COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 27, 2017) – The U.S. Men’s Junior National Team (MJNT) dropped its fourth straight match on Tuesday, falling to Italy, 25-23, 25-21, 25-23 at the FIVB Men’s U21 World Championship in Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic.

The MJNT (0-4) will face host Czech Republic (1-2) on Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. PT.

The MJNT led Italy in kills (38-35) and aces (6-4), but Italy led in blocks (12-8) and also scored 24 points on U.S. errors while committing 15. The U.S. hitting efficiency was .232 while Italy’s was .314.

“Italy played a good, clean match. They didn’t make many mistakes,” U.S. MJNT Head Coach Jay Hosack said. “I thought we had some execution moments that were a little less than optimal. The biggest thing is we have to find a way to flip the switch and be passionate about what we are doing and not just go through the motions just because we’re not in the top half of the tournament. If we figure that out we will be pretty good.”

Outside hitter Brett Rosenmeier led the United States with 11 points on nine kills and one ace. Opposite Kyle Ensing added 10 points on eight kills and two aces. Middle blocker George Huhmann scored 10 points on six kills, two blocks and two aces. Setter Micah Ma’a had a team-high three blocks.

“It was tough to find our rhythm,” Ma’a said. “At the end of sets we started finding it. Then at the beginning of the set we’d have a little bit of a change and it would take us a while to find our rhythm again.

“It’s always tough when you’re out there and things aren’t going your way and you put in the effort but the touches aren’t there. We’re going to have to move on and get it out of our system.”

The United States had its best chance to win a set in the third. After trailing 10-3 and 14-18, the MJNT turned up its blocking and tied the score at 20-20 and again at 22-22. But Italy pulled away.

Starters for U.S. MJNT vs Italy
Outside hitters: Brett Rosenmeier and Austin Matautia
Middle blockers: Scott Stadick and George Huhmann
Setter: Micah Ma’a
Opposite: Kyle Ensing
Libero: Gage Worsley

Statistics for U.S. MJNT vs Italy
Kills: Rosenmeier 9, Ensing 8, Stadick 6, Huhmann 6, Matautia 5, Jordan Ewert 3, Ma’a 1
Blocks: Ma’a 3, Huhmann 2, Stadick 2, Rosenmeier 1
Aces: Huhmann 2, Ensing 2, Rosenmeier 1, Matautia 1
Digs: Worsley 3, Matautia 2, Rosenmeier 2, Ensing 2, Ma’a 1

U.S. Men’s Junior National Team
No – Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College, Region)
2 – Gage Worsley (L, 6-2, Moraga, Calif., signed with Hawaii, NCVA)
3 – Josh Tuaniga (S, 6-2, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State, SCVA)
4 – Micah Ma’a (S, 6-4, Kaneohe, Hawaii, UCLA, Aloha)
5 – Dylan Missry (OH, 6-4, Holbrook, N.Y., UCLA, Garden Empire)
7 – Jordan Ewert (OH, 6-5, Antioch, Calif., Stanford, NCVA)
8 – Austin Matautia (OH, 6-5, Ewa Beach, Hawaii, Hawaii, Aloha)
9 – Brett Rosenmeier (OH, 6-6, Virginia Beach, Va., Hawaii, Old Dominion)
14 – Kyle Ensing (Opp, 6-7, Valencia, Calif., Long Beach State, SCVA)
15 – Matthew Szews (Opp, 6-8, Brookfield, Wis., Ball State, Badger)
16 – Patrick Gasman (MB, 6-8, Clovis, Calif., Hawaii, NCVA)
19 – Scott Stadick (MB, 7-0, Watertown, Wis., UC Irvine, Badger)
20 – George Huhmann (MB, 6-10, High Ridge, Mo., Princeton, Gateway)

Head Coach: Jay Hosack (George Mason University)
Assistant Coach: Jonah Carson (Mountain View Volleyball Club) Matt McCarthy (Lewis University)
Team Manager: Jen Armson Dyer
Doctor: David Dyck, Jr.
Technical Coordinator: Galen Dodd

U.S. Schedule for the FIVB Men’s U21 World Championship
(all times PT)

Pool G
June 27: Italy def. USA, 25-23, 25-21, 25-23
June 28: USA vs. Czech Republic, 8:30 a.m.
June 29: USA vs. Egypt, 3:30 a.m.

Pool B

June 23: Turkey def. USA, 25-19, 25-14, 30-28
June 24: Cuba def. USA, 25-23, 25-19, 25-20
June 25: Russia def. USA, 25-20, 25-21, 25-22

Pools for the FIVB Men’s U21 World Championship

Pool E
Poland 1-0
China 0-1
Cuba 0-0
Iran 0-0

Pool F
Russia 1-0
Argentina 0-1
Brazil 0-0
Canada 0-0

Pool G
Italy 1-0
USA 0-1
Czech Republic 0-0
Egypt 0-0

Pool H
Turkey 1-0
Ukraine 0-1
Japan 0-0
Morocco 0-0