This is Blair Lambert’s VolleyballMag.com weekly men’s professional volleyball report, featuring Americans around the world. Got a note about a player or a comment for Blair? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
CEV Champions League
A few matches took place on Tuesday, including a match in Pool B that featured American players on both teams. Micah Ma’a set Halkbank Ankara to a .421 attack average in a 25-16, 35-33, 25-22 victory over the Berlin Recycling Volleys. Cody Kessell came off the bench in the second and third sets for Berlin but did not score.
Asseco Resovia Rzeszów fell back into third place after going five sets with Trefl Gdańsk last week. TJ DeFalco led with 20 kills (.333) and a block in the 20-25, 25-23, 23-25, 25-19, 15-13 victory.
LUK Lublin got swept by PGE Skra Bełchatów 25-15, 25-22, 25-17 over the weekend. Jeff Jendryl scored six points in the middle on four kills (.571) and two blocks. Nicolas Szerszen led Lublin with 11 kills and an ace. Dustin Watten finished with 41 percent positive and 22 percent perfect passes.
Indykpol AZS Olsztyn beat Cerrad Czarni Radom 25-20, 25-22, 25-18 in Matt West’s Polish debut. Taylor Averill hit .875 with seven kills and three blocks. Josh Tuaniga set Olsztyn to a .421 hitting percentage and put away two kills. West did not play for Radom.
ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Kozle knocked Jastrzębski Coal out of first place with a 25-20, 19-25, 21-25, 25-22, 15-11 victory. Dave Smith was back in the lineup after a long rehabilitation. He scored on five kills (.556), one block, and one ace. Erik Shoji put in a 62 percent positive and 38 percent perfect passing performance.
Resovia finished the first half of the season on Monday with a 26-24, 25-16, 25-23 sweep of GKS Katowice on Monday. DeFalco with 16 points on 11 kills (.733), three aces, and two blocks.
Jake Hanes scored 11 points for BBTS Bielsko-Biała in a 25-21, 25-19, 25-15 loss to Ślepsk Malow Suwałki. Hanes finished with 10 kills (.077) and a block.
Micah Christenson set Zenit Kazan to a .517 hitting percentage in a 25-23, 25-15, 25-12 victory over Fakel Novy Urengoy. He also scored on a kill and a block.
Matt Anderson led Zenit Saint Petersburg with 22 points in a 23-25, 25-15, 25-21, 25-16 victory over ASK. Anderson, who continues to play at opposite, hit .441 while earning 18 kills, three blocks and an ace.
Davide Gardini scored two points on a kill and an ace as a substitute in every set for Pallavolo Padova in a 26-24, 25-17, 21-25, 25-20 defeat to Gas Sales Bluenergy Piacenza.
Halkbank Ankara climbed back into first place with a 25-16, 25-17, 25-15 win over Cizre Bld. Micah Ma’a set Halkbank to a .465 hitting percentage. He also scored on two aces and a block.
Arkas Spor beat Spor Toto 25-20, 25-19, 25-20. Dan McDonnell scored five points on four kills (.667) and a block.
Around the globe
Japan: The Japanese V-League is on hiatus until January. The final round of Emperor’s Cup is taking place until December 18. This is a knock-out tournament. Aaron Russell returned to action after an injured ankle, and his JT Thunders Hiroshima team is into the semifinals this Saturday after victories over Chuo University and Panasonic Panthers last weekend. The tournament is not run by the V-League, so no statistics were available.
China: Thomas Jaeschke scored 11 points for the second consecutive match in a 25-18, 25-21, 25-14 win for Beijing over Henan. Jaeschke had six kills, four aces, and a block. Max Holt scored on five kills (.833) and a block.
Holt with three aces the next day in Beijing’s 25-15, 25-17, 25-21 victory over Fujian. He also added five kills (.500) to his point total. Jaeschke finished with 13 kills (.600), two aces and a block.
France: Day 12 of the French Ligue A opened up last Friday with Chaumont defeating Montpellier 25-22, 28-26, 25-21. Patrick Gasman led with four blocks to go along with five kills (.000) in the victory.
Tyler Mitchem has his most productive night of his young pro career with a nine-kill (.750), four-block performance in Plessis Robinson’s 19-25, 27-25, 22-25, 25-18, 18-16 win over Toulouse.
Kyle Russell was back on the floor for Arago de Sète after an ankle injury and had 13 kills and two aces in a 25-16, 25-23. 25-16 defeat to Paris.
Saint Nazaire earned a 25-18, 25-18, 25-23 victory over Narbonne last weekend. Kyle Ensing Scored 13 points on nine kills, three aces and a block in his second-straight match hitting less than .200. Quinn Isaacson set the team to .324 hitting percentage while contributing a kill.
Germany: SVG Lüneburg dropped its second match of the Bundesliga season last week when it fell 20-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-20 to VfB Friedrichshafen. Jordan Ewert was the teams’s second-leading scorer with 22 points from 21 kills (.375) and an ace. Joe Worsley set the team to a .325 hitting percentage while scoring from a kill and an ace. Gage Worsley passed 50 percent positively and 17 perfectly.
