A new starting lineup came through with an exciting result as the U.S. Men’s National Team beat world No. 1 Brazil, 3-1 (21-25, 27-25, 25-20, 25-20) in a Volleyball Nations League match on Saturday in Brasilia, Brazil.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 17, 2022) – The U.S. Men’s National Team has added four Olympians to its roster for the next round of Volleyball Nations League (VNL) on June 22-26 in Bulgaria.
The U.S. Men (4-0) finished their first round of VNL in Brazil undefeated, including a 3-0 upset of Brazil, and are in first place in the standings. They will play Serbia (2-2), Iran (2-2), Bulgaria (0-4) and Poland (3-1) in the next round.
Their success in the first round has moved the U.S. Men’s world ranking from seventh to sixth.
“I’m pleased with the way we played this week,” U.S. Head Coach John Speraw said at the end of week 1. “For us to be 4-0 and to beat Brazil in Brazil is a really successful start to the tournament.”
Olympians Kyle Ensing (opposite), Thomas Jaeschke (outside hitter), Aaron Russell (outside) and David Smith (middle blocker) all competed in Brazil and are back on the roster for Bulgaria.
Russell is the U.S. Men’s leading scorer and 10th among all VNL competitors with 58 points in four matches. He is third among all servers with eight aces. He is sixth in receptions with 29 rated “successful.”
Olympians joining the roster are T.J. DeFalco (outside), Garrett Muagututia (outside), Erik Shoji (libero) and Mitch Stahl (middle).
Also returning from the roster that played last week are setters Josh Tuaniga and James Shaw, middles Jeff Jendryk and Tyler Mitchem, and libero Kyle Dagostino.
Tuaniga is third among all setters with 129 “successful” sets. Jendryk leads the U.S. Men in blocks and is fifth overall with 10 blocks in four matches. Dagostino is fourth in digs with 40 in four matches.
Joining the roster for the first time is opposite Kyle Russell, who last played for the U.S. Men in the 2019 VNL and NORCECA Championship.
The U.S. Men had a challenging season in 2021, finishing seventh at VNL and 10th at the Tokyo Olympic Games. They took silver at the 2019 VNL and took bronze at the FIVB World Cup that year.
All VNL matches are being shown on VolleyballWorld.tv, a subscription service.
U.S. Men’s National Team Roster for Round 2 of
2022 Volleyball Nations League
No. Player (Position, Height, Hometown, College, USAV Region)
2 Aaron Russell (OH, 6-9, Ellicott City, Md., Penn State, Chesapeake)
3 James Shaw (S, 6-8, Woodside, Calif. Stanford, Northern California)
4 Jeff Jendryk (MB, 6-10, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola Univ. Chicago, Great Lakes)
5 Kyle Ensing (OPP, 6-7, Valencia, Calif., Long Beach State Univ., Southern California)
6 Mitch Stahl (MB, 6-8, Chambersburg, Pa., UCLA, Keystone)
8 T.J. DeFalco (OH, 6-5, Huntington Beach, Calif., Long Beach State Univ., Southern California)
10 Kyle Dagostino (L, 5-9, Tampa, Florida, Stanford Univ., Florida)
15 Kyle Russell (OPP, 6-9, Loomis, Calif., UC Irvine, Northern California)
16 Josh Tuaniga (S, 6-3, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State Univ., Southern California)
17 Thomas Jaeschke (OH, 6-6, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola Univ. Chicago, Great Lakes)
18 Garrett Muagututia (OH, 6-5, Oceanside, Calif., UCLA, Southern California)
20 David Smith (MB, 6-7, Saugus, Calif., Univ. of California Irvine, Southern California)
22 Erik Shoji (L, 6-0, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford Univ., Aloha)
27 Tyler Mitchem (MB, 6-11, Bolingbrook, Ill., Lewis Univ., Great Lakes)
Head Coach: John Speraw
Assistant Coaches: Matthew Fuerbringer, Mike Wall
Performance Analyst and Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock
Strength and Conditioning Coach: Tim Pelot
Consultant Coach: Mike Sealy
Sports Psychologist: Andrea Becker
Sports Psychologist: Bernard Whitney
Team Doctor: James Suchy
U.S. Men’s Schedule for the 2022 VNL (All times PDT)
All matches to be shown on VolleyballWorld.tv
Preliminary Round 1 – Brasilia, Brazil
USA def Slovenia, 3-0 (25-19, 25-19, 25-14)
USA def Netherlands, 3-0 (25-12, 25-18, 25-16)
USA def Japan, 3-2 (17-25, 25-15, 25-21, 26-28, 15-9)
USA def Brazil, 3-1 (21-25, 27-25, 25-20, 25-20)
Preliminary Round 2 – Sofia, Bulgaria
June 22 at 10 a.m.
USA vs Serbia
June 23 at 10 a.m.
USA vs Iran
June 25 at 10 a.m.
USA vs Bulgaria
June 26 at 6:30 a.m.
USA vs Poland
Preliminary Round 3 – Osaka, Japan
July 4 at 11 p.m.
USA vs Germany
July 6 at 8 p.m.
USA vs France
July 8 at 11:40 p.m.
USA vs Canada
July 9 at 8:40 p.m.
USA vs Argentina
Final Round – Bologna, Italy