VakifBank Istanbul Wins Third World Title


Unlock this video, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Both Turkish teams competing in the gold- and bronze-medal matches at the 2018 FIVB Women’s Club World Championships celebrated victory on Sunday. Now-three-time world champ VakifBank Istanbul defeated Minas Tenis Clube of Brazil in the championship match, and Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul swept Praia Clube to take third.

VakifBank’s 25-23, 25-21, 25-19 victory makes it the most decorated team in the history of the competition. 

Re-Live VakifBank Istabul's Gold Medal Victory

Minas Tenis Clube posted a 10-8 advantage in blocks and had the match’s only ace, but VakifBank led in every other statistical category, out-hitting the Brazilian squad 55 to 41 and out-digging the South Americans 39 to 35. 

VakifBank benefitted from a sort of home-court advantage, with the fans in Shaoxing, China, cheering emphatically for outside hitter Zhu Ting, and by proxy, her VakifBank squad as a whole.

Zhu had 21 points in the gold-medal match and finished the tournament as the top scorer with 98 total points in five matches. She earned the event’s MVP honor, while her teammates Milena Rasic (a middle from Serbia) and Hatice Gizem Orge (a libero from Turkey) were also selected to the Dream Team. 

In the gold-medal match, American national teamer Kelsey Robinson ranked second on the VakifBank scoresheet with 13 points on 12 kills and a block. Brazilian outside hitter Gabriela Guimaraes, aka Gabi, had 16 points, with 12 kills and a match-high four blocks.

Eczacibasi earned a dominant 25-16, 25-18, 25-19 victory in the bronze-medal bout, fueled in particular by the Turkish squad’s impenetrable front-row defense. Eczacibasi posted 14 blocks to Praia Clube’s two, with 5-10 setter Gamze Alikaya leading the match with an impressive five blocks and Team USA middle Lauren Gibbemeyer tallying three.

Turkish opposite Gozde Yilmaz led the match with 17 points, while American outside hitter Jordan Larson added 12 and Turkish middle Beyza Arici had 10. Conversely, not a single player on the Praia Clube roster managed to reach double-digit points.

EIVA Notebook: Schoenfeld Leads Harvard Back From Extended Break

College basketball has hurtled into the postseason and March is officially mad, but in men’s college volleyball, regular-season action chugs along.

Q&A With Power Volley Milano's Taylor Averill

Former University of Hawaii middle blocker Taylor Averill is having a pretty solid year. He made the playoffs of Italy’s Serie A at the conclusion of the 2017-18 professional season with his Power Volley Milano team and then hit the road with the U.S. Men’s National Team for Volleyball Nations League and World Championships. 

EIVA Notebook: Gimeno Shines In Moral Victories For NJIT

With just over a month to go before the conference playoffs and a month and a half from the NCAA Tournament, men’s college volleyball is heating up. 

Krystal Rivers Is On The Rise With Allianz MTV Stuttgart

Krystal Rivers, a 24-year-old American opposite from Birmingham, Alabama, posted 29 points in Allianz MTV Stuttgart’s final Champions League pool play match, a 3-1 defeat of Martiza Plovdiv. No other player on the court at the Kolodruma Sport Hall in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, even came close to matching her tally of 21 kills and eight blocks.

Inside Samantha Middleborn's Extraordinary Journey To Chieri Glory

Here’s the short version of Samantha Middleborn’s extraordinary story.

CEV Women's Quarterfinal Preview

The field has narrowed once again in the race for the 2019 CEV Women’s Champions League title.

EIVA Notebook: Princeton Falls To Red Hot St. Francis

Just when you think you’d gotten a good grasp of the teams and talent in the Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association, a couple of major shakeups go down.

Catching Up With Former Penn State Star Jalen Penrose

USA Volleyball recently released its updated list of international transfers. The American governing body processed a record 440 transfers as of Feb. 1, granting U.S. athletes permission to compete in overseas leagues.

Q&A With Brescia's Haleigh Washington

Almost exactly two months after the conclusion of her college volleyball career, Penn State All-American middle blocker Haleigh Washington crossed the Atlantic to begin her first professional season with Italian A2 team Olimpia Teodora Ravenna. 

Malina Terrell's Pro Volleyball Career: A Travel Log

On a trip to Slovenia in 2011, Malina Terrell decided she would someday be a professional volleyball player.