Lega Pallavolo Serie A Femminile 2021 - News

Novara Scandicci

Two of the most traditional teams in Italy, Novara and Scandicci will feature in the most anticipated match of the weekend

One of the greatest duels in Italian women’s volleyball is set to take place on Sunday, when Igor Gorgonzola Novara play Savino Del Bene Scandicci in the 12th round of the second leg of the Lega Pallavolo vivo Serie A1 Femminile, the penultimate round before the start of the playoffs.

Both teams will enter the match aiming to improve their positions before the end of the regular season, especially Novara, who share the top of the standings with Prosecco Doc Imoco Volley Conegliano with 60 points (21 wins, three losses), but are behind due to their lower set average.

Scandicci are fourth with 51 points (18 wins, six losses). Their chances of catching third-placed Vero Volley Monza, who have 57 (18 wins, six losses), are modest, but they also need to defend their position against fifth-placed Unet E-Work Busto Arsizio, who are right behind them on 49 points (16 wins, eight losses).

Novara dropped down from first place on Wednesday, when Reale Mutua Fenera Chieri took a point off them by pushing them to five sets. The team remain in great form, though, and are undefeated in 11 matches and over three months in the Italian League. They also have a massive historical advantage over their opponents this weekend, having emerged victorious in 17 of the 22 times they have met.

Olympic champion setter Micha Hancock has been a key player for Novara this season, especially with her serving, which has generated a league-high 38 aces so far. Tokyo Olympic silver medallist Rosamaria Montibeller will be absent from the team, though, as she sustained an ankle injury on Wednesday.


Hancock has been a key player for Novara this season

Scandicci, however, were the last side to take Novara down, with a straight-set victory on December 19, when they met in the first leg of the season. It was one of just two losses Novara suffered this season.

The team coached by Massimo Barbolini enter the weekend motivated. Earlier this week, they won the first continental title in their club history with a victory in the CEV Challenge Cup on Wednesday.

Leaders Conegliano will also have an important encounter this weekend, hosting sixth-placed Chieri. Third-placed Vero Volley Monza meet ninth-placed Megabox Ondulati Del Savio Vallefoglia and fifth-placed Unet E-Work Busto Arsizio face 12th-placed VBC Trasporti Pesanti Casalmaggiore.

At the bottom of the standings, the most important matchup will see 13th-placed Acqua & Sapone Roma Volley Club play 14th-placed Delta Despar Trentino. The losers will struggle to avoid relegation.