Canada's men's volleyball team fared better than in their tournament-opener, but still suffered a 3-1 loss to France at the 2019 Summer Universiade on Sunday afternoon at Nocera’s Palacoscioni.
Schedule & Results
FISU.TV (Semifinals and finals only)
“We did better for sure,” said Team Canada’s captain George Hobern without hesitation. “One major thing that we struggled with yesterday was serving and I thought today we definitely improved on that, so it’s a step in the right direction for our team. We got caught not penetrating enough on our blocks and a lot of balls were coming down on our side. But overall, I thought we played a pretty solid match.
“Each game, our team keeps getting better, but we need to improve our consistency and our energy levels and that will hopefully help us get a first win in the pool play.”
Just like the previous night against Brazil, Canada made several service errors in the first set, allowing France to build a 16-12 lead at the technical timeout. The trench kept getting wider, and Les Bleus easily took the frame by a score of 25-18.
The Canadians were better in the second, but again, they were missing some key services. Nonetheless, they were still in the game at the technical break, back only two points at 16-14.
It was an ace by Dylan Mortensen that gave Canada its first lead of the set, at 22-21. The two teams then traded points, until France hit an attack out of bounds to allow the Red and White to level the match at 1-1, on a score of 27-25.
The Canadians could not take advantage of this momentum in the third set though, dominated by the French. They were already leading 16-9 at the technical break, and won the frame by 25-17.
Despite several great upsurges by France in the fourth, the Canadians refused to give up, as they erased an early 9-4 deficit. The French, however, completed the match with a 25-20 win.
Craig Ireland and Pierce Johnson were the most productive in attack with nine kills each. Johnathan Moate had four blocks.
The Canadians will be back in action for the third game of their round-robin tournament on Monday against Iran (0-2) at 8:30 a.m. EDT / 5:30 a.m. PDT (2:30 p.m. local).