Lausanne, Switzerland, December 15, 2018 - If there's one moment to relish from the sensational action in 2018 women's volleyball this has to be Paola Egonu's 45 points for Italy in the semifinal of the 2018 FIVB World Championship against China - a scoring performance that obliterated all others from the record books and set the bar at unbelievable new heights.
This was truly the golden moment in record-keeping for the year, as it shattered by five points the previous high at a single World Championship match, which had stood for 12 years since Kazakhstan's Yelena Pavlova bagged 40 points in her team's five-set defeat to USA in the 2006 edition.
On the back of that scoring performance (and several others in the same competition), Italy's 19-year-old opposite also topped the overall best scorers list at the 2018 World Championship, completely wiping out all previous scorers in the history of the event.
Egonu amassed an astonishing 324 points in 13 matches, 73 more than the previous high of Turkey's Neslihan Demir from 2010 (though in 11 matches). Demir, however, remains the only player since the introduction of the rally scoring system to have been top scorer in two editions of the World Championship.
However she may have tried, though, Egonu did miss out on one other World Championship record: it was Serbia's Tijana Boskovic, the tournament's MVP, who emerged the most efficient attacker of the competition with 176 kills from 328 swings. And even that remains far below the all-time record of 65.03% (106/163) still held by Russia's Elizaveta Tishchenko from 2002.Elizaveta Tishchenko of Russia blocks Bulgaria's Antonina Zetova in the 2002 World Championship quarterfinals, where she set the record of most efficient attacker that still stands today.
The FIVB season also saw the introduction of a brand new event in 2018 - the Volleyball Nations League, which took over from the World Grand Prix and set brand new standards with which future editions will be compared.
It was an exciting month around the world with as many as 14 entries in the list of players who scored 30 points or more in a single match.Poland's Malwina Smarzek spikes on USA's Carli Lloyd in the 2018 VNL.
Three of those entries belong to Poland's Malwina Smarzek, including the tournament high of 39 points scored in her team's five-set defeat to Thailand in Macau. The 22-year-old also scored 35 points against China (3-2) and 33 points against Japan (3-2).
But it was Chinese attackers who dominated the last FIVB event, chronologically, of the season.
Zhu Ting, playing for Turkey's VakifBank Istanbul was named MVP of the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women's Club World Championship, not least for becoming top scorer for the third time in the history of the competition. She is the only player to appear more than once in the all-time top scorers list.
And Liu Yanhan, the 25-year-old outside hitter of Zhejiang Women's Volleyball Club also got in the record books after scoring 34 points for the hosts against France's Volero Le Cannet.
She became the seventh person in the history of the Women's Club World Championships to make the list of players who have scored 30 points or more in a single match and tied the all-time record of Russia's Ekaterina Gamova for Dinamo Kazan against Brazil's Sesi Sao Paulo from 2014.Liu Yanhan in a moment of satisfaction during Zhejiang's match against Le Cannet where she scored an all-time tying high of 34 points.Quick links - Volleyball:FIVB.com - VolleyballFIVB.com