Twelve Chosen for U.S. Men's Jr. Team

By BJ Evans | July 23, 2014, 2:10 p.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 23, 2014) – USA Volleyball has chosen the 12 players that will compete in El Salvador on July 28-Aug 3 at the NORCECA Men’s U21 Continental Championship.

After training at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid, N.Y., the training team was cut from 21 players. The team’s head coach will be Dan Friend, the men’s head coach at Lewis University.

Four members of the MJNT played on the 2013 U.S. Boys’ Youth National Team that competed in the FIVB World Championship: setters Christy Blough (Ontario, N.Y.) and Soren Dion-Kindem (Agoura Hills, Calif.) and liberos Kyle Dagostino (Tampa, Fla.) and Evan Enriques (Pahala, Hawaii).

Newcomers to the team are outside hitters Storm Faagata (Long Beach, Calif.), Kupono Fey (Honolulu, Hawaii), George Perinar (Channahon, Ill.), Ben Plaisted (Wauwatosa, Wis.) and Brenden Sander (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and middle blockers Andy Benesh (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.), Jeff Jendryk (Wheaton, Ill.) and Kevin Rakestraw (Newport Beach, Calif.).

Friend will be assisted by Jay Hosack, a men’s assistant at Penn State University, and Sam Shweisky, head coach of the Princeton men’s volleyball team.

Other teams scheduled to compete at the 2014 U21 NORCECA Championships are Barbados, Canada, Cuba, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico and St. Lucia.

The U.S. is scheduled to share a pool with Cuba, Mexico and Nicaragua. The United States is the defending champion of the event, which was last held in 2012 in Colorado Springs, Colo.

2014 U.S. Men’s Junior National Team

No. First Last Position HS Grad Year City State Club or School USAV Region
2 Andy Benesh Middle 2013 Rancho Palos Verdes CA Univ. of Southern Cal Southern Cal
3 Christian Blough Setter 2013 Ontario NY Ohio State Univ. Western Emp.
5 Kyle Dagostino Libero 2014 Tampa FL Tampa Bay Invaders Florida
6 Soren Dion-Kindem Setter 2017 Agoura Hills CA Pepperdine Univ. Southern Cal
7 Evan Enriques Libero 2014 Pahala HI Ka Ulukoa VBC Aloha
8 Storm Faagata Leftside 2014 Long Beach CA SCVC Southern Cal
9 Kupono Fey Outside 2013 Honolulu HI Univ. of Hawaii Aloha
12 Jeff Jendryk Middle 2014 Wheaton IL Sports Perf. VC Great Lakes
13 George Perinar Rightside 2014 Channahon IL Ultimate VBC Great Lakes
14 Ben Plaisted Rightside 2014 Wauwatosa WI Milwaukee VC Badger
15 Kevin Rakestraw Middle 2013 Newport Beach CA Stanford Univ. Southern Cal
16 Brenden Sander Leftside 2014 Huntington Beach CA Balboa Bay VC Southern Cal

Head Coach: Dan Friend
Team Leader: Tom Tait
Assistant Coach: Jay Hosack
Assistant Coach: Sam Shweisky
Team Doctor: Jodi Pelegrin
Statistician: Tyler Adams

Schedule and Results for the 2014 NORCECA Men’s U21 Continental Championship
(All times CT)
July 29
2 p.m. USA v Nicaragua (Pool C)
4 p.m. Puerto Rico v St. Lucia (Pool B)
6 p.m. Mexico v Cuba (Pool C)
8 p.m. Barbados v El Salvador (Pool A)

July 30
2 p.m. Mexico v Nicaragua (Pool C)
4 p.m. St. Lucia v Canada (Pool B)
6 p.m. Honduras v Barbados (Pool A)
8 p.m. USA v Cuba (Pool C)

July 31
2 p.m. Cuba v Nicaragua (Pool C)
4 p.m. Canada v Puerto Rico (Pool B)
6 p.m. USA v Mexico (Pool C)
8 p.m. El Salvador v Honduras (Pool A)

Aug. 1
3 p.m. Ninth-place match
5 p.m. Quarterfinal
7 p.m. Quarterfinal

Aug. 2
3 p.m. Seventh-place match
5 p.m. Semifinal
7 p.m. Semifinal

Aug. 3
3 p.m. Fifth-place match
5 p.m. Bronze medal match
7 p.m. Gold medal match