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United States Sweeps Canada in Semifinals


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, September 30, 2017 – The United States got a measure of revenge over Canada on Saturday with a 25-20, 25-22, 25-21 victory at the NORCECA Men’s Continental Championship at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.


The victory qualifies the U.S. Men (4-0) for the 2018 FIVB World Championship. They will play Dominican Republic (3-1) for the NORCECA title on Sunday at 5 p.m. MT.


Canada had defeated the United States the last three times they had played each other. But the U.S. came out confident in the first set and took a 12-9 lead that it increased to 19-13.


Canada kept the next two sets closer, but couldn’t get a significant lead.


The United States serving was tough as it finished with seven aces while Canada had none. The U.S. also led in spikes (35-32) and blocks (6-2).


U.S. outside hitter Aaron Russell led all scorers with 15 points on 15 spikes. Opposite Matt Anderson added 11 points on eight attacks and three aces.


Outside hitter Stephen Maar led Canada with 11 points.


U.S. Captain Micah Christenson: “It’s become a pretty awesome rivalry (between the U.S. and Canada). We’re in the same zone. We’ve played them a couple times over the past year and they’ve gotten the better of us. All credit to them. They are world class. I think our serve and pass game was great tonight. We put a lot of pressure on them with our serve.”


U.S. Head Coach John Speraw: “(Canada) has gotten so much better over the last four-eight years. They have some good young talent and they’ve beaten us recently. I thought our energy and focus was there throughout the entire match.”


Canada Captain Gordon Perrin: “(The U.S.) served really well. With this ball it’s very difficult to hold the serves. We were really bad in reception and we couldn’t run any plays. They played free and they definitely won the serve and pass game this time.”


Canada Coach Stephane Antiga: "We were (having issues) with our pass. We were trying to limit it. The USA served very well. We wanted to win this competition and to qualify for World Championships. Right now we focus on Mexico. We feel good. We want to win tomorrow. We are ready."