Lüneburg recovered to defeat VCO Berlin 25-13, 25-11, 25-16. Joe Worsley got the night off and Colton Cowell was out ill. Ewert finished with eight kills (.375), three aces and a block. Gage Worsley passed 55 percent positively and 27% perfectly.
Berlin beat TSV Haching München 25-14, 25-16. 25-14. Kessel got the start at outside hitter and had 10 kills (.381) and three blocks.
Netzhoppers KW Bestensee lost 23-25, 25-20, 30-28, 25-19 to Helios Grizzlys Giesen last weekend. Ray Barsemian led the team with 21 kills (.368). Max Chamberlain scored on seven kills and an ace. Randy Deweese was used as a serving substitute in the second and had a kill.
James Shaw came off the bench in the second set for WWK Volleys Herrsching in a 25-19, 25-19, 25-20 loss to SWD powervolleys Duren. He started the third set and set the team to a .136 attack average while earning two kills.
Spain: CV Guagas moved to 11-0 with a 25-17, 25-21, 21-25, 25-19 win over Léleman Conqueridor Valencia. Matt Knigge scored on 11 kills (.474), two blocks and an ace. Brandon Rattray was used as a substitute in each set, finishing with five kills, one block and an ace.
Greece: Corey Chavers scored eight points for AOP Kifisias in a 25-21, 25-19, 25-18 defeat to league-leading Olympiakos. He had six kills (.095), a block and an ace.
Finland: Michael Michelau helped Savo Volley pull out a 25-16, 21-25, 25-17, 25-21 win over Raision Loimu and had 10 kills, three blocks and an ace.
Michelau scored 25 points in a 27-29, 25-23, 25-18, 20-25, 15-7 win against TUTO Volley with 22 kills and three aces. Kisiel was used as a substitute in the second and fourth sets, scoring two points from two kills.
Daniel Wetter had 12 kills (.529), two aces and a block in a 25-20, 23-25, 32-30, 25-19, 15-12 loss by Perungan Pojat to the Vantaa Ducks. The next day he registered three kills, one block, and one ace in a 25-22, 23-25, 25-17, 25-16 defeat to Raision Loimu.
Greg Petty’s four kills, two blocks and an ace helped Akaa-Volley defeat Kyky-Betset 25-18, 25-19, 25-20. Petty’s team is in third position but has the same record as league-leading VaLePa.
Czech Republic: Odolena Voda fell to Zlín 21-25, 25-17, 25-21, 25-21. Tommy Carmody led with five blocks to go along with four kills in the defeat.
Switzerland: JT Hatch came off the bench in the first set for Lausanne UC and stayed in in a 25-20, 19-25, 20-25, 25-14, 15-13 defeat to Volley Schönenwerd. Hatch scored on nine kills (.429) with no errors. He also contributed a block and an ace.
Israel: Josh Ayzenburg and Sam Burgi remained undefeated as Maccabi Tel Aviv beat Maccabi Ashdod 25-22, 25-16, 25-23. Ayzenburg passed 47% positively and 20% perfectly. Burgi was used as a substitute in the third set and finished with a kill.
Maccabi Hod HaSharon stayed in second place with a 25-21, 25-18, 25-15 victory over Hapoel SVA Rehovot. Andy Koyfman finished with three kills (.000), two blocks and one ace in the win.
Denmark: Daniel Matheney scored 16 points in the middle for VK Vestsjælland in a 24-26, 25-23, 25-22, 22-25, 15-9 loss to Ikast KFUM. He had 13 kills and three blocks. Matheney scored on seven kills and three aces when his team fell to ASV Elite 26-24, 25-27, 22-25, 30-28, 15-10.
Patrick Ross scored 20 points for Nordenskov UIF in a 27-25, 25-16, 20-25, 23-25, 17-15 win over Marienlyst-Fortuna Volley. He hit .636 on his way to 18 kills to go along with two aces.
Seamus McDonaghl set Hvidovre VK to a .292 hitting percentage and chipped in two kills in a 25-22, 25-18, 25-21 victory over Midelfart VK. Chris Hall put down two blocks while setting Middelfart to a .167 attack average.
Baltic League: Barrus Võru VK dropped a 25-22, 25-27, 11-25, 25-18, 15-11 decision to Parnu VK. Garrett Zlg started the fifth set and set the team to a -.188 hitting percentage. He also scored a point from a block. Matt Slivinski scored 22 points from 19 kills (.302) and three blocks.
Club World Championships
Sir Safety Perugia remained undefeated in all competitions this year, beating Itas Trentino 20-25, 25-23, 27-25, 25-19 in an all-Italian final. Wilfredo Leon led Perugia with 13 kills, three aces and a block. Simone Gianelli, setter for Perugia, was named the MVP of the tournament. This was the second time both Leon and Gianelli have won this tournament. Leon won with Zenit Kazan in 2017, and Gianelli won with Trentino in 2018. It is also worth noting that Gianelli also won the MVP award that the FIVB World Championships this summer when Italy beat Poland in the finals.