Manager, Media Relations and Publications
ANAHEIM, Calif. (April 13, 2009) – The Turkish volleyball league has reached the finals, which will pit Istanbul Buyuksehir Belediye, which features U.S. outside hitter Scott Touzinsky (St. Louis, Mo.) and Ryan Millar (Palmdale, Calif.) at middle blocker, against U.S. opposite Brook Billings (Santa Barbara, Calif.) and his team Fenerbahce.
Istanbul Buyuksehir Belediye won its semifinal 3-0 over Ziraat Bankasi. Fenerbahce had a tougher time, needing a fifth match to defeat Arkas Spor, the team that won the regular season league title. Fenerbahce won that fifth match on Sunday, 3-0 behind 23 points on 23 kills from Billings.
The finals will be a best-of-five series.
The best-of-five semifinals of the Russian Super League playoffs have begun. On Monday (April 13), Zenit Kazan, featuring U.S. setter Lloy Ball (Fort Wayne, Ind.) and opposite Clay Stanley (Honolulu) defeated Fakel Novy Urengoi, including U.S. setter Kevin Hansen (Newport Beach, Calif.) and outside hitter Sean Rooney (Wheaton, Ill.), in the first match, 3-2.
Stanley led all scorers in the match with 20 points on 16 kills, two blocks and two aces. Ball added five points on three kills, one block and one ace.
Rooney scored 12 points for Fakel on 12 kills. Hansen scored two points on two blocks.
The teams will play again on Tuesday (April 14) and Saturday (April 18).
Click here for photos of Zenit Kazan traveling.
Click here for Kazan’s photos from the match.
Iskra Odintsovo is playing Dynamo Moscow in the other semifinal match.
In the matches to determine the fifth-eighth places in the league, U.S. outside hitter Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) and his team Lokomotiv Novosibirsk defeated U.S. opposite Gabe Gardner (San Clemente, Calif.) and his team Ural Ufa, 3-2 (22-25, 23-25, 25-23, 25-17, 15-13). Gardner scored 18 points on 17 kills and one block. Priddy scored nine points on seven kills and two blocks.
In the other fifth-eighth place match, Lokomotiv Belogorie, which features U.S. libero Rich Lambourne (Tustin, Calif.), beat Gazprom Ugra, 3-1 (25-17, 25-18, 23-25, 25-16).
U.S. middle blocker Tom Hoff (Park Ridge, Ill.) and his Greek team Olympiacos have reached the semifinals of the Hellenic league playoffs and won their first match on Monday (March 13), defeating EA Patron Lux, 3-0 (25-16, 25-22, 25-23). Hoff was on the roster for the match but did not play.
The teams will play again on March 15 and March 21.
League-winner Panathinaikos defeated Iraklis Liu Jo, 3-2 (25-18, 14-25, 21-25, 25-19, 15-12) in the other semifinal.
In matches to determine fifth-eighth place, AO Finikas Sirou, featuring U.S. middle blocker Matt Denmark (Edmond, Okla.), will play GS Lamia in a series beginning on March 15. PAOK, which includes U.S. players Evan Patak (Pleasanton, Calif.), Theo Brunner (Ridgefield, Conn.) and Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.), will face Aris Marmouris AE in a series beginning March 15.
Sisley Treviso, featuring U.S. outside hitter Riley Salmon (League City, Texas) lost its three playoff matches to Italian regular season league winner Lube Banca Marche Macerata and is done for the season.
Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) and two-time Olympian Kevin Barnett have set up an online radio blog called The Net Live. Their next broadcast is scheduled for April 15 at 10 a.m. PT.
You can hear it by clicking here.
World League Tickets
Tickets for the World League matches in San Jose, Calif., (June 26-27 against China) and Wichita, Kan., (July 17-18 against Netherlands) are now on sale.
For San Jose tickets, click here.
For Wichita tickets, click here.