The USA women play Italy on Friday in the VNL quarterfinals. Just last Friday in Fukuoka, Japan, Italy beat the Americans in four sets in VNL. In the other quarterfinal Friday in Bangkok, Thailand, Poland plays Türkiye.

In quarterfinals Thursday, Japan swept China and Brazil swept Thailand. They will play in Saturday’s semifinals.

The men’s Olympic draw wil be conducted June 26 at the VNL finals in Łódź, Poland.

USA men edge Brazil

The USA men kept their VNL finals hopes alive with a 25-21, 18-25, 25-21, 22-25, 15-9 victory over Brazil Thursday in Manila, Philippines.

The Americans — who need some help from other outcomes — finish the third round with must-win matches Friday against Germany and Saturday again Japan.

Against Brazil, TJ DeFalco led again. After getting 30 kills Wednesday in a five-set loss to Iran, DeFalco had 18 kills and three aces and had eight digs, tied with setter Micah Christenson. Max Holt had nine kills, five blocks, five digs and two aces, Matt Anderson had 11 kills and a block and Taylor Averill had 10 kills and a block.

Brazil’s Alan Souza had 23 kills, a block and two aces. Lukas Bergmann had 17 kills and two aces and Ricardo Lucarelli had 11 kills and two aces.

Taylor Averill goes up for a Micah Christenson set against Brazil/Volleyball World photo


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