2011 Sarajevo Open - Day 1

May 28, 2011, 7:13 p.m. (ET)

Edgar Miraku is the head coach of the U.S. Men's Sitting Volleyball Team, which is based at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond. On May 28-30, the team is playing in the Sarajevo Open in Bosnia-Herzegovina

The draw in “Sarajevo Open” placed our U.S. Men’s Sitting team in the pool with Netherland’s national team, the German Bayer team and the hosts Fantomi.

Our guys opened the day playing against the seasoned Fantomi. We started a bit slow and Fantomi took the early lead and widened it as the set went on. The second set was a better performance for Team USA as it battled all along. The team play was more consistent, and we were able to capitalize on several offensive plays.

At the end Fantomi won the second set by two. The high scorer for the match was team captain Brent Rasmussen with 8 points. As a team we passed 1.73.

In the second match versus the Germans, again Team USA fell behind in the first set. However it bounced back, sticking together and pulling out the second set, taking the match to three sets.

The third set, played to 15, was characterized by several unforced errors on our part. The Germans won the third set, 15-7.

The match against The Netherlands was a closer match all along. Team USA started strong, but after the midway point, the teams kept trading points with the score being tied at 20. Three consecutive unforced errors for Team USA sealed the first set win for the Dutch, 25-21.

The second set, our guys played more focused and determined. The passing and defense improved compared to the first set as a result of adjustments. The score was close throughout the set with either team taking the lead on and off. After a tied score at 24, 25, and 26, again the Dutch team capitalized on our hitting errors to win the third set 28-26. Team USA passed 2.0 for the match and the leading scorer was Eric Duda with 8 points.

Tomorrow morning we play Start Poland.

Results: Fantomi def. USA, 25-9, 25-23
Bayer (Germany) def. USA, 25-10, 23-25, 15-7
Netherlands def. USA, 25-21, 28-26

U.S. Men’s Sitting Volleyball Team
Name (Hometown/Resident athletes at the University of Central Oklahoma are noted) 
Dan Regan (St. Louis, Mo./Edmond, Okla.) 
Charlie Swearingen (Gulfport, Miss./Edmond, Okla.) 
Ed O'Neil (Amherst, Mass./Edmond, Okla.) 
Eric Duda (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Edmond, Okla.) 
James Stuck (New Kensington, Pa./Edmond, Okla.) 
Edgardo Laforest (San Juan, Puerto Rico) 
Brent Rasmussen (Omaha, Neb.) 
J. Dee Marinko  (Newcastle, Okla.)

Head CoachEdgar Miraku (Elbasan, Albania)
Assistant Coach: Dixie Collins (Marshall, Va.)
Athletic Trainer: Chad Miller
Statistician: Patricia Stein

About the Host City
Sarajevo is the capitol of Bosnia-Herzegovina. It is the largest urban area and houses the capitol of Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Sarajevo Canton headquarters. The city is made up of sacral buildings, equally architectural and artistic mosques from the Ottoman Empire, catholic and orthodox churches and synagogues. Approximately 297,416 residents call the capital city home.