U.S. Men's Update: Lotman in Poland Finals
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (April 18, 2014) – Outside hitter Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.) and his Plus Liga team Asseco Resovia have advanced to the finals of the Plus Liga playoffs where they will face PGE Skra Bełchatów. In the semifinals, Resovia came back from a 0-2 deficit to win its next three straight matches over ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle. In the final match on April 17, Resovia won 25-19, 17-25, 25-22, 25-21. Lotman entered the match as a substitute in the first set and started the next three. He scored 11 points on nine kills, one block and one ace. The final round will begin on April 22. To view a photo gallery of the match, click here.
Libero Erik Shoji(Honolulu, Hawaii), middle blocker Andy Hein (Carol Stream, Ill.) and their Austrian team Hypo Tirol are 2-1 in their best-of-seven playoff series final against defending champion SK Posojilnica Aich / Dob. In the most recent match on April 16, Hypo Tirol won, 21-25, 25-14, 24-26, 25-22, 15-11. Shoji was credited with 16 receptions, 69 percent positive. Hein scored five points on four kills and one block. The next match is scheduled for April 19.
U.S. setter Kawika Shoji (Honolulu) and outside hitter Scott Touzinsky (St. Louis, Mo.) and their German league team Berlin Recycling Volleys will play in the finals of the German league after defeating TV Ingersoll Bühl, 3-0 in the semifinals. TV Ingersoll Bühl includes U.S. players Nick Vogel (San Diego, Calif.) and Joe Sunder. In the final match on April 13, Berlin beat Bühl, 25-17, 22-25, 25-13, 25-21. Touzinsky started the first two sets and scored four points on four kills. Shoji scored two points on two aces and set Berlin to a 48.1 kill percent. Sunder led Bühl with 14 points on 11 kills, one block and two aces. Vogel added 10 points on five kills, a match-high four blocks and one ace. He was named the MVP for Bühl. Berlin will play Friedrichshafen in the best-of-five final series, which begins April 27. To view a photo gallery of the match, click here.
PLAY IN THE USA
There will be several opportunities for fans to see the U.S. Men’s National Team play in the United States this summer.
On May 15-18, the U.S. Men and U.S. Women will compete at the NORCECA World Championship Qualifiers at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The U.S. Men will compete against teams from Guatemala, Haiti and St. Lucia for the opportunity to compete at the FIVB World Championship on Aug. 30-Sept. 21 in Poland. For more information, click here.
Immediately following the World Championship Qualifier, the U.S. Men will head to Bulgaria to begin their 2014 FIVB World League campaign. The U.S. Men will play three World League matches in the United States this year: June 6-7 against Russia at the Pyramid in Long Beach, Calif.; June 13-14 against Serbia at the University of Illinois at Chicago and June 20-21 against Bulgaria at the Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates, Ill. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.
HASSLING THE HOFF
Tom Hoff, a three-time Olympian and team captain of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Men’s Volleyball gold medal team, is helping raise money for the Sepsis Alliance and will attend their event, Spike Out Sepsis, on June 21 in Dublin, Ohio.
The group’s web site says, “Spike Out Sepsis is a unique 6-on-6 sand volleyball tournament designed to raise awareness and funds for Sepsis Alliance. Sometimes called blood poisoning, sepsis is the body's often deadly response to infection or injury. Sepsis Alliance aims to promote raise awareness in both patients and healthcare providers of sepsis.
“Last year's Spike Out Sepsis was a smashing success. Once again, we will be taking over The Bogey in Dublin, Ohio for the 2014 Spike Out Sepsis Championship. The names of the winners will be added to the Sepsis Cup to eternally commemorate their awesomeness.”
For more information, visit the web site.
Setter Micah Christenson (Honolulu, Hawaii) and his USC Trojans finished in eighth place in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) and will play No. 4 BYU on April 19 in the first round of the MPSF Tournament. Christenson was named to the 2014 All-MPSF first team. Christenson leads the nation in assists (11.69) and is 14th in digs (2.36, fifth in the MPSF). He tops USC in assists (1,017) and aces (25). He is a finalist for the Off The Block Lloy Ball Award presented to the nation's top collegiate setter.
Outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) and his Russian team Zenit Kazan finished the regular season in first place in the Super League. In the final match of the regular season, Kazan defeated Gazprom Yugra Surgut, 25-19, 25-20, 25-21 on April 12. Anderson led his team with 14 points on 12 kills and two aces. To view a photo gallery of the match, click here. Kazan must now wait to find out who it will play in the next round of the playoffs. Middle blocker Max Holt and Dinamo Moscow finished in third place in the regular season and is leading Prikamye Perm, 2-0 in the first round of the playoffs. In the second playoff match on April 16, Dinamo won, 25-16, 25-14, 25-15. Holt scored seven points on five kills and two blocks. The teams will play again on April 19.
Middle blocker David Smith (Saugus, Calif.), outside hitter Jayson Jablonsky (Yorba Linda, Calif.) and their French league team Tours won their quarterfinal playoff series over Nantes Rezé, 2-0. In the second match on April 16, Tours won 25-22, 22-25, 25-22, 25-21. Smith scored 10 points on five kills, three blocks and two aces. Jablonsky played as a substitute and started the fourth set and scored six points on three kills and a match-high three aces. He was also credited with 11 receptions, 64 percent positive. Tours will play Chaumont in the semifinals starting on April 26.
Middle blocker Futi Tavana (Kalaheo, Hawaii) and Toulouse are through for the season after losing to Chaumont in the quarterfinals, 2-0. In the second match on April 16, Chaumont won, 25-14, 21-25, 25-22, 23-25, 15-13. Tavana finished with seven points on five kills, one block and one ace.
Outside hitter Jeff Menzel (Santa Barbara, Calif.) and his Belgium league team Noliko Maaseik are done for the season after going 6-4 in the playoffs and finishing in third place. In their second-to-last match on April 9, Maaseik beat VC Argex Duvel Puurs, 25-19, 19-25, 25-19, 25-23. Menzel scored seven points on six kills and one block. Menzel did not play in the team’s final match.