ANAHEIM, Calif. (May 19, 2016) – The 12 players who will represent the United States at the NORCECA Men’s Pan American Cup left for Mexico City on Thursday.
The Pan American Cup will run May 21-26 and will also include teams from Argentina, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Colombia, Costa Rica, Honduras and Mexico.
“We have eight days of practice, so I am just trying to get them to play together Iike we know they can,” said Head Coach Ron Larsen, a two-time Olympic assistant coach and currently an assistant at Concordia University Irvine. “They are a great group of guys and they have the opportunity to wear USA on their back. They’re looking forward to it.”
The assistant coaches are Armen Zakarian, coach at West Valley College in Saratoga, California, and Sean Rooney, a two-time Olympian and 2008 gold medalist who is now an assistant coach at Pepperdine. Team manager Jordan Cheng is from UC Irvine.
Carson Clark, who was playing with the senior Men’s National Team before being sidelined by an injury, will be the team captain and will play at opposite. Outside hitters who will compete at the Pan Am Cup are T.J. DeFalco (Huntington Beach, Calif.), Jake Langlois (San Jose, Calif.), Greg Petty (Downers Grove, Ill.), Brenden Sander (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and Josh Taylor (Honolulu, Hawaii).
The middle blockers on the team are Taylor Averill (San Jose, Calif.), Jeff Jendryk (Wheaton, Ill.) and Kris Johnson (Long Beach, Calif.).
The setters are Peter Hutz (Whitefish Bay, Wis.) and Josh Tuaniga (Long Beach, Calif.) while Michael Brinkley (Huntington Beach, Calif.) will play libero.
Averill, Brinkley, DeFalco and Johnson all played on the U.S. Men’s team that competed at the 2015 Pan American Games.
Langlois, Sander, Tuaniga, Jendryk and DeFalco are all still in the midst of their college careers.