Two of the most successful teams in Italy in recent years, Prosecco Doc Imoco Volley Conegliano and Igor Gorgonzola Novara will compete for the first trophy of the 2022-2023 club season on Saturday, when they play in the Italian Supercoppa.
Conegliano and Novara to collide in Supercoppa match
This week’s duel is a classic. It is also the 13th final between the two Italian giants in five years. Watch all the action live on Volleyball TV.
Pubblicato 09:00, 22 nov 2022
The duel between the two teams that have dominated the national scene in Italy over the last five seasons will take place at the recently-inaugurated Palazzo Wanny, in Florence, and will start at 20:30 local time (19:30 GMT).
Saturday’s encounter will mark the 13th gold medal match between the two Italian giants since 2017. Conegliano and Novara met in four of the last five finals of the Italian Cup, faced each other in the Italian League playoff in three of the last four seasons, were opponents in four of the five most recent Italian Supercoppas and also met in the gold medal match of the CEV Champions League once.
Conegliano have been more successful in those encounters, and took the title in eight of the 12 finals between the two teams. The reigning Italian champions have also won 14 of the last 15 duels, with Novara’s single victory taking place in the last Italian League season, in March 2022. The most recent match reuniting Conegliano and Novara took place two weeks ago, in the Italian League, and Conegliano won 3-0.
Igor Gorgonzola Novara vs. Prosecco Doc Imoco Conegliano - Match Highlights
History, however, won’t come into play when the two rivals meet in the Italian Supercoppa, especially after both sides made significant changes to their rosters ahead of the 2022-2023 club season.
The winners of the last four editions of the Supercoppa, Conegliano lost a number of key players, including star opposite Paola Egonu, Italian national team captain and outside hitter Myriam Sylla, veteran middle blocker Raphaela Folie and American outside hitter Megan Courtney.
The club worked hard to give world champion head coach Daniele Santarelli great players to work with and brought in Swedish opposite Isabelle Haak, outside hitters Kelsey Robinson, Alexa Gray and Alessa Gennari and middle blockers Marina Lubian and Federica Squarcini to join the returning core of Joanna Wolosz - the team's setter - outside hitter Kathryn Plummer, middle blocker Robin De Kruijf and libero Monica De Gennaro.
The new mix seems to be working well for the Panthers, who sit at the top of the standings in the Italian League after having won their first nine matches of the season.
Novara, who won the Supercoppa in 2017, also had a busy off-season, with American Olympic champion setter Micha Hancock, Brazilian Olympic medallist opposite Rosamaria Montibeller, high-scoring outside hitters Britt Herbots and Nika Daalderop and American Olympic champion middle blocker Haleigh Washington all leaving the club.
To make up for the departures, the club recruited American setter Jordyn Poulter, outside hitters McKenzie Adams and Kenia Carcaces and middle blocker Anna Danesi. Head coach Stefano Lavarini reshaped the team for the 2022-2023 season, but was able to continue to rely on Turkish star opposite Ebrar Karakurt and Italian national team veterans Caterina Bosetti, Cristina Chirichella and Eleonora Fersino.
Novara’s start has been somewhat inconsistent, as the team dropped back-to-back Italian League matches earlier this month, but the team have bounced back nicely, winning the last two to move back up to second place in the standings ahead of the Supercoppa.