The United States and Brazil posted convincing straight-set victories to start the FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix Finals, with victories over the Netherlands and host Thailand, respectively, at Indoor Stadium Huamark on Wednesday.
Stanford grad Foluke Akinradewo topped all scorers with 16 markers, including 12 spikes, three blocks and an ace; while Lonneke Sloetjes delivered 15 points on a losing effort.
USA recorded their first victory in the final round to stay on course for its goal of back-to-back titles in the World Grand Prix.
"This was the second time we met the strong Netherlands team in this year's World Grand Prix," U.S. team captain Christa Hamotto Dietzen said. "It's good to play against a strong team. We learned a lot from the match and we look forward to a tough match against China on Friday."
The USA middle blockers dominated and dictated the tempo of the match, while the other players contributed in containing the serves of European side Netherlands.
USA have recorded seven successive victories since losing to China on the first week of the preliminary round, while in their latest encounter with the Netherlands, they performed a notch higher than their four-set victory in their previous match in the preliminary round.