Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 9, 2016 - The third-time was the “charm” for Chaim Schalk and Ben Saxton as the Canadians failed to convert on their first two match points against Evandro Goncalves and Pedro Salgado of Brazil before regaining their composure after a time out to secure their first match win in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games here Tuesday.
With their 2-1 (17-21, 21-18, 16-14) Pool D win in 61 minutes, Saxton and Schalk handed Evandro and Pedro their second setback of the competition as the Brazilians were defeated in three sets Sunday by NORCECA Continental Cup qualifiers Nivaldo Diaz and Sergio Gonzalez of Cuba.
After Brazilians and Canadians split the first two sets, the deciding set was tied 10 times with five lead changes. Saxton and Schalk gained the advantage in the decider by breaking a 10-10 to take leads at 12-10, 13-11 and 14-12. Evandro’s attack saved two match points for the Brazilians as the Canadians called a time out.
Coming out of the time out, Saxton’s successful attack made it 15-14 and his service winner gave the Canadians the win as the Mikasa hit the net and fell in for the winning point. With the win, the North Americans avenged an elimination setback to Evandro and Pedro two months ago at the smart Major Hamburg on June 10 (2-0, 21-19, 21-8, 32 minutes).
All three matches in Pool D have been three-setters as Saxton and Schalk dropped a 2-1 (21-17, 18-21, 15-13) decision in 55 minutes to Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins of Latvia on Sunday after the Cuban victory over Evandro and Pedro, the top-seeded team in the group.
With Samoilovs and Smedins playing Diaz and Gonzalez later Tuesday, the final Pool D matches will be played Thursday with Saxton and Schalk playing the Cubans and Evandro and Pedro meeting the Latvians.