FIVB Volleyball Nations League Finals semifinal matches to follow tonight

Photo courtesy of the FIVB

Check out all the semifinal matches at FIVB Volleyball Nations League Finals on Saturday and how to follow them live.

United States (11-6) vs. Brazil (15-2)
Match vitals:
8 p.m. in Chicago
Follow live: Live stats, Live video, In-match tweets
NCAA players on U.S. roster: George Huhmann (Princeton); Matt Anderson (Penn State 2006-08); Micah Christenson (USC 2012-15); Max Holt (Penn State 2006-09); Thomas Jaeschke (Loyola 2013-15); Jeff Jendryk (Loyola 2015-18); Micah Ma’a (UCLA 2016-19); Garrett Muagututia (UCLA 2007-10); Ben Patch (BYU 2013, 2016-17); Aaron Russell (Penn State 2012-15); Taylor Sander (BYU 2011-14); Erik Shoji (Stanford 2009-12); Kawika Shoji (Stanford 2007-10); David Smith (UC Irvine 2004-07)
NCAA players on Brazil roster: None
What to know: The top-two teams in the FIVB World Rankings will meet with the stakes being a spot in the gold-medal match of the Volleyball Nations League. The United States enters this semifinal match against Brazil attempting to become the host nation to Volleyball Nations League or World League championship in 25 years. The tournament’s defending bronze medalists defeated France and Russia to win its Finals pool title and earn a top seed for the semifinals. Former Penn State middle attacker Max Holt in the two victories led the United States with 11 blocks, including a match-high eight blocks against France in the team’s Finals opener on Wednesday. Along with Holt’s defensive performance, the United States had three players finish matches with double-digit kills during the pool-play stage of the Finals. Former Penn State outside attacker Aaron Russell had a match-high 13 kills on a 54.17 percent offensive efficiency against France, while former BYU outside attacker Taylor Sander contributed 12 kills. Former Loyola outside attacker Thomas Jaeschke in one of his first matches since being sidelined for a year with a knee injury led all players with 11 kills as the United States swept Russia on Friday. U.S. coach John Speraw also has utilized former BYU All-American opposite Ben Patch coming off the bench in both matches. Patch led the Volleyball Nations League in the preliminary round with a 55.73 percent offensive efficiency. Brazil outside attacker Ricardo Lucarelli Souza finished just behind Patch with a 55.71 percent offensive efficiency. In addition, Souza had both a team-high six aces and 10 kills in Brazil’s five-game victory against Iran on Friday to clinch a semifinals berth. That pool-play finale was a must-win for Brazil following a five-game loss to Poland on Wednesday to open the Finals. This will be the second meeting between the United States and Brazil this year. The 2016 Olympic gold medalists swept the United States in the opening weekend of the preliminary round. However, the United States swept Brazil in the bronze-medal match at the 2018 Volleyball Nations League Finals.


Poland (13-4) vs. Russia (13-4)
Match vitals:
5 p.m. in Chicago
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets
NCAA players on Poland roster: None
NCAA players on Russia roster: None