Russia inspires local fans with a straight-set win over Belgium


Russian Team celebrates their victory over Belgium in the match on Saturday

Kaliningrad, Russia, June 11, 2016 – Russian team outclasses Belgium in a straight-set victory (25-20, 25-15, 25-16) in Kaliningrad on Saturday.

The victory allows Russia to continue their dominant FIVB World Grand Prix streak, while also taking revenge for their 2015 loss to Belgium - their only World Grand Prix defeat in the 12 last matches against European teams. 

At the beginning of the match the home side struggled to find their rhythm until a double block of Nataliya Goncharova and Irina Zaryazhko helped Russia reduce the gap in the score to 3-4. Yana Shcherban and her powerful wide spikes helped Russia maintain a slight lead over the course of the set. The first set ended 25-20 after a powerful block by Kseniia Ilchenko

The second set saw Russia dominate from start to finish. Belgium did not make things difficult for the home team with their multiple errors. One of these ended the set, when Celine Van Gestel saw her ball fly out of bounds to make it 25-15. 

The final set meant more of the same with Russia controlling the play and quickly grabbing an imposing lead at 12-6. Even a good service streak by Belgium, which gave them three consecutive points, was not enough to make the set close. In the end Nathalie Lemmens sent the ball into the net to end the set at 25-16.
The top scorer for the winning team was Yana Shcherban with 10 points, while Belgium's Charlotte Leys finished the match with 9.


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