Lemanski blocks off Canada to lead Poland to first win in Varna


Lemanski and his teammates celebrate another great point against Canada

Varna, Bulgaria, June 11, 2017 – Bartolomiej Lemanski kill-blocked the Canadian spikers as many as five times to help Poland earn their first victory at the FIVB Volleyball World League tournament in Varna and overall third on the road to the finals in Brazil. The world champs managed a 3-1 (25-21, 27-25, 20-25, 25-19) win against the North American opponents.

Lemanski scored a total of 12 points for the winning team, as many as his teammate Mateusz Bieniek. They were outscored by Poland’s Dawid Konarski and Canada’s Ryley Brendan Barnes, who topped the charts with 15 points each, and by Jason Derocco, who tallied 13 points for coach Stephane Antiga’s squad.

With this victory Poland kept the tradition to beat Canada by 3-0 or 3-1 every time the two teams meet in an official international fixture. This has happened in all five World League and 11 total matches the two sides have played so far.

The Canadians looked a little bit confused without their captain John Gordon Perrin and the world champs took a huge eight-point advantage at 18-10. With good defence and offence Canada made a great comeback and was only two points behind at 20-22, but in the end Konarski’s block-out spike finished the set at 25-21 Poland’s way.

Canada responded well in the second set, took control and surged to a 22-18 lead, but the conclusive moments belonged to the Polish players. Bartlomiej Lemanski stopped Sharone Vernoon-Evans with a monster block to make it 23-23 and, after a perfect float serve ace by Aleksander Sliwka, Poland were one point ahead. Poland’s captain Michal Kubiak, who had returned to the court after the ankle injury he sustained during the match on Friday, was the man for the important points in the end of the second set, which came at 27-25 to double his team’s lead.

Canada started to play really well in defence in the third set, which gave them some opportunities on counter-attack and they used them. Nicholas Hoag scored a well-directed ace near the line to shape up Canada’s 25-20 win.

A powerful spike through the middle by captain Kubiak and a real masterpiece near the net by Fabian Drzyzga made it 16-13 in the fourth set. Through the end Poland stayed in control of the scoreboard to win it by 25-19 and close the match.


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