BEIJING Rallying from a 2-1 deficit in the best-of-five women's volleyball quarterfinals, the United States rushed out to substantial early leads in winning the last two sets to down Italy and advance to Thursday's semifinals.
Score it 20-25, 25-21, 19-25, 25-18, 15-6 for the U.S. in a back-and-forth battle until the Americans overwhelmed the now-eliminated Italians late in the match at Capital Gymnasium.
That includes rushing out to an 8-0 lead in the fourth set where the U.S. was never threatened and a near-mirror effort in the first-to-15 fifth set where the U.S. started off 5-0 and extended it even more en route to the 9-point final margin.
So it's on to the semifinals to face Cuba, which downed the U.S. in preliminary pool play last week. Cuba won its quarterfinal match, sweeping Serbia earlier in the day.
Other quarterfinal winners Tuesday include Brazil 3-0 over Japan and host China 3-0 over Russia, meaning the other semifinal will pit Brazil against China.
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