Danielle Cuttino hits against China/Volleyball World photo

The USA, with a completely different lineup Thursday than the one it had in a victory over Thailand on Wednesday, bolted to a one-set lead over China.

But China rallied for a 23-25, 25-23, 25-22, 25-19 victory in Volleyball Nations League play in Rio de Janeiro.

China’s Li Yingying led with 20 kills and 11 digs as her team took an important step in qualifying for the Paris Olympics.

Danielle Cuttino lead the USA with 16 kills, two blocks and an ace. Jordan Larson had 16 kills, a block and an ace and Avery Skinner had 12 kills, 14 digs, a block and an ace. Anna Hall added seven kills, a block and an ace.

Libero Justine Wong-Orantes had 11 digs and setter Lauren Carlini had eight to go with a block.

The Americans, who won in four over Thailand, play their third match in as many days when they face host Brazil on Friday. Also in Rio, Serbia plays Thailand and China faces Canada.

In Antalya, Türkiye, Japan plays Germany, France plays Poland and Italy plays Bulgaria.

In other matches Thursday, Italy beat Germany in four, Japan swept Bulgaria, Türkiye beat the Netherlands in four, Brazil swept Korea and Canada did the same to the Dominican Republic. Canada’s Alexa Gray, who played at BYU, had 16 kills, a block, an ace and 10 digs.


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