Korea women's volleyball quickly overcome by U.S. team

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Korea women's volleyball quickly overcome by U.S. team

The Korean national volleyball team is having a group huddle during the 2021 FIVB Women's Volleyball National League game against the United States on Monday in Rimini, Italy. [FIVB]

The Korean national volleyball team is having a group huddle during the 2021 FIVB Women's Volleyball National League game against the United States on Monday in Rimini, Italy. [FIVB]

 
The Korean national volleyball team lost in straight sets against the United States at the 2021 Women's Volleyball Nations League on Monday.
 
The United States women's volleyball team is known to be one of the very best, having won three silver and two bronze medals at the Summer Olympics — as opposed to Korea’s one bronze medal at the Montréal Summer Games in 1976.
 
The United States team also holds all Volleyball Nations League gold medals from 2018 and 2019. The women's Volleyball Nations League started in 2018.
 
With captain Kim Yeon-koung and veteran Lee So-young missing the game to rest before the next game, the United States were unstoppable.
 
The United States took the lead first in the first set, but Korea trailed close behind as the No. 1 team continued to make errors.
 
Korea caught up to tie the United States 13-13, and then again with 14-14, giving Korea a second chance to lead the match, but the strong opponent did not allow a comeback as Haleigh Washington’s two aces ended the first set 25-16. Ten of Korea’s 16 points were opponent error points.
 
Korea opened the scoring for the second set, but the United States seemed to have figured Korea out during the break, as they added six points in a row, leading Korea by five points from the start.
 
Yeum Hye-seon tried to turn things around with two consecutive serve aces, and at 7-16, coach Stefano Lavarini called a technical time out to draw up a comeback scheme.
 
However, with Korea still unable to get a good grasp on their opponent, the second set finished 25-12. In the second set, Korea had six attacks as opposed to the United States’ 11, two serve aces to the opponent’s three. Korea had no blocks, while the United States had five.
 
Korea went on to put up a good fight against the opponent in an attempt to push the game into a fourth set.
 
At 5-5, Korea tried hard to keep up, but with 66.3 kilometers (41.2 miles)-per-hour serves, 185 kilometers-per-hour spikes and high blocks, the difference in scores started to widen and the third set ended 15-25.
 
Korea's best scorers of the game were Pyo Seung-ju and Yuk Seo-young, with five points each, and the best scorer for the American team was Washington with 15. 
 
There was no doubt that the United States was worthy of coming out on top, scoring 37 attacks, 10 blocks and 10 serves total, as opposed to Korea’s 18 attacks, two blocks and four serves.
 
"Since we knew that they are a very strong team, we just tried to focus on having fun, but it was a really tough game,” Han Da-hye told the Volleyball World after the match.  
 
“They served very strong, and we couldn't receive their serve well. That was the biggest challenge."
 
The United States extended their winning streak to eight matches, remaining the only undefeated team at the Volleyball Nations League this season, whereas Korea sits at 15th out of 16 countries with its sixth consecutive loss as of press time.
 
Korea goes on to face Germany today at 6 p.m., or 1 a.m. tomorrow in Korea.

 
BY YUN SO-HYANG   [yun.sohyang@joongang.co.kr]
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