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Andy Wong, Associated Press
USA players from left, Danielle Scott-Arruda, Kimberly Glass, Tayyiba Hareef-Park, Nicole Davis and Logan Tom reacts after they scored a point against Italy in the final set during their women's volleyball quarterfinals match.

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.

Logan Tom led the U.S. in points, with 14 kills, three blocks and two service errors for 19 points.


E-mail: taylor@desnews.com