U.S. Men Defeat Poland; Take World League Bronze

July 15, 2007, 12 a.m. (ET)
B.J. Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: 719-228-6800

ANAHEIM, Calif. (July 15, 2007) - The U.S. Men's National Volleyball Team defeated hometown favorite Poland, 3-1 (25-19, 25-21, 22-25, 25-19) on Sunday for a third-place finish at the FIVB World League in Katowice, Poland.

With the victory, the U.S. Men complete World League with a 12-4 record. They also get a little revenge for an earlier 0-3 (22-25, 34-36, 23-25) loss to Poland (14-2) in final-round, pool-play action.

Third place is the best World League finish for the United States since 1992, when it also placed third.

Brazil defeated Russia 3-1 (18-25, 25-23, 28-26, 25-22) in the championship match to win its fifth straight World League title.

Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) led all scorers on Sunday with 21 points on 17 kills, two blocks and two aces. Gabe Gardner (San Clemente, Calif.) added 15 points on 14 kills and one block. David Lee (Alpine, Calif.) and Riley Salmon (League City, Texas) each contributed 11 points. Lee had nine kills and two blocks. Salmon tallied 10 kills and an ace.

"In the beginning of the final round we talked about playing every match with the most effort and energy we can," said U.S. Team Captain Tom Hoff (Park Ridge, Ill.). "We were not happy with that when we analyzed our last two games. Today, we told ourselves in the changing room, that we give everything in this match, no matter whether we win or lose and it all turned out very well."

U.S. Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon started Gardner at opposite, Priddy and Salmon at outside hitter, Lee and Ryan Millar (Palmdale, Calif.) at middle blocker, Kevin Hansen (Newport Beach, Calif.) at setter and Rich Lambourne (Tustin, Calif.) at libero.

Clay Stanley (Honolulu, Hawai'i) and Hoff substituted at opposite and middle blocker respectively.

Mariusz Wlazly and Michel Winiarski each scored 17 points for Poland.

The first set was close until the score was tied 10-10. The U.S. Men went on a five-point run and held a 16-14 lead at the second technical timeout. Poland never recovered.

The first-set victory quieted the estimated crowd of 10,200. Poland led 8-7 at the first technical timeout, but the U.S. Men quickly overcame the lead.

Poland led the third set 8-7 at the first technical timeout and 21-16 at the second. Trailing 21-16, McCutcheon took a timeout and the U.S. Men responded by pulling to within two, 20-22, but Poland maintained the lead for the victory.

The U.S. Men came back strong in the fourth set, taking an 8-3 lead at the first technical timeout and a 16-8 lead at the second.

View the box from this match at www.fivb.org/vis_web/volley/wl2007/pdf/P2-105.pdf.

All World League matches played in the United States and the World League finals are scheduled to be shown on ESPNU.

Results, statistics and photos are available on the FIVB World League Web Site at www.fivb.org/EN/Volleyball/Competitions/WorldLeague/2007.

The 2007 U.S. Men's media kit is available at www.usavolleyball.org/media/national/us_men_mediakit07.pdf (please note that this is a large PDF file).

2007 FIVB World League

Final Round Schedule

Pool E
July 11: Poland def. France, 3-2 (38-36 19-25 21-25 25-21 15-11)
July 12: USA def. France, 3-0 (25-21, 25-20, 28-26)
July 13: Poland def. USA, 3-0 (25-22, 36-34, 25-23)
Pool F
July 11: Bulgaria def. Brazil, 3-2 (21-25, 25-20, 21-25, 25-23, 15-12)
July 12: Russia def. Bulgaria, 3-0 (25-23, 25-21, 25-21)
July 13: Brazil def. Russia, 3-1 (22-25, 25-23, 25-20, 26-24)

July 14
SF1: Russia def. USA, 3-1 (25-22, 17-25, 25-13, 25-21)
SF2: Brazil def. Poland, 3-1 (25-23, 23-25, 25-21, 25-23)

July 15
Third-place: USA def. Poland, 3-1 (25-19, 25-21, 22-25, 25-19)
Championship: Brazil def. Russia, 3-1 (18-25, 25-23, 28-26, 25-22)

U.S. 12-Man Roster

No. Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
2 Sean Rooney (OH, 6-9, Wheaton, Ill., Pepperdine)
3 Jim Polster (OH, 6-6, Laguna Niguel, Calif., Long Beach State)
4 Brandon Taliaferro (S, 6-5, San Clemente, Calif., UCLA)
5 Rich Lambourne (L, 6-3, Tustin, Calif., BYU)
7 David Lee (MB, 6-8, Alpine, Calif., Long Beach State)
8 Reid Priddy (OH, 6-5, Richmond, Va., Loyola Marymount)
9 Ryan Millar (MB, 6-8, Palmdale, Calif., BYU)
10 Riley Salmon (OH, 6-6, League City, Texas, Pierce College)
12 Tom Hoff (MB, 6-8, Park Ridge, Ill., Long Beach State)
13 Clay Stanley (OPP, 6-9, Honolulu, Hawai'i, Hawai'i)
14 Kevin Hansen (S, 6-5, Newport Beach, Calif., Stanford)
15 Gabe Gardner (OH, 6-9, San Clemente, Calif., Stanford)