This match will most probably show the number 2 (after Cuba) in the Tokuyama pool of the 1998 World Championship.The result was a mix of individual errors and small misunderstandings in the first phase of set 1.Two strong blocks and accurate defense on the Italian side created the first gap in the score 6-2. With strong transition play Italy was able to enlarge the difference 10-2. Good blocking by Anna Mello and keen setting of Maurizia Cacciatori work out well. The USA had organization problems on court. The time-out by Coach Michael Haley could not turn the losing momentum into a winning one ( 15-7). USA Mickisha Hurley tried everything to get her team back on track . By a good personal performance and great will-power she pushed her team to the first 1-3 lead. Italy anticipated quickly by stiff blocks and back-row attacks by Anna Mello 5-3. After spectacular rally-play it was still Italy that run the show in the second set (15-4) In the third chapter of this match it was again Italy taking "the best of the action" taking a 4-1 and 8-1 lead. It was interesting to see that Headcoach Frigoni of Italy used the new FIVB-rule that gives the coach freedom to move in the zone of the players-bench. He was "walking and talking" instructing his team to finish the work for today. Unfortunately for the USA team it happened this way. Italy won also the third set (15- 3)
Question to the winning team ITA: What do you think enabled you to win today. The Captain: Ms. Maurizia Cacciatori Compared to yesterday's result, we think we played really well today. Most of all, our blocking and attacking were great. How do you feel going into tomorrow's match against Cuba. The Head Coach: Angiolino Frigoni I am very satisfied with today's result. I don't think much about tomorrow's match. It might be hard, but we will just do a good play, which is our only goal for now. Question to the losing team USA: What do you think were the causes of today's loss The Captain: Ms. Salima Davidson We didn't play well today; probably it was our worst play in the long time. As a team, we were confident enough, and I think our serves were good today. However, our offensive running and attacking went really bad. How do you plan to approach tomorrow's match with Bulgaria The Head Coach: Michael Haley We will just do our homework and try our best. I know Bulgaria will try their best, too, and hopefully we are capable to win. That is the only way to win. Also, receiving needs to be improved. Question to the Italian Captain: You must have enjoyed the match today. Did you analyze the American team? Answer: Yes, before the match, we always analyze the opponent. Question to Ms. Anna Vania Mello: Your performance of back attacking and blocking today were beautiful. I think you are the one who changed the current of the 1st set and finally brought the team to the victory. Answer: Attacking is very important in the volleyball match. I am glad that I tried my best today, and that it worked very well. Question to Ms. Simona Rinieri: Your play was very good. We really enjoyed your play today. Answer: I agree that we did well today. I relax and enjoy playing volleyball in the World Championships this time. Question to Ms. Salima Davidson: We think your play last evening was very good compared to today. Do you think that the reason of today's loss is that your team members are relatively young Answer: I don't think our play last night was better than today. It was just a bad day for us today, and I am very disappointed. Italy and USA always play back and forth: In Montreal, in the Grand Prix and so on, and I really hoped to win this time. I don't think the reason of today's loss is that we are pretty young. The reason of the loss is simply that we could not do our best as a team.