U.S. Men's National Team Update - Jan. 23, 2009

Jan. 26, 2009, 1:04 p.m. (ET)

B.J. Hoeptner Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: (719) 228-6800       
E-Mail: bj.evans@usav.org 

ANAHEIM, Calif. (Jan. 23, 2009) – U.S. middle blocker and 2004 Olympian Phil Eatherton (Glencoe, Mo.) has joined ACH Volley, the Slovenian club team for which middle blocker Delano Thomas (Sacramento, Calif.) also plays.

A Jan. 6 press release issued by the team said: “This decision of the club’s management is based on the numerous injuries of the players in this position. The 35-year old player from St. Louis is also in the extended list of the American national team and he will remain with ACH Volley until the end of this season.”

A press release issued on Jan. 9 reports that Thomas has had successful knee surgery: “Thomas Delano was operated on Thursday in the traumatology (sic) department of the University Medical Centre Ljubljana due to the injury of the left knee. His doctor Prof. MatjaĆŸ Veselko, MD, described the procedure as very successful. A short rehabilitation, which will be monitored by the club`s doctors, now awaits Thomas and according to the first assessments by the doctors Thomas is expected to start training in the first half of February.”

Evan Patak (Pleasanton, Calif.) left Vienna’s Aon hotVolleys on Jan. 9 after amicably settling a contract dispute, according to Austrian news reports. He has since joined the Greek team PAOK Thessaloniki, where Americans Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.) and Theo Brunner (Ridgefield, Conn.) are also playing. Patak has not yet played in an official match for PAOK. Patak previously played in Greece in 2007-08 for Aris Marmouris.


The University of Hawai’i announced on Jan. 21 that Clay Stanley (Honolulu) will be among this year's four inductees to the University of Hawai'i Sports Circle of Honor. Stanley still holds the Hawai’i record for most kills in a match (50), set in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation playoff match against UCLA in 1999.

The induction will take place on Jan. 24.

Stanley, an opposite, is currently playing for Russia’s Zenit Kazan along with U.S. setter Lloy Ball (Fort Wayne, Ind.). The team sits in third place in the Russian Super League after defeating Nova Novokuybyshevsk, 3-1 (20-25, 25-17, 25-16, 25-13) on Jan. 18. Stanley led Kazan with 16 points on 15 kills and one ace. Ball scored three points on one kill and two blocks. Kazan will play Dynamo Moscow on Jan. 24.

In CEV Indesit Champions League play, Kazan will face Eatherton and ACH Volley in the next round between Feb. 10 and 12. Kazan finished second in pool play after finishing with a 1-3 (24-26, 20-25, 25-18, 18-25) loss to France’s Paris Volley on Jan. 13 and then 3-1 (25-13, 25-19, 24-26, 25-20) victory over Netherlands’ Piet Zoomers/D Apeldoorn on Jan. 21.

In fourth place in the Super League standings is Fakel Novy Urengoi featuring U.S. setter Kevin Hansen (Newport Beach, Calif.) and outside hitter Sean Rooney (Wheaton, Ill.). Rooney is back with the team after sitting out several matches last year due to injury and he scored 19 points on 16 kills, two blocks and one ace in the team’s 3-2 (25-23, 27-25, 25-27, 23-25, 15-13) victory over Metalloinvest Stary Oskol.

Fakel will play Gazprom-Ugra Surgut on Jan. 24.

Surgut fell to Ural Ufa, featuring U.S. opposite Gabe Gardner (San Clemente, Calif.), on Jan. 17.  Gardner scored 15 points on 14 kills and one block in Ufa’s 3-2 (25-18, 20-25, 22-25, 25-18, 15-11) victory. Ufa will play Yaroslavich Yaroslavl on Jan. 24.

Lokomotiv Belogorie and its new libero Rich Lambourne (Tustin, Calif.) is in sixth place in the Russian Super League after defeating Yaroslavich Yaroslavl, 3-0 (36-34, 27-25, 25-21) on Jan. 18. Belogorie will play Ugra-Samotlor Nizhnevartovsk on Jan. 24.

In CEV Cup play, Belogorie defeated Greece’s GC Lamia twice in January (3-1 and 3-0) to advance to the challenge round where it will play France’s Beauvais Oise twice in February.

