Canadian men's volleyball team stays positive during Olympic qualifying process

With its 2020 Olympic hopes on hold, the Canadian men's volleyball team recorded a three-set sweep of Finland Sunday to conclude play at a qualifying tournament in Ningbo, China.

Posts character win in China ahead of NORCECA Championships in September

Members of the Canadian men's volleyball team celebrate their three-set sweep of Finland on Sunday at an Olympic qualifying tournament in Ningbo, China. Despite a 2-1 record over the weekend, Canada failed to win its pool to clinch a berth in the 2020 Olympic tournament but can still qualifying in the coming months. (Submitted by FIVB)

With its 2020 Olympic hopes on hold, the Canadian men's volleyball team soldiered on, seeking a positive end to a disappointing qualifying tournament in Ningbo, China.

Stephen Maar and Jason DeRocco collected 14 points apiece in Sunday's three-set sweep of Finland by scores of 25-16, 26-24, 25-20.

"I was happy we played a good game," Canada captain Gord Perrin told Volleyball Canada. "We showed some good character and heart in the match, especially after last night knowing we were not going to qualify [for the Olympics].

"Our summer continues and we have to focus on our next goal."

Canada will compete at the NORCECA Championships in Winnipeg early next month, with the top four ranked teams in the region from that event advancing to the zonal qualifier in January.

A loss to Argentina on Friday coupled with Saturday's five-set victory over the host Chinese knocked the Canadians out of contention to win Group F and receive an automatic by to next summer's Olympic tourney in Tokyo.

Canada (2-1) finished second to unbeaten Argentina, which defeated China (1-2) in five sets Sunday to improve to 3-0.

Only the top team from each of the six divisions clinched an Olympic berth this weekend.

"I'm pleased that the team was able to remain focused and compete, although after the [loss to] Argentina it was quite difficult," admitted Canada head coach Glenn Hoag.


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