COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Aug. 27, 2018) – The U.S. Men’s Junior National Team (MJNT) beat Nicaragua, 25-23, 25-15, 25-15 to open pool play at the NORCECA U21 Continental Championship on Monday in Havana, Cuba.

The U.S. MJNT (1-0) will play Haiti (0-1) on Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET.

OFFICIAL STATISTICS

The MJNT led Nicaragua in kills (43-27), blocks (10-1) and aces (6-1).

“The first set of the match, Nicaragua came out super strong and they showed us what they had,” said U.S. Team Captain and middle blocker Sam Lewis. “They’re a super scrappy team and it’s an honor to play against them.”

U.S. opposite Jaylen Jasper led all scorers with 18 points, including a match-high 15 kills, while outside hitter J.P. Reilly added 15.

Lewis finished with a match-high three blocks and outside hitter Devin Joslyn had a match-high three aces. Middle blocker Kyler Presho had two blocks and an ace to go with five kills.

Setter Joe Kelly, who started the first set, and Blake Crisp, who substituted in the first and finished out the match, combined to set the United States to a .479 hitting efficiency.

Libero Garland Peed was credited with three digs and four excellent receptions.

“Credit to Nicaragua for their desire and their ability to come out in the first set and compete,” said U.S. Head Coach Jonah Carson. “As the match continued, I thought we found our rhythm and found our confidence. As much as our team has experience, you still have to get yourself into the tournament. I thought we did a nice job of that in this match.”

U.S. STARTERS VS NICARAGUA
Outside hitters: J.P Reilly and Devin Joslyn
Middle blockers: Sam Lewis and Kyler Presho
Opposite: Jaylen Jasper
Setter: Joe Kelly
Libero: Garland Peed
Substitutes: Blake Crisp (S), Luke Dentin (Opp), Kevin Lamp (OH)

U.S. STATISTICS VS NICARAGUA
Kills: Jasper 15, Reilly 12, Lewis 6, Presho 5, Joslyn 5
Blocks: Lewis 3, Presho 2, Jasper 2, Reilly 2, Joslyn 1
Aces: Joslyn 3, Reilly 1, Presho 1, Jasper 1
Digs: Peed 3, Reilly 1, Joslyn 1

U.S. Men’s Junior National Team Roster

Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
2 Blake Crisp (S, 6-3, Westlake Village, Calif., Signed to UC San Diego)
3 Luke Denton (Opp, 6-6, Mesa, Ariz., Signed to Loyola Chicago)
7 Jaylen Jasper (Opp, 6-8, Annapolis, Md., Stanford)
8 Devin Joslyn (OH, 6-6, Angola, N.Y., Loyola Chicago)
10 Kevin Lamp (OH, 6-4, Lake Bluff, Ill., Committed to Stanford)
11C Sam Lewis (MB, 6-10, Long Beach, Calif., USC)
12 J.T. Martin (MB, 6-8, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Signed to Pepperdine)
14 Spencer Olivier (OH, 6-6, Tustin, Calif., Long Beach State)
15 Garland Peed V (L, 6-2, San Diego, Calif., UCLA)
16 Kyler Presho (MB, 6-8, San Clemente, Calif., Stanford)
19 J.P. Reilly (OH, 6-5, Manhattan Beach, Calif., Stanford)
22 Joe Kelly (S, 6-2, El Segundo, Calif., Princeton)

Head Coach: Jonah Carson (USAV High Performance and Mountain View Volleyball Club)
Assistant Coach: Kris Berzins (USAV High Performance and D1 Volleyball Club)
Assistant Coach: Sam Shweisky (Princeton University men’s volleyball)
Team Manager: Aldis Berzins (Stevenson University Men’s Volleyball)
Technical Coordinator: Jeremy DeRoche
Team Doctor: Denise Wunderler

Preliminary Phase Schedule:
(All times ET)

Aug. 27
Dominican Republic def Barbados, 25-21. 25-21, 25-18
Canada def Haiti, 25-14, 25-17, 25-18
United States def Nicaragua, 25-23, 25-15, 25-15 
Cuba def Guatemala, 25-17, 25-18, 25-13

Aug. 28
Noon: Dominican Republic v Guatemala
2 p.m. Canada v Nicaragua
4 p.m. United States v Haiti
6 p.m. Cuba v Barbados

Aug. 29
Noon: Guatemala v Barbados
2 p.m. Nicaragua v Haiti
4 p.m. Canada v United States
6 p.m. Cuba v Dominican Republic