COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 21, 2008) - The U.S. Men’s Sitting Volleyball Team played three friendly matches against Team Canada at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Alberta this summer and won all three.
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USA verses Canada, July 18, 2008
The U.S. Men’s Sitting Team won the first of three matches, 25-23, 25-7, 25-14.
In set 1 the United States started Brent Rasmussen, Hugo Storer, Roderick Green, James Stuck, Eric Duda and Brad Johnson. The United States played very tentatively in the first set. The team was out of synch and making critical unforced errors.
"It was good to see the team play through and win the set,” Coach Bill Hamiter said.
In the second set Edgar LaForest replaced Hugo Storer and Josh Franklin replaced Roderick Green at 15-5. The second set was a total turnaround from the first set. The team was in system and siding out well with only two errors. Team USA dominated at the net. Canada did not serve well, which helped Team USA to an easy victory.
In the third set, Team USA started Brent, Hugo, Roderick, James, Erick and Dan Regan replaced Brad Johnson. The set was tight early but Team USA went on an 8-0 run and didn't look back winning the set 25-14.
"I was very pleased with our play in the second and third set,” Hamiter said. “We began very slow in the first set but turned our play around. We had several players getting some needed international experience and several players at key positions."
The team hit .339 and blocked well. Duda was the high point person with nine kills, two aces and a block. Regan turned in a good performance for his first international play hitting .667 with two kills and a block.
USA verses Canada, July 19, 2008
Team USA hit its stride in the second of three friendly matches being played in Alberta. Team USA won in three straight sets, 25-11, 25-14, 25-14.
All of the U.S. players saw significant playing time as Hamiter rotated his lineup and subbed liberally. The starters for the first set were Brent Rasmussen, Edgar LaForest, Roderick Green, James Stuck, Eric Duda and Brad Johnson. The United States used its perfect passing to sideout serve 100 percent of the time and logged 15 kills, three blocks and an ace in the set.
In the second set Hugo Storer started for Edgar and Dan Regan started in place of Johnson. The set began with both teams siding out for the first six points. At that point, Team USA dominated the net to go on a six-point run and never looked back. Team USA won the set hitting 14 kills, making five blocks and serving three aces.
The starters for the third set were LaForest, Storer, Green, Stuck, Josh Franklin and Johnson. The U.S. team played well and Canada provided points off of nine errors en route to the third-set win. Green scored 11 points in the match to lead all players on seven kills, three blocks and one ace. Duda had 10 points and a 0.52 hitting percentage. Storer provided nine points for Team USA.
"We passed extremely well and was able to stay in system, putting a lot of pressure on Canada's defense," team captain Rasmussen said.
Hamiter was very pleased with the play of several of his newest players.
"Roderick Green continues to impress me with how well he is picking up the game, seeing blocks and moving on the court,” Hamiter said. "The team attacked well early made a few hitting errors late in the match but turned in a good performance overall."
USA verses Canada, July 20, 2008
The final match of the three match series in Alberta concluded like the first two with Team USA winning, 25-7, 25-15, 25-11. Team USA started with Brent Rasmussen, Hugo Storer, Roderick Green, James Stuck, Eric Duda and Brad Johnson. Josh Franklin was subbed in to serve for Johnson.
The first set was a blowout with Team USA maintaining great focus and intensity throughout the set. They scored off of 13 kills, five blocks and three aces while limiting their errors to only four in the set.
In the second set, Edgar LaForest replaced Green. Franklin subbed again to serve for Johnson. The set began in reverse of the first set with Team USA losing focus and making seven unforced errors early. With Canada in the lead, Team USA began to pull together and play better. With the score tied at 10-10, Team USA went on a five-point run to take the lead. Following a kill from Duda, Team USA went into the second technical time out up 16-11. After trading a few sideouts, Team USA took the set with kills and blocks from Rasmussen and Johnson.
In the third set, Green returned to the lineup in place of Storer and Dan Regan replaced Johnson. Team USA had a strong start, taking a 6-0 lead, which it never relinquished. Team USA had 13 kills, three blocks and three aces to win the set.
Team USA hit 0.44 as a team. Rasmussen lead Team USA scoring 14 points from five kills, six blocks and three aces. Johnson was the second leading scorer with 10 (seven kills and three blocks). Green turned in another good performance hitting 0.75 and gaining six kills, two blocks and one ace for nine points. Duda had eight points (six kills, one block and one ace) and LaForest had eight points (seven kills and one ace).
"It was wonderful to see the balanced scoring and good execution from our players,” Hamiter said. “We had a very good blocking match, especially from Brent. I didn't like our loss of focus and high number of errors in the second set, but I did like how we managed to regain our composer. This was a good weekend for the team gaining a significant amount of international experience for all of our players, especially our new players. We have several components of the game we need to work on but you have to be satisfied with not dropping a set in three matches."