Their two losses came against formidable foes: in the second round against Brazil, the #1 ranked team in the world, and then in the third round against hosts and fourth-ranked Italy. Neither loss kept them from advancing to the next round, and a semifinal revenge winning 3-0 match against Brazil vaulted them into the final versus old foe China. Although the fifth-ranked Chinese were able to take a set, the U.S. took the match and the title, culminating in a Championship a lot of people see as a long-time coming.
The tournament seems like it was a high-octane and diverse affair. Although traditional powers like the U.S., China, and Brazil (in third) topped the podium, less traditional women's volleyball nations continued to cause disruption and present themselves well. The Dominican Republic finished tied with Russia for fifth, Serbia tied with Japan for seventh, and Germany, Turkey, Belgium all finished in the top twelve. It will be interesting to see how some of these countries improve over the next year and throughout Olympic qualification. But in the meantime, cheers to the USA!