Amazing Villena spearheaded Spain to an unforgettable win over Germany
Leon, Mexico, June 17, 2017 - Only a week after their loss on the hands of Germany, now it was Spain the celebrating side as super-spiker Andrés Villena
led them to a 3-0 (26-24, 25-18, 25-22) win at 2017 World League Group 3 first semifinal clash in Leon, Mexico.
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Villena topped all the charts with an astonishing output of 22 points, as the only Spaniard to reach double figures. On Germany, Simon Hirsch
was the most prolific scorer with 16 kills, followed by Ruben Schott
’s 12 and Christian Fromm
’s 10 tallies.
With the win, Spain advanced to the gold medal match at their first time playing the Finals, while Germany failed to defend the second place achieved last year at home soil.
Though Spain grabbed a quick 3-0 in the opener, it took a lot more for them to win it. Germany rapidly answered via Marcus Böhme
and Hirsch, enabled a 7-point tie and then moved on to 13-10 and 16-14. However, Germany failed to emphasize the lead and Spain leveled the score with a massive block from Sergio Noda
, 21-21. Just a short while later, captain Jorge Fernández
delivered a fine short serve and Borja Ruiz
smashed the free ball of the 26-24.
Germany seemed demoralised after losing the previous set and they failed a handful of times, awarding Spain a solid 10-3 lead. Villena took the floor afterwards and enhanced to 15-7, while coach Andrea Giani tried several substitutions in Germany to change the tide. However, only Hirsch made some harm to the Spanish defence, but Borja Ruiz on the block and Villena’s spikes did the job for Spain. A failed German serve sealed the set 25-18.
Villena’s concert continued on the third chapter, while it was captain Fromm who carried the flag for Germany as the scores were leveled once again (9-9). It was a rock-solid point-by-point plot later on, with Spain only a few inches ahead, relying on Villena to 16-15. Hirsch sparked some hope in his side (18-16), but first Juan Manuel González
and then Villena made the crowd shout towards a 20-18 advantage. And it was captain Fernández the one closing the match, with a firm spike down the middle on 25-22.