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The U.S. men’s volleyball team’s Olympic campaign got off to a rocky start Sunday, as the Americans fell to Canada in straight sets to open up group play.
Team USA came into Rio as the reigning World Cup champions, while Canada entered ranked 12th in the world and was playing in its first Olympic men’s volleyball match since 1992. Canada pulled off a tight 25-23 win in the opening set, then used that momentum to take the second set 25-17. The Americans kept it close in the third, but Canada would not be denied and won 25-23.
Team USA’s Matt Anderson led all players with 15 points, but his side could not overcome sloppy play, with 28 of Canada’s points coming on U.S. errors.
Now the pressure is on the Americans to become one of top four of Group A’s six teams to move out of pool play. The task will not be easy, as the U.S. has yet to face world No. 4 Italy and world No. 1 Brazil.