U.S. outside hitter Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) and his Russian team Lokomotiv Novosibirsk are in seventh place in the Russian Super League and most recently defeated Ugra-Samotlor Nizhnevartovsk, 3-0 (25:22 25:21 25:17) on Jan. 18. Priddy scored seven points on two kills, two blocks and three aces. Novosibirsk will face NOVA Novokuybyshevsk on Jan. 24.

Novosibirsk was eliminated from the CEV Cup after splitting two matches with Spain’s Unicaja Almeria in January.

All the U.S. players in Russia are scheduled to take part in the Russian All-Star Game on Jan. 30. Ball, Stanley and Lambourne will be starters while Gardner, Hansen, Priddy and Rooney have been tagged as substitutes.


U.S. middle blocker Ryan Millar (Palmdale, Calif.) and outside hitter Scott Touzinsky (St. Louis, Mo.) have posted two victories in January with their Turkish team Istanbul Buyuksehir Belediye.

On Jan. 11, they defeated Ziraat Bankasi, 3-0 (30-28, 25-17, 25-18). Touzinsky scored 12 points on 12 kills while Millar had eight points on three kills, four blocks and one ace. On Jan. 18, they defeated SGK, 3-0 (25-19, 25-17, 30-28). Touzinsky scored 10 points on 10 kills while Millar had six points on four kills, one block and one ace.

Istanbul is in second place in the league.

U.S. opposite Brook Billings (Santa Barbara, Calif.) led his Turkish team Fenerbahce with 20 points on 18 kills and two blocks and Fenerbahce defeated Polis Akademisi Ve Koleji, 3-2 (25-15, 24-26, 25-17, 12-25, 15-13) on Jan. 17. On Jan. 11, Billings had 13 points on 12 kills and one block in a 3-0 (25-20, 25-19, 25-14) victory over Bozkurt Belediye. Fenerbahce is in fifth place in the Turkish league.


U.S. middle blocker David Lee (Alpine, Calif.) and his Italian team Trenkwalder Modena have lost their last two matches in Italy’s Serie A League. On Jan. 11, Modena fell to Sisley Treviso, 0-3 (25-20, 25-19, 25-18) as Lee played one set and scored three points on three kills. On Jan. 18, Modena lost to Copra Nordmeccanica Piacenza, 1-3 (25-20, 20-25, 21-25, 21-15). Lee scored five points on two kills and three blocks.
Modena (7-11) is in ninth place in the league and will face league-leading Bre Banca Lannutti Cuneo (14-4) on Jan. 25.


It has been a busy January so far for Tom Hoff (Park Ridge, Ill.) and his Greek team Olympiacos.

The team is holding on to its second-place standing in the Greek volleyball league by beating GS Lamia, 3-0 (27-25, 25-17, 25-21) on Jan. 10. Hoff had two points in the match on one kill and one block.

A referees strike forced the postponement of Greek matches for the weekend of Jan. 17.

Olympiacos advanced in the CEV Cup by splitting two matches with France’s Stade Poitevin Poitiers, 3-0 and 3-1. It will face Greek league rivals Panathinaikos in the next round in February.

Lotman had 23 points for PAOK on Jan. 10 as it defeated Aris Marmouris AE, 3-2 (25-16, 20-25, 27-29, 25-22, 18-16). Lotman’s points came on 20 kills, two blocks and one ace. Brunner scored 14 points on eight kills and six blocks. PAOK is in eighth place in the Greek league.

Matt Denmark (Edmund, Okla.) and his team AO Finikas Sirou fell to EA Patron Lux, 0-3 (26-28, 19-25, 23-25) on Jan. 10. Denmark had four points on three kills and one block. AO Finikas Sirou is in ninth place in the Greek league.

Nils Nielsen (Fallbrook, Calif.) and his team MGS Apollon Kalamarias fell to league-leading Panathinaikos, 0-3 (21-25, 18-25, 19-25) on Jan. 10. Nielsen had five points on four kills and one block. MGS Apollon Kalamarias is in 11th place in the Greek league.


U.S. setter Jonathan Winder (Irvine, Calif.) and his French team Tourcoing have won their last two matches, defeating AS Cannes, 3-2 (27-29, 25-23, 19-25, 25-19, 15-12) on Jan. 11 and Tours, 3-1 (25-18, 27-25, 22-25, 25-20) on Jan. 16. Winder played in both matches – he started the third, fourth and fifth sets against Cannes – but did not score.