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Club leagues wind down ahead of FIVB season - but not yet in Italy

 

Tsvetan Sokolov punches through the block of Fabio Ricci and Aleksandar Atanasijevic as he leads Cucine Lube Civitanova to a win over Sir Safety Conad Perugia that extended the Italian Superleague final series to a fifth game.

Lausanne, Switzerland, May 12, 2019 - The crowning of the 2019 Italian champions has been postponed until Tuesday, after top scorer on 14 points Tsvetan Sokolov of Bulgaria and match MVP Osmany Juantorena led Cucine Lube Civitanova to a 3-0 (25-20, 25-21, 25-19) win over Sir Safety Conad Perugia to extend the best-of-five final series of the men's Superleague to a fifth game - though club leagues elsewhere are wrapping up with titles claimed in epic clashes.

With the Italian series now tied at 2-2, a champion will definetely be forthcoming on Tuesday, when the two sides clash again at Perugia's PalaBarton.

Robertlandy Simon (11) and Yoandy Leal (10) also scored in double digits for Lube, while Wilfredo Leon and Aleksandar Atanasijevic bagged 12 and 11 points respectively for Perugia.

Elsewhere in men's club action this past week, as competitions wind down ahead of the start of the FIVB season with the 2019 Volleyball Nations League later this month:



• Olympiacos Piraeus claimed their 29th championship title in Greece sweeping PAOK Thessaloniki in the best-of-five final series after only three matches. Canada's Gavin Schmitt who scored a match-high 20 points and the Netherlands' Jeroen Rauwerdink who was named the season's MVP powered Olympiacos to the deciding win 3-0 (26-24, 25-23, 25-23). Bulgaria's Todor Aleksiev and Rauwerdink scored 13 points, with Niels Klapwijk of the Netherlands bringing in 20 points for PAOK.
• VB Tours claimed the title in the Men's A League in France wrapping up the best-of-three series against Chaumont after two matches. Hermans Engleskalns of Latvia top-scored for Tours with 20 points in the deciding 3-0 (25-15, 25-22, 25-12) win that clinched the title. Bulgaria's Martin Atanasov was best scorer of Chaumont with 10 points.
• Berlin Recycling Volleys picked up their fourth straight men's Bundelsiga title in Germany, after a 3-2 (25-17, 25-21, 19-25, 23-25, 16-14) away win in the fifth game of the best-of-five final series against VfB Friedrichshafen. USA's Benjamin Patch was the leading force behind Berlin's win, scoring 29 points, with fellow American Jeffrey Jendrik II and Germany's Moritz Reichert adding another 13 each. Greece's Sakis Protopsaltis led the scoring for VfB Friedrichshafen with 24 points. It was the last match on the Friedrichshafen bench for coach Vital Heynen who continues to lead the Polish national team.
Funvic Taubate claimed a historic first ever Superleague title in Brazil after beating Sesi Sao Paulo in the fifth game of the best-of-five final series.
• Earlier in the week, in Russia's Superleague Kuzbass Kemerovo put an end to Zenit Kazan's five-year dominiation clinching the best-of-five series after four matches.



• In women's action, after finishing runners-up four times, Allianz MTV Stuttgart won the German Bundesliga title for the first time in their history, edging SCC Palmberg Schwerin 3-2 (25-12, 25-20, 14-25, 24-26, 15-11) in the fifth game of the best-of-five final series. Stuttgart were led by match and season MVP Krystal Rivers of the USA who scored 29 points on the night, with her fellow-American Sarah Wilhite adding another 15. Yet another American, McKenzie Adams, was Schwerin's best scorer on 19 points.
• Cannes claimed the title in France's A League with a 3-1 (25-21, 20-25, 25-13, 25-23) win over Nantes that clinched the best-of-three final series after two matches. Serbia's Adela Helic scored a match-high 18 points for Cannes.
• Previously, in Italy, Imoco Volley Conegliano were crowned Italian champions as they wrapped up the best-of-five final series of the Women's A1 League after only three matches against Igor Gorgonzola Novara.

Quick links - Volleyball:
FIVB.com - Volleyball Nations League
FIVB.com - Volleyball
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