Ufa, Russia, June 7, 2019 – Gabriele Nelli led Italy to a convincing 3-1 (25-23, 13-25, 25-20, 25-23) win over USA on the opening day of the second weekend of the 2019 FIVB Men’s Volleyball Nations League, scoring a match-high 28 points.
The 28 points of Italy’s 25-year-old opposite balanced out the 24 scored by his American counterpart Benjamin Patch.
USA tried to outserve the Italians (and indeed served 9 aces to 6), but in the end the European side prevailed even while trailing the Americans in total points, 88-91.
It was Italy’s third win in four matches. USA, hosts of the Final Six in Chicago from July 10-14, have now dropped to a 1-3 record.
The second weekend of the men’s VNL had previously opened with some exciting action, including an all-time high blocking performance by Poland against France. The reigning world champions went down in four to France, but registered 19 blocks, bettering the previous team record of 18 set last year by Italy in their 2-3 defeat to Korea.
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