Round 2 of the 2023 CEV Women’s Volleyball Champions League group stage set off with a couple of comebacks from a two-set deficit: one was in the Czech Republic and the other was in Hungary.
Twenty-six points from the emerging Russian star Vita Akimova, the highest-scoring CEV Champions League Volley | Women debutant ever, weren’t enough for France’s Volero Le Cannet to get the better of the Ukrainian side SC “Prometey“ Dnipro, who prevailed 3-2. It was the conclusion of a long (121 minutes) and hard-fought Pool B challenge, in which the hosts, Prometey (the hosts only on paper given that they play home matches in the Czech Republic due to the Russian invasion of their country), trailed 0-2 in sets but earned the win. Prometey got their first win, while this was Volero’s first defeat. Oleksandra Milenko tallied 20 points on the winning side, including 4 aces. Daria Velykokon made 4 blocks.
Only 48 hours after taking the bronze medal in the FIVB Club World Championship, Eczacıbaşı Dynavit İstanbul had to go back to the commitments in the Champions League. In Plovdiv, Bulgaria, against Maritza, the Turkish team easily beat the hosts 3-0 (25-20, 25-22, 25-19) in Pool E, despite all the starters having rested. Croatian Samanta Fabris took the opportunity to stand out for the ’Tigers, notching 12 points. The 16-year-old Iva Dudova (Best Scorer and Best Opposite of the last CEV U16 EuroVolley) top-scored Maritza with 11.
ŁKS Commercecon Łódź redeemed itself in the Champions League. The Polish Championship leaders unsuccessfully inaugurated the competition. After the defeat in the first round, they prevailed in the match in Pool D in Spain, defeating Tenerife La Laguna without losing a set. Italian opposite Valentina Diouf recorded 19 points for ŁKS. Slovenian Lana Ščuka had 79% reception (14 digs, 57% excellent), while Paulina Maj-Erwardt made 89% reception (18 digs, 61% excellent). Swiss Julie Lengweiler scored 10 for La Laguna. Patricia Llabrés had 91% reception (22 digs, 68% excellent).
Another Polish representative was successful in Round 2. Developres Rzeszów turned the score from 0-2 to 3-2 in Pool A’s match against Vasas Óbuda Budapest in Hungary. It’s good news but, at the same time, bad news for the team commanded by Stéphane Antiga. Losing a point against outsiders may have a high price at the end of the group stage. Serbian Jelena Blagojević top-scored for Developres with 19 points. Magdalena Jurczyk had 5 blocks, while Georgian Ann Kalandadze served 4 aces. Slovak Karolína Fričová was the most efficient player in Vasas, putting down 22 points.
Igor Gorgonzola Novara remained with full points in Pool C. It was all easy for the Italian side in the Serbian capital of Belgrade: they finished the away game on the court of Crvena Zvezda in three sets. The bravery of the home team against one of the favorites of the competition has to be stressed, even though they got swept. Zvezda managed to catch up with Novara’s 17-8 lead in the third set and tie it at 23-23 but failed to force one more set. Turk Ebrar Karakurt got unleashed with 25 points through an amazing 79% attack (23/29). Eleonora Fersino made 92% reception (13 digs, 1 error, 54% excellent). Tara Taubner scored 18 points on the losing side, including 4 blocks.
CEV Champions League Volley 2023 | Women, group stage, Round 2: