Pavan/Humana-Paredes claim Canada’s first ever world champs gold
In an emotional gold medal match, Canada’s Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes claimed Canada’s first ever world championships medal – and it is a golden one!
Against the American A-Team Alix Klineman and April Ross, the Canadians had to go through a rollercoaster, especially in the first set. The A-Team started strong to take an early 7:4 lead. But then Pavan/ Humana-Paredes came up with an incredible 10:0 run that the US girls could just not stop. Humana-Paredes showed incredible defense in the backcourt converting perfectly from defense to attack. Surprisingly enough, after the tech time at 14:7 for Canada, the A-Team started a four points run to make a comeback in the first set. The score was all tied at 18:18 but the Canadians regained their strength and finally converted their set point to 23:21.
The second set was close again but this time no team allowing the other team a points run. Score was again tied at 19:19 and it took the Canadians three match points to finally claim the gold medal (23:21, 23:21). Being overwhelmed by emotions, the Canadians honored the Hamburg crowds:
“Hamburg! We have been battling all week and you made this so special. This what we play volleyball for.”
In the men’s semifinals, Tri Bourne and Trevor Crabb were not able to stop Russian highfliers Krasilnikov/ Stoyanovskiy. Having knocked-out Tri’s brother Taylor and Jake Gibb in the quarterfinals, the Russians showed another flawless performance in the first set. Siding-out in almost 90% of occasions, Krasilnikov/ Stoyanovskiy won the first set 21:13. It already looked like an easy win in the second when the Americans started fighting back. Several mistakes from Krasilnikov gave away the second set to Bourne/Crabb. The US boys took an early lead at 7:5 in the tie-break but Stoyanovskiy came up with two consecutive ace serves to turn the tables again. An eight points run shocked the Americans and the Russians converted their fourth match point to advance to the gold medal match.
In the final they will face the home town boys Julius Thole and Clemens Wickler who beat Norwegian top-seeds Anders Mol and Christian Sorum in a tie-break thriller. Playing the first set with a side-out percentage of 87, the Vikings won the first set 21:17. But with a great Clemens Wickler in the backcourt, the Germans fought back to claim the second set 21:16. In the tie-break, a lot of confusion occurred in the end due to a contested referee call that earned the Germans match point at 14:11. The crowd’s favorites converted their second match point to win 15:12 and to earn a spot in the gold medal match.