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U.S. Men Surge Past Dominican Republic

Sept. 24, 2013, 11 p.m. (ET)

LANGLEY, B.C., Canada (Sept. 24, 2013) – The U.S. Men’s National Team started slow but picked up steam in a 25-19, 25-17, 25-9 victory over Dominican Republic on Tuesday at Langley Events Center.

Max Holt serves as members of the U.S. Men's staff work in the background
  Max Holt serves as members of the U.S. Men's Team staff work
  behind him during the match against Dominican Republic.

With the victory, the U.S. Men (2-0) have won Group A and will advance directly to Friday's semifinals. The top two pool winners in terms of points advance. Cuba (2-0) also won its pool, but it has nine points while the U.S. has 10. Canada's match against Mexico on Wednesday will determine the third pool winner and second team to advance to the semifinals.

The events are being live streamed at langleyeventscentre.com/continentalvolleyball. The Championship winner will qualify for the FIVB Grand Champions Cup in November in Japan.

Immediately following Tuesday’s match, U.S. Head Coach John Speraw (Los Angeles) huddled with his team to praise their play through the match.

“I was happy that even when we were ahead 2-0, we continued to play very hard and we continued to improve throughout the match,” Speraw said. “I thought that third set we were better than the first. That’s what this tournament is all about is for us to continue to improve on what we’re doing on our side of the net.”

The U.S. led the Dominican in kills (39-26), blocks (10-4) and aces (9-0).

Outside hitter Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) led all scorers with 15 points on a match-high 11 kills, one block and three aces. Priddy played his first full competitive match with the team since the 2012 Olympic Games.

“It’s fun to get out there. I really like what's going on. I like the staff. I like the environment,” Priddy said.  “Tonight, the Dominican dug a lot of balls and they have a lot of guys that can hit. I thought we did a great job tonight of staying in the moment and fighting for each point.”

Outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) and middle blocker Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) each finished with 10 points. Anderson scored on nine kills and one ace. Holt scored on six attacks, three blocks and one ace.

Middle blocker Futi Tavana (Kalaheo, Hawaii) and opposite Carson Clark (Santa Barbara, Calif.) each scored seven points. Tavana had five attacks and two blocks. Clark added three attacks, one block and three aces.

Setter Micah Christenson (Honolulu) totaled five points on one kill, three blocks and one ace. Christenson was also credited with 22 running sets and no faults. Libero Erik Shoji (Honolulu) was credited with 12 excellent receptions and seven digs. Priddy led the team in digs with 10 and Anderson was credited with 12 excellent receptions.

Outside hitter Jeff Menzel (Santa Barbara) entered the match as a substitute in the third set and score four points on four attacks.

Speraw started Anderson and Priddy at outside hitter, Holt and Tavana at middle blocker, Clark at opposite, Christenson at setter and Shoji at libero. Menzel played as a substitute in the third set.

In the first set, the score was tied 19-19 when Tavana scored on a quick kill. Priddy took the serve and ran the table, serving for the final five points of the match, including an ace, two kills by Anderson and a block from Tavana.

The second-set score was tied 7-7 when the Dominican Republic’s serve went out of bounds to give the U.S. an 8-7 lead at the first technical timeout (TTO). Priddy got the serve and scored with an ace to give the U.S. a two-point lead. With the U.S. leading 10-8, Tavana served for five straight points to put Team USA ahead for good at 15-8.

The U.S. never trailed in the third set, leading 8-3 at the first TTO. Later, with the U.S. leading 17-8, Christenson served for six straight points, including an ace, to put the match out of reach for the Dominicans.

2013 U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team
NORCECA Men’s Continental Championship
Sept. 23-28 in Langley, B.C., Canada

U.S. Roster for the NORCECA Men’s Continental Championship
No. - Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
1 - Matt Anderson (OH, 6-9, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
2 - Sean Rooney (OH, 6-10, Wheaton, Ill., Pepperdine)
3 - Kyle Caldwell (S, 6-8, Newport Beach, Calif., UCLA)
4 - David Lee (MB, 6-8, Alpine, Calif., Long Beach State)
8 - Reid Priddy (OH, 6-4, Richmond, Va., Loyola Marymount)
9 - Murphy Troy (Opp, 6-8, St. Louis, Mo., Southern California)
11 - Micah Christenson (S, 6-6, Honolulu, Southern California)
14 – Jeff Menzel (OH, 6-6, Santa Barbara, Calif., UC Santa Barbara)
15 - Carson Clark (Opp, 6-6, Santa Barbara, Calif., UC Irvine)
17 - Max Holt (MB, 6-10, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State)
21 - Futi Tavana (MB, 6-7, Kalaheo, Hawaii, BYU)
22 - Erik Shoji (L, 6-0, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford)

Head Coach: John Speraw (Los Angeles)
Team Manager: Anton Willert (Berlin, Germany)
Assistant Coach: Matt Fuerbringer (Costa Mesa, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: Mike Wall (Santa Barbara, Calif.)
Consultant Coach: Andrea Becker (Martinez, Calif.)
Consultant Coach: Charlie Sullivan (Springfield, Mass.)
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock (Storm Lake, Iowa)
Team Doctor: Dr. Chris Lee

NORCECA Men’s Continental Championships Schedule
All times PT
Sept. 23
United States def. St. Lucia, 25-12, 25-10, 25-11 (Group A)
Cuba def. Bahamas, 25-16, 25-12, 25-7 (Group B)
Canada def. Guatemala, 25-10, 25-10, 25-10 (Group C)

Sept. 24
Mexico def. Guatemala, 25-18, 25-14, 25-23 (Group C)
Cuba def. Puerto Rico, 25-17, 22-25, 25-22, 25-22 (Group B)
United States def. Dominican Republic, 25-19, 25-17, 25-9  (Group A)

Sept. 25
Puerto Rico def. Bahamas, 25-10, 25-17, 25-20 (Group B)
Dominican Republic def. St. Lucia, 25-19, 25-12, 25-23 (Group A)
Canada def. Mexico, 25-22, 25-15, 25-12 (Group C)

Sept. 26
9th-Place Final: Bahamas def. Guatemala, 25-18, 25-21, 25-23
Quarterfinals: Puerto Rico def. Mexico, 25-17, 25-17, 25-22
Quarterfinals, Cuba def. Dominican Republic, 25-21, 21-25, 23-25, 25-16, 15-12

Sept. 27
7th Place Final, 4 p.m.: Bahamas vs. St. Lucia
Semifinals, 6 p.m.: United States vs. Puerto Rico
Semifinals, 8 p.m.: Cuba vs. Canada

Sept. 28
Fifth-Place Match, 4 p.m.
Bronze-Medal Match, 6 p.m.
Championship Finals, 8 p.m.

Past Champions
1969:  Cuba (USA, third)
1971:  Cuba (USA, second)
1973:  USA
1975:  Cuba (USA, third)
1977:  Cuba (USA, fifth)
1979:  Cuba (USA, fifth)
1981:  Cuba (USA, second)
1983:  USA
1985:  USA
1987:  Cuba (USA, second)
1989:  Cuba (USA, third)
1991:  Cuba (USA, second)
1993:  Cuba (USA, second)
1995:  Cuba (USA, second)
1997:  Cuba (USA, second)
1999:  USA
2001:  Cuba (USA, second)
2003:  USA
2005:  USA
2007:  USA
2009:  Cuba (USA, second)
2011:  Cuba (USA, second)


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