Super Lega 2022 - News

Lube 2504

Nikolov scored the game-winning ace and had 21 points in the decisive match against Milano

Cucine Lube Civitanova and Itas Trentino triumphed in the final chapter of the dramatic 2022-2023 SuperLega Credem Banca semifinals, eliminated Allianz Milano and Gas Sales Bluenergy Piacenza and will play for the Italian League Scudetto.

The first of the potential five matches of the SuperLega Finals series will be played on Sunday, April 30, at 18:00 local time (16:00 UTC), with Trentino at home. The next two matches are scheduled for the following Thursday and Sunday.

· Watch all SuperLega Credem Banca matches live or on demand on VBTV.

Defending champions Lube counted on the support of their fans in Civitanova Marche to stop SuperLega sensations Milano and end their amazing series with a strong 3-1 (27-25, 25-22, 23-25, 27-25) victory at home.

Bulgarian rising star Aleksandar Nikolov played a tremendous match on Tuesday, tallying a match-high 21 points (18 kills, two aces, one block) and scoring the game-winning point with an inch-perfect ace.

“I couldn’t believe at the end and got really emotional,” Nikolov reacted. “This is such an incredible team and the fans were fantastic today, pushing us forward the entire time. It’s been a long and complicated path for us, but we’re here, in the Finals. Now we have to prepare and be ready to fight for the title.”

Veteran opposite Ivan Zaytsev was another important offensive weapon for Lube, producing 17 points (15 kills, one ace, one block), two more than Cuban outside hitter Marlon Yant, who registered 15 (11 kills, two blocks, two aces).

Japanese star outside hitter Yuki Ishikawa played a brilliant match for Milano, firing an impressive 20 points (17 kills, one ace, two blocks). Cuban outside hitter Osniel Melgarejo and Argentinean middle blocker Agustin Loser delivered 15 points each.

Lube are among the winningest teams in the Italian League with seven titles (2005-2006, 2011-2012, 2013-2014, 2016-2017, 2018-2019, 2020-2021, 2021-2022) and will try to become just the third team to win four consecutive Italian titles. It will be the sixth straight and tenth overall appearance in the Finals for the defending champions.

Trentino 2504

Trentino fought back after consecutive losses and eliminated Piacenza

In the other series, Trentino were finally able to stop Piacenza and avoid what would have been another fantastic comeback from their rivals. After winning the first two matches of the series and seeing their opponents even it with back-to-back victories, the 2022 FIVB Men’s Club World Championship silver medallists secured a definite triumph in the duel, beating Piacenza 3-1 (18-25, 25-20, 25-17, 25-19) in Trento.

Star outside hitter Alessandro Michieletto was Trentino’s most effective player in the decisive match against Piacenza, producing 14 points (nine kills, three aces, two blocks). Two of the team’s most veteran players, Bulgarian opposite Matey Kaziyski and Serbian middle blocker Marko Podrascanin stepped up to register 11 points apiece.

“After everything we went through this season, we were confident our dream wouldn’t come to an end today,” Michieletto reflected. “I’m very proud because it wasn’t easy. Coming back to win the series after two losses was a challenge, but we approached it as a team and had the fans on our side. We felt the amazing atmosphere they created hee since we came out to warm up and we’re happy we gave them a victory.”

The match’s top scorer was Piacenza’s star opposite Yuri Romanò, who left the court with 17 points (14 kills, one ace, two blocks). Outside hitters Ricardo Lucarelli and Yoandy Leal had 12 and ten points, respectively.

With the victory, Trentino are back in the Italian League Finals for the first time since 2016-2017, when they finished second, and will compete for the Scudetto for the ninth time. The team from Northern Italy will be looking for its fifth national title, having won the SuperLega in 2007-2008, 2010-2011, 2012-2013 and 2014-2015.

It will be the fourth time Lube and Trentino meet in the SuperLega Finals – the defending champions won in 2011-2012 and 2016-2017, while the side from Trento came out on top in 2012-2013.

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