Volley. European Champions! The girls of Cus Bologna triumph at the EUSA Championships

The team of the University of Bologna were crowned European champions after beating their Turkish opponents from Aydin University.

After losing the first set, the girls didn’t give up and came back point after point beating the Turkish team 3-1. Just last week, the boys of the basket team won the title for the third consecutive time. And now this historic result from the girls’ volley team. Before Cus Bologna, no Italian University had ever won so much.

Only a week ago, captain Chiappelli and his team were singing “We are the European champions”. Obviously, Poland brings luck to the University of Bologna and Cus, as another gold medal was won in Lodz, this time by the girls of the volley team, who last year made their début with a 5th place, and now are the winners of the European Universities Volleyball Championships.

The University of Bologna takes gold twice in one week. It had never happened before, even if the Rector Francesco Ubertini was hoping for it. The day of the team presentation before leaving for Poland, held in the Sala dell’VIII Centenario at the Rectorate, the Rector had an engagement in Rimini, but managed to get back to Bologna on time, and without knowing it (but maybe hoping for it), he got to see off the two teams that were to become European Champions.

It all happened on Court 1 at Malachowskiego in Lodz. A year ago, in Coimbra, Aydin University had stopped Cus Bologna during the knock-out stage, interrupting the run of captain Serena Vece and her team. Cus Bologna triumphs 3-1. But the final result doesn’t give the measure of the team's extraordinary passion and determination. The Turkish girls won the first set and while initially trailing 6-10 in the second set, they got to 17-14. Once again, the girls of Cus Bologna were with their backs to the wall. However, they managed to go all square at 18 points and win the second set thanks to the powerful spikes of Rosa Laura Baggi and Serena Vece.

The third set did not start well at all. The Turkish, determined to take revenge for the second set, went 7-1 up. A situation in which a team with no determination would have most likely succumbed. Instead, Elena Fronza and Giulia Visintini stepped up to the challenge and took the score to 8 all. The Turkish girls went a step ahead again, but by then something had changed. Cus and Serena Vece had got into their heads. Yet another streak in favour of Cus Bologna.

In the last set, Aydin University got off with the right foot: 3-1, but Cus Bologna reacted, and the score went to 4-5 (as captain Vece stepped up). By then Cus was unstoppable. Baggi, Visintini, Fronza: the protagonists change, but the result is the same, 11-13. Then 12-15. Cus takes the lead 17-21. Their opponents are like a cornered boxer. Cus Bologna is punching hard. The girls in red and white make the right call: they know this is not the time to lower their guard so they keep going until the last point is scored by Giulia Visitini, who in the previous action had made a successful block.

Then came the tears. Tears of joy. Cus Bologna are European Champions. In September, when all University activities resume, probably the Rector will be quite busy celebrating two teams that are the pride and joy of the entire sports system of the University of Bologna.

“I have no words to describe the results that our teams have been obtaining for the past few years”. Piero Pagni is a happy president. As a player and athlete, with Cus Bologna he won the hockey championships multiple times (once on grass and twice indoors). But the satisfaction of these last weeks may be even more special. Cus Bologna - Piero has been the president since 2015 - has won three consecutive EUSA European basket titles. And now, for the first time has won also the EUSA European volley title. Before Cus Bologna, no Italian University had ever won so much. Cus Bologna does things seriously and in the best possible way, taking home two gold medals, for basket and volley, in less than a week. A historic result. Legendary even.

“These successful results – said Federico Panieri, club manager of Cus Bologna – are the fruit of hard work and planning. Over the years we have tried to build something good together with Unibo. The University of Bologna and Cus have been able to put together rosters and great teams. Great girls (and boys), on and off the court. These results are exceptional but have not been achieved by chance. And, in addition to the great work to get here, we cannot stress enough the impact and the performances of the boys and girls and their staff. Plus, we also had a bit of luck, which is always appreciated. But winning three back to back basketball titles and succeeding in volleyball in just two years, shows just how hard we have worked”.

All with the help of partners who have always believed in this project. The team shirts are signed by Macron and the sponsor is Matteiplast, who has supported the red and white teams since the beginning. All we can add is “Well done Cus Bologna”.

Aydin University of Istanbul-Cus Bologna 1-3 (25-17; 22-25; 23-25; 18-25). The team: Rosa Laura Baggi 19, Serena Vece 17, Giulia Visintini 13, Elena Fronza 10, Francesca Galli Venturelli 5, Elisa Ferracci 3, Giulia Grillini 3, Erika Corsi, Giulia Geminiani, Greta Pinali, Matilda Uguzzoni, Seline Teglio. Manager, Leonardo Palladino; Assistant Manager, Ilaria Gaiani; Physiotherapist, Alessandro Vitti; Accompanying Crew Member, Giuliano Lodi.

Published on: 09 August 2019