COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 8, 2023) – The U.S. Men’s National Team showed off the benefits of experience against a young Italian team at the Volleyball Nations League on Thursday, getting its second straight sweep (25-15, 25-18, 25-19) in Ottawa, Canada. The U.S. Men (2-0) will take Friday off before playing host Canada (1-0) at...
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 9, 2023) – The U.S. Men’s National Team brought out the brooms again in Volleyball Nations League action, this time sweeping host Canada 25-22, 25-20, 25-20 on Saturday night in Ottawa. Heading into Sunday’s matches, the U.S. is one of only three men’s teams still undefeated.
The U.S. Men (3-0) finish the first week of VNL on Sunday against Brazil (2-1) at 11:30 a.m. PT. Brazil defeated Germany and Argentina before losing a five-set match to Cuba Saturday.
Despite the sweep, the U.S. Men still had bouts of inconsistency, as to be expected early in the season. They let a big lead in the first set slip away before eventually winning 25-22.
“I think Canada pressured us more than what we’ve seen so far this week,” U.S. Head Coach John Speraw said. “I thought in stretches, they served really tough; they got us in a lot of trouble in that first set when we had a good lead. Even though we had a lead pretty much all the time, they kept coming back. So, late in sets they were not making it easy.
I don’t think we connected particularly well in the first set,” Speraw continued. “We got really stuck in one rotation and gave up a bunch of points, so we’ll have to go back and look at that. It’s not going to be perfect every night, so if we can come out with a win when we’re not playing our best volleyball, then I think that’s really a good sign.”
Opposite Matt Anderson led all scorers with 18 points (14 kills, one ace, and three blocks), and outside hitter Aaron Russell scored 17 points on a match-high 16 kills and one ace.
Anderson is just beginning to get back in the groove after working through an injury.
“I’m coming off a pretty bad ankle sprain just last week, so it’s been a little hard to get back and get my rhythm going,” he said. “But I’ve logged a lot of time and hours with (setter) Micah (Christenson) out there, so it was just a matter of time before we were clicking on all cylinders again. I’m happy we won. It’s team over personal performance at this point in time in my career.”
U.S. Men’s National Team 30-Athlete Roster for
2023 Volleyball Nations League
No. Player (Position, Height, Hometown, College, USAV Region)
1 Matt Anderson (Opp, 6-10, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State, Western Empire)
2 Aaron Russell (OH, 6-9, Ellicott City, Md., Penn State, Chesapeake)
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)
8 T.J. DeFalco (OH, 6-5, Huntington Beach, Calif., Long Beach State Univ., Southern California)
9 Jake Hanes (OPP, 6-10, Orland Park, Ill., Ohio State Univ., Great Lakes)
11 Micah Christenson (S, 6-5, Honolulu, Hawaii, Univ. of Southern California, Hawaii)
12 Max Holt (MB, 6-10, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State, Ohio Valley)
14 Micah Ma’a (S, 6-3, Kaneohe, Hawaii, UCLA, Aloha)
18 Garrett Muagututia (OH, 6-5, Oceanside, Calif., UCLA, Southern California)
19 Taylor Averill (MB, 6-7, San Jose, Calif., Univ. of Hawaii, Northern 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., Hawaii)
23 Cody Kessel (OH, 6-5, Colorado Springs, Colo., Princeton Univ., Rocky Mountain)
Head Coach: John Speraw
Assistant Coaches: Matt Fuerbringer, Javier Weber
Second Assistant Coaches: Erik Sullivan
Performance Analyst and Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock
Team Manager: David Dantes
Sports Psychologist: Andrea Becker
Team Doctor: Andrew Gregory
U.S. Men’s Schedule for the 2023 VNL
All matches will be broadcast on volleyballworld.tv
Week 1 in Ottawa, Canada
(All times PT)
June 7 USA def Netherlands 3-0 (25-19, 25-23, 25-21)
June 8 USA def Italy 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-19)
June 10 USA def. Canada 3-0 (
June 11 at 11:30 a.m. USA vs Brazil
Week 2 in Rotterdam, Netherlands
June 20 at 7:30 a.m. USA vs Serbia
June 21 at 7:30 a.m. USA vs China
June 23 at 7:30 a.m. USA vs Iran
June 24 at 4 a.m. USA vs Poland
Week 3 in Anaheim, California, USA
July 5 at 6:30 p.m. USA vs Cuba
July 7 at 6:30 p.m. USA vs Argentina
July 8 at 6:30 p.m. USA vs France
July 9 at 6:30 p.m. USA vs Bulgaria