Canadian beach volleyballers sizzling at FIVB World Juniors

HALIFAX - August 30, 2012.
Number-one seeds Taylor Pischke of Winnipeg and Melissa Humana-Paredes of Toronto completed an impressive preliminary round to advance directly to the round of 16 on Thursday at the FIVB World Junior Volleyball Championships.

Pischke and Humana-Paredes defeated Yael Losan and Viktoria Nesterov of Israel 21-9, 21-7 to finish the prelims in first place with a perfect 2-0 mark. The Canadians did not only allow more than nine points in any of their four sets.

“There is a lot of tough competition here in Halifax,” said Humana-Paredes. “It’s going to be a dog fight, but a good one. Playing with Taylor makes us a different team than in the past. Taylor is a permanent blocker and is a huge force and I am a defender and a finesse player so I think we will be a factor as the tournament moves forward. We definitely have a good start in winning our pool and putting us into the second round of elimination.”

There was also good news for Charlotte Sider and Julia Hamer, both of Toronto who won their final preliminary round match to finish at 1-2 and third spot in pool H. They advance to the first round of the playoffs.

Julie Longman and Sophie Bukovec, also both of Toronto as well as Hillary Monette of New Minas, N.S., and Meaghan MacDougall of Hammond Plains, N.S., did not advance.

Great start for Canadian men

Preliminary round action got underway in the men’s tournament. Number-one seeds Ben Chow of Surrey, B.C., and Nick Del Bianco of Coquitlam, B.C. won their opening match 21-13, 21-16 over Mateo Iwanowski and Lisandro Rouzic of Argentina.

Sixth-seeds Dallas Keith of Toronto and Garrett May of London, Ont.,opened with two wins as did Aaron Nusbaum of Aurora, Ont., and Grant O’Gorman of Toronto.

“We are looking good so far,” said May playing at his fourth world juniors. “The first match in these tournaments is so tough because you don’t know what to expect for sure. We came out strong today but we will need to keep it up because this year’s field is as good or better than last year’s was.”

The world juniors are being held through Sunday at the purpose-built beach volleyball complex on the Salter Lot of the Halifax Waterfront for the second straight year after a wildly successful tournament in 2011.

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