U.S. Men Defeat China in McCutcheon's Return

Aug. 16, 2008, 1:47 a.m. (ET)

B.J. Hoeptner Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: 719-228-6800

BEIJING (Aug. 16, 2008) – In his first Olympic match as a head coach, USA Volleyball’s Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) led the U.S. Men’s Olympic Volleyball Team to a 3-0 (25-22, 25-12, 25-18) victory over China on Saturday at the Beijing Institute of Technology Gymnasium.

The U.S. Men sit atop Pool A with a 4-0 record with one pool play match left to play against Japan at 10 p.m. on Aug. 18 at Capital Indoor Stadium. Team USA has already qualified for the quarterfinals, which will be played Aug. 20 at Capital Indoor Stadium. China’s record falls to 2-2.

McCutcheon returned to the sidelines for the first time since the Aug. 9 attack on the parents of his wife, Elisabeth, and a Chinese tour guide in Beijing that caused the death of his father-in-law Todd Bachman and severely injured his mother-in-law, Barbara Bachman.

Barbara Bachman, Elisabeth and two of her sisters who had come to Beijing were all back in the United States before the match began.

“I wouldn’t have come back if I wasn’t ready,” McCutcheon said. “I think it was comforting just getting back in the normal rhythm of the team. All teams have a culture, and I’m certainly a part of ours. So it was great to get back into the game and get going again.”

Clay Stanley (Honolulu, Hawai’i) led the U.S. Men with 14 points on 12 kills, one ace and one block. Riley Salmon (League City, Texas) added 10 points on nine kills and one ace.

Kevin Hansen (Newport Beach, Calif.) got his first Olympic start at setter for starter Lloy Ball (Fort Wayne, Ind.) and was credited with 20 running sets and 41 still sets with one fault. He also scored three points on two kills and an ace.

“Any time we win 3-0 it’s nice, and this is our first 3-0 match (at the Olympics),” Hansen said. “We executed and played well against a good Chinese team.”

McCutcheon says his team still has work to do.

“I’m happy to win. I thought the guys played OK,” McCutcheon said. “But I think we need to improve in a lot of areas if we hope to progress as far in the tournament as we can.”

Among other scorers, David Lee (Alpine, Calif.) scored nine points on five kills, two blocks and two aces. Ryan Millar (Palmdale, Calif.) scored nine points on seven kills and two blocks. Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) scored six points on six kills.

Sean Rooney (Wheaton, Ill.) and Gabe Gardner (San Clemente, Calif.) each scored two points on two kills.

Libero Rich Lambourne (Tustin, Calif.) was credited with nine digs.

Yingchao Fang led China with 13 points on 11 kills, one block and one ace.

McCutcheon started Priddy and Salmon at outside hitter, Lee and Millar at middle blocker, Stanley at opposite, Hansen at setter and Lambourne at libero.

Tom Hoff (Park Ridge, Ill.), Scott Touzinsky (St. Louis, Mo.), Gardner and Rooney all played as substitutes.

The first set stayed close as the U.S. Men held a slim 8-7 lead at the first technical timeout and 16-14 at the second. With the United States leading 22-21, a Millar kill put Team USA up by two. China took a timeout, but a Stanley kill gave Team USA the set point. Millar’s serve went long to make it 24-22, but another Stanley kill ended the set.

The U.S. used the momentum to carry it into the second set and jumped to an 8-2 lead at the first technical timeout and increased it to 16-5 at the second. With the U.S. leading 18-5, China made a 4-1 run, but the United States ended the rally.

The United States led 8-5 at the first technical timeout of the third set and increased the lead to 9-5. China came back and pulled to within one point at 10-9 and then 11-10. But Team USA took advantage of a Chinese error, an ace by Priddy and a block from Millar to make it 14-10. A China kill made it 14-11, but the U.S. scored three more straight points and China never recovered.

No. Name (Pos., Height, Age., Hometown, College)
1 - Lloy Ball (S, 6-8, 36, Woodburn, Ind., IPFW)
2 - Sean Rooney (OH, 6-9, 25, Wheaton, Ill., Pepperdine)
4 - David Lee (MB, 6-8, 26, Alpine, Calif., Long Beach State)
5 - Rich Lambourne (L, 6-3, 33, Tustin, Calif., BYU)
8 - Reid Priddy (OH, 6-5, 30, Richmond, Va., Loyola Marymount)
9 - Ryan Millar (MB, 6-8, 30, Palmdale, Calif., BYU)
10 - Riley Salmon (OH, 6-6, 32, League City, Texas, Pierce College)
12 - (captain) Tom Hoff (MB, 6-8, 35, Park Ridge, Ill., Long Beach State)
13 - Clay Stanley (OPP, 6-9, 30, Honolulu, Hawai'i, Hawai'i)
14 - Kevin Hansen (S, 6-5, 26, Newport Beach, Calif., Stanford)
15 - Gabe Gardner (OPP, 6-9, 32, San Clemente, Calif., Stanford)
18 - Scott Touzinsky (OH, 6-6, 26, St. Louis, Mo., Long Beach State)

Head Coach: Hugh McCutcheon
Team Leader: Rob Browning
Interim Head Coach: Ron Larsen
Second Assistant Coach: John Speraw
Consultant Coach: Marv Dunphy
Technical Consultant: Jamie Morrison
Scout: Carl McGown
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock

Schedule and Results
Aug. 10: USA def. Venezuela, 3-2 (25-19, 25-18, 22-25, 21-25, 15-10)
Aug. 12: USA def. Italy, 3-1 (24-26, 25-22, 25-15, 25-21)
Aug. 14: USA def. Bulgaria, 3-1 (27-29, 25-21, 25-14, 26-24
Aug. 16: USA def. China, 3-0 (25-22, 25-12, 25-18)
Aug. 18 vs. Japan, 10 p.m., Capital Indoor Stadium
Aug. 20 Quarterfinals
Aug. 22 Semifinals
Aug. 24 Gold and Bronze medal matches