Canadians Garrett May and Sam Schachter win world junior volleyball title

ANYALA, Turkey – Garrett May and Sam Schachter, both of Toronto, defeated second-seeds Alvaro Filho and Vitor Felipe of Brazil 21-23, 21-16, 15-13 to win the gold medal on Sunday at the world junior championships in beach volleyball.

It is Canada’s first medal in the 10-year history of the tournament.

“It feels incredible,” said May, 18, about winning the 78-team tournament. “At first it was disbelief, but now we’re blabbering like a bunch of babies.”

May and Schachter completed the tournament with a 7-0 record and lost three sets overall. Besides the second seed Brazilians they also knocked off the sixth, seventh and 10th seeds this week.

Sunday’s 64-minute final was a nail-biter as the 18th seed Canadians showed an unwavering determination to get the victory against a team from the sport’s superpower nation. 

“Both teams played really solid,” said May, fourth last month at the world youth championships with Nick del Bianco of Surrey, B.C. “It was a battle of who could last the longest. But we always had the confidence we could win this tournament from the start. That was our goal.”

For the second straight match, Schachter needed a medical time-out because of the intense heat.

“All the teams here have great skills but we had incredible trust in each other and that was probably our biggest weapon,” said Schachter, who grew up in Richmond Hill, Ont. “We overcame some big obstacles, always had the toughest draws in the playoffs but we couldn’t be stopped.

“It was amazing.”

The Canadian pair land in Toronto on Monday afternoon.