Looking at the schedule, it would have been easy to assume the U.S. women’s volleyball team would coast to a victory over Italy Friday afternoon.
After all, Italy hadn’t won a set yet in three matches in Rio and Team USA looked like the most dominant team in Pool B.
But Italy refused to follow that script.
The No. 1 team in the world ended up beating No. 8 Italy in four sets, but the battle was a lot closer than most expected.
Still, the Americans come away with three more points, pushing their total to 11 through three matches and giving them the top seed in Pool B.
Despite a valiant effort from the Italians, they walked away with no points and are eliminated from quarterfinals play.