U.S. Men Beat Costa Rica to Open Pan Am Cup

June 02, 2008, 12 a.m. (ET)
B.J. Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone:  719-228-6800 
E-Mail: bj.evans@usav.org

ANAHEIM, Calif. (June 2, 2008) - Led by Evan Patak with 11 points and Nate Meerstein with 10, the U.S. Men's National Team defeated Costa Rica 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-17) on Monday in the first match of the 2008 Pan American Cup in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

A group of young players are representing the United States in Canada and they are now 1-0 in the tournament. On Tuesday, they will play Mexico (6 p.m., PDT) for the chance to advance straight to Friday's semifinal round.

In the tournament's other group, the Dominican Republic defeated Puerto Rico, 3-1 (25 20, 25-19, 22-25, 25- 21) and Canada beat Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0 (25-12, 25-13, 25-13).

Every player on the U.S. roster competed Monday and everyone scored at least one point except libero Alfee Reft (Oxnard, Calif.).

Patak (Pleasanton, Calif.) scored his 11 points on 10 kills and the United States' only ace. Meerstein (La Porte City, Iowa) had eight kills and two blocks. Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) scored seven points.

Andrew Hein (Carol Stream, Ill.), who is serving as the team's captain, scored six points. Nick Scheftic (Santa Barbara, Calif.) added five. Matt Proper (Meadville, Pa.) and Jayson Jablonsky (Yorba Linda, Calif.) each contributed three points. Robert Tarr (Cape Canaveral, Fla.) and Tyler Hildebrand (Mesa, Ariz.) each scored two points and Jonathan Winder (Irvine, Calif.) and Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.) each had one.

Reft was credited with 18 successful serve receptions in 19 attempts. Setters Winder - who started the first set - and Hildebrand - who started the second and third - helped the team convert 45 percent of their attack attempts into points.

Costa Rica, who was led by Orozco Calderon with nine points, converted 35 percent of its kill attempts into points. The United States out-hit Costa Rica 42-20 and out-blocked its opponent 8-2.

The event Web site is at www.volleyball.ca/index.asp?page=295.
U.S. Men's National Team for the Pan American Cup
1 Matt Anderson (OH, 6-10, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
4 Evan Patak (Opp., 6-8, Pleasanton, Calif., UC Santa Barbara)
5 Robert Tarr (OH, 6-6, Cape Canaveral, Fla., Long Beach State)
6 Matt Proper (Opp., 6-7, Meadville, Pa., Penn State)
7 Nate Meerstein (MB, 6-9, La Porte City, Iowa, Penn State)
8 Jayson Jablonsky (OH, 6-5, Yorba Linda, Calif., UC Irvine)
9 Jonathan Winder (S, 6-8, Irvine, Calif., Pepperdine)
11 Tyler Hildebrand (S, 6-5, Mesa, Ariz., Long Beach State)
12 Andrew Hein (MB, 6-11, Carol Stream, Ill., Pepperdine)
13 Nick Scheftic (MB, 6-11, Santa Barbara, Calif., UCLA)
15 Paul Lotman (OH, 6-7, Lakewood, Calif. , Long Beach State)
19 Alfee Reft (L, 5-10, Oxnard, Calif., Hawai'i)

Head coach: Alan Knipe
Assistant coach: John Hawks
Team Manager: Bill Neville
Therapist/Trainer: Jeffrey O'Brien
Medical Support: Aimee Miyazawa
Results and Schedule (All times PDT)

GROUP A
Canada 1-0
Dominican Republic 1-0
Puerto Rico 0-1
Trinidad & Tobago 0-1

GROUP B
USA 1-0
Costa Rica 0-1
Mexico 0-0

June 2
Dominican Republic def. Puerto Rico, 3-1 (25 20, 25-19, 22-25, 25- 21)
Canada def. Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0 (25-12, 25-13, 25-13)
USA def. Costa Rica, 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-17)

June 3
Canada vs. Puerto Rico, 10 a.m.
Dominican Republic vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 4 p.m.
USA vs. Mexico, 6 p.m.

June 4
Puerto Rico vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 1 p.m.
Mexico vs. Costa Rica, 4 p.m.
Canada vs. Dominican Republic, 6 p.m.

June 5
Quarterfinals
Group A 3rd vs. Group B 2nd, 6 p.m.
Group B 3rd vs. Group A 2nd, 8 p.m.

June 6
Classification 5, 1 p.m.
Group B 1st vs. quarterfinal winner, 4 p.m.
Group A 1st vs. quarterfinal winner, 6 p.m.

June 7
Classification 6/7, 9 a.m.
3rd-place match, noon
Final, 2 p.m.
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