Super Lega 2022 - News

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Trentino players celebrate their second victory against Lube with their home fans

The 2022-2023 SuperLega Credem Banca Finals feature some of the most talented young offensive players in international volleyball, but it was 38-year-old Matey Kaziyski who stepped up again to lead Itas Trentino to their second victory against Cucine Lube Civitanova on Sunday.

The legendary Bulgarian, who was recently included in his country’s national team after more than ten years away, was the top scorer in the duel between the teams for the second time in three matches, and played a big role in Trentino’s straight-set (25-17, 25-20, 25-16) victory that gave the team a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five series against the defending champions.

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Trentino will have their first opportunity to end the series and secure their fifth Scudetto on Friday, May 12, in Civitanova Marché, when the teams will meet for the fourth time in 12 days. If Lube manage to win and extend the series, the fifth and decisive duel will be held on Wednesday, May 17, in Trento.

On Sunday, Kazisyski, who had tallied 22 points in Trentino’s 3-1 win on match one, on Monday, had another excellent performance, producing a match-high 18 points with 14 kills and four aces, the most among both teams.

Star outside hitter Alessandro Michieletto also had a remarkable night, getting ten kills to go with impressive five blocks in his 15-point performance. Serbian middle blocker Marko Podraščanin also produced in double digits, getting ten points (eight kills, one block, one ace).

The first sweep in the series saw a dominant Trentino overcome Lube in every single stat, leading in kills (40 to 35), blocks (nine to two), aces (eight to zero) and opponent errors (18 to 16).

“I think our 3-2 defeat to Lube on Thursday gave us the fuel we needed to play more aggressively today,” Kazisyki reflected. “We had a lot more energy today and the amazing atmosphere our fans created certainly played a big role in it. Every time I get to play in this stadium with so many people in attendance, it brings me great memories.”

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Lube had no answers for Kaziyski, who led Trentino to their second victory in the series

Lube, on the other hand, left Trento with nothing to celebrate as, besides having great difficulty against Trentino, the defending champions also saw star opposite Ivan Zaytsev leave the court in the first set with a shoulder injury.

His substitute, Gabi Garcia, came off the bench to score nine points (eight kills, one block), but the fact that outside hitter Marlon Yant and him were Lube’s top scorers in the encounter shows that it was a difficult night for the team coached by Gianlorenzo Blengini.

“What really frustrated me was that we gave up on the match,” middle blocker Enrico Diamantini commented. “Of course we had to deal with several problems, some of which were of a physical nature, but we should have tried anyway. When Zaytsev left, we lost our balance, but we are a talented team and could have done better despite his absence.”

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