• Kyodo

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Japan lost in straight sets to South Korea in women’s volleyball Friday to drop to a 1-3 record and into danger of exiting the Athens Olympics after the round-robin preliminaries.

The Japanese team wasted a set point in the second set by losing five straight points and ended up falling 25-21, 26-24, 25-21 to the South Koreans, who secured a place in the quarterfinals with three wins and a loss at Peace and Friendship Stadium.

“We could not do anything against South Korea. We had serious problems with our attacks and receives and made many mistakes,” said Japanese team captain Tomoko Yoshihara.

“We’re playing inconsistently and can’t do the things we want to. We’ve completely fallen apart inside and must shift our mind to the next step,” she said.

Kana Oyama led Japan’s offense with 13 points — all with spikes — and helped her team build up a 24-21 lead in the second set, but the players could not hold on and looked spiritless in the third set.

Japan has one first-round match left to play, against Kenya on Sunday.

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