USAV Unveils Boys' Youth Training Team

By BJ Evans | June 03, 2014, 5:04 p.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 22, 2014) – USA Volleyball has selected 19 of the top boys’ players in the United States under the age of 19 for the 2014 U.S. Boys’ Youth National Training Team (BYNTT).

The team will be cut to 12 and compete this summer at the NORCECA Under-19 Continental Championship on July 14-20 in Tulsa, Okla., in conjunction with the USA Volleyball High Performance Championships.

"We're always looking for great talent at the tryouts,” U.S. BYNTT Head Coach Ken Shibuya said. “It's a difficult process to figure out who should be on this team as there are so many quality athletes in the USA. We were able to see a number of terrific players that performed at an elite level at the 2013 USA High Performance Championships and the Holiday Camp. It wasn't hard to pick those guys.

“During the national tryout process, our evaluators did a wonderful job of identifying some other high talent level players and bringing them to the forefront. We selected the training group based on what we felt the needs of the team were.”

The BYNTT includes five outside hitters: T.J. Defalco (Huntington Beach, Calif.), Kyle Ensing (Valencia, Calif.), Collin Mahan (Victor, N.Y.), Corry Short (Lighthouse Point, Fla.) and Jordan Ewert (Antioch, Calif.). Middle blockers on the team are: Kimball Leituala (Long Beach, Calif.), Scott Stadick (Watertown, Wis.), Brandon Oberender (Simi Valley, Calif.) and Kyle Jasuta (Manhattan Beach, Calif.).

Right-side hitters are Donovan Mitchell (Clovis, Calif.), Patrick Gasman (Clovis, Calif.), Dane Leclair (Rochester, N.Y.) and Aaron Strange (San Clemente, Calif.). Setters are Micah Ma’a (Kaneohe, Hawaii), Joshua Tuaniga (Long Beach, Calif.), Dante Chakravorti (Glencoe, Ill.) and Schylar Lillethorup (Apopka, Fla.).

The liberos are Joseph Worsley (Moraga, Calif.) and Matt Douglas (Pacific Palisades, Calif.).

"I believe that we have quality players at all of the positions but I think that we are particularly strong at the outside hitter and libero,” Shibuya said. “Ball control is so important at every level and I feel that will be one of our better areas.

“Libero play in the U.S. is especially good in this age group so we had a lot to pick from.”

Shibuya, who serves as an assistant coach for the Stanford men’s volleyball team, which played in the NCAA Men’s DI-II Championship final this year, will be assisted by Kris Berzins, an assistant with Loyola’s men’s volleyball team, and Brad Keller, an assistant with UCLA’s men’s program.

"It is privilege to coach the Boys' Youth National Team for the 2014 season," said Berzins, who helped Loyola capture the 2014 NCAA Men’s DI-II National Championship. "Competing at the NORCECA Championship is an exciting, competitive challenge, and it's one that I am honored to be a part of."

“I am truly honored and humbled to be selected as part of the USA Youth National Team coaching staff,” Keller said. “It is great to be back in the USA pipeline and I am looking forward to working with both Ken Shibuya and Kris Berzins. We have a talented group of young men from all over the country joining us in Tulsa, Okla., and I am looking forward to representing our country this summer!”

Roster for the 2014 Boys’ Youth National Training Team

Name Last Position Grad Year Hometown Club Region
T.J. Defalco OH 2015 Huntington Beach, CA The HBC Southern California
Kyle Ensing OH 2015 Valencia, CA Legacy VBC Southern California
Collin Mahan OH 2015 Victor, NY Pace Bootlegger Western Empire
Corry Short OH 2015 Lighthouse Point, FL Ocean Bay VBC Florida
Donovan Mitchell Rightside 2016 Clovis, CA Pacific Rim Southern California
Patrick Gasman Rightside/Middle 2015 Clovis, CA Pacific Rim Northern California
Dane Leclair Rightside 2015 Rochester, NY Pace Bootlegger Western Empire
Aaron Strange Rightside 2015 San Clemente, CA Coast Volleyball Southern California
Micah Ma'a Setter/Rightside 2015 Kaneohe, HI Ka Ulukoa Aloha
Joshua Tuaniga Setter 2015 Long Beach, CA The HBC Southern California
Dante Chakravorti Setter 2015 Glencoe, Ill Vortex VBC Great Lakes
Schylar Lillethorup Setter 2015 Apopka, FL Ocean Bay VBC Florida
Kimball Leituala Middle 2015 Long Beach, CA The HBC Southern California
Scott Stadick Middle 2016 Watertown, WI West Allis Badger
Branden Oberender Middle 2015 Simi Valley, CA Bones Southern California
Kyle Jasuta Middle 2015 Manhattan Beach, CA Santa Monica Beach Southern California
Joseph Worsley Libero 2015 Moraga, CA Pacific Rim Northern California
Matt Douglas Libero 2015 Pacific Palisades, CA SMBC Southern California
Jordan Ewert OH 2015 Antioch, CA Pacific Rim Northern California
Head coach: Ken Shibuya
Assistant coach: Kris Berzins
Assistant coach: Brad Keller