Read the full story on SportsLook - Japan Defeats Brazil in a Thriller to Remain Unbeaten in the Men's Volleyball Nations League
The Japan national team is on a roll in the FIVB Men's Volleyball Nations League.
Outside hitter and captain Yuki Ishikawa produced a match-high 27 points as Japan beat Brazil three sets to two on Thursday, June 22 to improve to a perfect 7-0 and stay atop the standings with 20 points.
Brazil, the world’s third-ranked team, is now fourth in the standings with a 4-2 record and 13 points.
Japan, which is ranked seventh in the world, got off to a strong start with five aces in the first set to reach quadruple set point at 24-20.
Brazil denied the first three opportunities, but Takahashi put an end to the opening set on the fourth.
Japan stepped up its spiking attack in the second set with Ishikawa continuing to lead the offense. As a result, Japan opened up a comfortable lead and kept pace until Takahashi once again scored the winning point.
Brazil found its pace in the third set when it broke away and never looked back after being tied 5-5.
Middle blocker Flavio Gualberto nailed three blocks for points and playmaker Bruno Rezende added another before outside hitter Ricardo Lucarelli nailed the winner as the Brazilians leveled after four.
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Author: Jim Armstrong
The author is a longtime journalist who has covered sports in Japan for over 25 years. You can find his articles on SportsLook.