The wait is over for USA women’s volleyball, and they end the Olympics with a sweep. Team USA knocks off Brazil, an elite volleyball power house to win their first gold medal in the Olympics. Head coach Karch Kiraly emotionally said that he wanted this program to know the feeling off being at the top of the podium. Well coach, mission accomplished.
In the first set, US took a 4-0 lead early. Brazil needed a timeout much sooner than they expected or wanted. However, the US seemed out of sorts and confused, which led to Brazil closing the gap. Team USA quickly got back on track and got back in rhythm. Brazil was able to close the gap to 17-14. The US turned it on to get to set point, and Brazil wanted to talk about it and took a timeout. Ultimately, Brazil saved two set points before losing it 25-22.
The second set started back and forth early on. No team was able to separate. The US had a chance to pull away with a 11-8. They started to do so when the lead grew to 16-9 as Brazil needed a timeout. Points were coming from everywhere as everyone was contributing for the US. Brazil went on a run and the US took a timeout. They still trailed but only by five as they got on a 4-0 run. Brazil battled back as the wheels seemed to be coming off the wagon for Team USA. Finally, a service error bailed the US out and they won the set 25-20.
It was winning time for the US and desperation time for Brazil. Brazil took a timeout trailing 9-7 when things seemed uncertain. It didn’t help as the US built a 4-0 run. Jordan Larson and Annie Drews were major contributors throughout the match, and Drews came alive in the set. Justine Wong-Orantes was also lights out defensively. Brazil ran out of timeouts as they took their last one trailing 15-8. Haleigh Washington got back in the frey with two key blocks. The USA women finally get the gold by a score of 25-14. Captain Jordan Larson ends the match and her career with a bang.
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