slovakia’s Slavia EU BRATISLAVA needed a tiebreak and almost two hours to edge Hungary’s JASZBERENY Volleyball Team (27-29, 25-18, 25-21, 25-27, 15-6) while Slovenia’s Formula Formis ROGOZA beat Hungary’s Vasas Obuda BUDAPEST 3-1 (25-16, 19-25, 25-17, 25-17). There was another tiebreak in Austria where PSVBG SALZBURG beat Czech Republic’s Dukla LIBEREC (17-25, 25-22, 23-25, 25-23, 15-10).

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