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Canada beats Finland in World Volleyball League in Calgary

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According to the Volleyball Canada website, Canada defeated Finland 19-25, 25-21, 25-18, 23-25, 15-11 in five gruelling sets in World Volleyball League action at the Stampede Corral in Calgary on Sunday evening. Even though the Canadian team won the match, they failed to pick up a full three points with the victory because they needed the full five sets to defeat Finland.

The Canadian team was led in scoring once again by Gavin Schmitt. A native of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Schmitt notched 28 points for Canada. The only other player to register a double digit point total for Canada was John Gordon Perrin of Creston, British Columbia, who registered 23 points.

Three Finnish players meanwhile exceeded ten points. Captain Antti Siltala led the Finnish team with 17 points, followed by Matti Oivanen with 13 points and Urpo Sivula with 12 points.

Once again, the Finnish team was hurt by their total number of errors. Finnish errors led to 28 Canadian points, compared to the 25 Canadian errors that led to Finnish points.

Still, the 25 errors were too many for Team Canada. They will have to reduce their total of unforced errors as a team if they want to beat Belgium.

With the victory, Canada sits in second place in Pool C, one full point behind Belgium. The Belgians defeated Australia twice last weekend, so Belgium recorded a full three points for each of their victories.

Canada will next face Belgium next weekend in Liege, Belgium on Friday, June 6 and Sunday, June 8. The Canadians will then return home to face Belgium in Vancouver, British Columbia on Friday, June 13. The games in Vancouver will be played at the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre.

In order for Canada to advance to the second round after the two game home and home series with Finland, Australia and Belgium, they will need to win their group. They can also advance to the second round if they finish in second place and Australia wins the pool, but that scenario is unlikely now that Belgium beat Australia twice.

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