Despite Win, U.S. Men Will Play in Quarterfinals

By B.J. Hoeptner Evans (bj.evans@usav.org) | Sept. 28, 2017, 11 p.m. (ET)

Micah Christenson sets

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, September 28, 2017 – The U.S. Men’s National Team won a slugfest against the Dominican Republic, 25-17, 25-21, 25-10 on Thursday at the NORCECA Men’s Continental Championship at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.

The victory wasn’t enough to get the United States into the semifinals. Even though the U.S. Men won their pool, they had the lowest point differential of any of the three pool winners. The Americans will play Costa Rica in the quarterfinals on Friday at 7 p.m. Dominican Republic (1-1), which finished pool play in second place, will play Trinidad & Tobago.

OFFICIAL STATISTICS | LIVE STREAM

The winner of the match between the United States and Costa Rica will play Canada in the semifinals.

The U.S. led Dominican Republic in spikes (33-21), blocks (12-4) and aces (10-1).

U.S. outside hitter Thomas Jaeschke led all scorers with 14 points a match-high 10 spikes and four blocks. Outside hitter Taylor Sander added 12 points on seven spikes and a match-high five aces.

Middle blocker Mitch Stahl made his first start with the senior U.S. Men’s Team and scored 10 points on five kills, four blocks and one ace.

“He had a really nice first start for us,” U.S. Head Coach John Speraw said. “He blocked some balls and ran some good routes offensively.”

Wilfrido Hernandez led the Dominican Republic with seven points on six spikes and one block.

After losing the first set, the Dominican Republic increased the power on their serves in the second set and kept the score close. With the U.S. leading 23-21, middle blocker Max Holt tipped an overpass for set point. Middle blocker Mitch Stahl spiked an overpass of Holt’s serve for the final point.

“That second set, they came out and they just started bombing,” Holt said. “And it worked for them. They made us uncomfortable.

“Coming out in that third set, we did a good job of not freaking out.”

U.S. Starters vs. Dominican Republic
Outside hitters: Taylor Sander and Thomas Jaeschke
Middle blockers: Max Holt and Mitch Stahl
Opposite: Matt Anderson
Setter: Micah Christenson
Libero: Erik Shoji

U.S. Statistivs vs Dominican Republic
Kills: Jaeschke 10, Sander 7, Anderson 6, Stahl 5, Holt 4,
Blocks: Stahl 4, Jaeschke 4, Holt 2, Christenson 1, Anderson 1
Aces:  Sander 5, Holt 4, Stahl 1
Digs: E Shoji 5, Jaeschke 5, Anderson 4, Holt 3, Stahl 2, Sander 2, Christenson 2, K Shoji 1

U.S. Men’s Roster

1. Matt Anderson (Opp, 6-9, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
2. Aaron Russell (OH, 6-9, Ellicott City, Md., Penn State)
3. Taylor Sander (OH, 6-4, Huntington Beach, Calif., BYU)
4. Mitch Stahl (MB, 6-8, Chambersburg, Pa., UCLA)
7. Kawika Shoji (S, 6-3, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford)
10. Thomas Jaeschke (OH, 6-6, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola of Chicago)
11. Micah Christenson (S, 6-6, Honolulu, Southern California)
13. Dan McDonnell (MB, 6-6. Glendale, Ariz., UC Irvine)
14. Ben Patch (Opp, 6-8, Provo, Utah, BYU)
15. Carson Clark (Opp, 6-6, Santa Barbara, Calif., UC Irvine)
17. Max Holt (MB, 6-10, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State)
20C. David Smith (MB, 6-7, Saugus, Calif., UC Irvine
21. Dustin Watten (L, 6-0, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State)
22. Erik Shoji (L, 6-0, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford)

Head Coach: John Speraw
Team Manager Nate Ngo
Assistant Coaches: Rob Neilson and Brian Thornton
Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock
Team Doctor: Andrew Gregory
Consultant Coach: Greg Walker
Strength Coach: Tim Pelot

NORCECA Championship Schedule and Results
(All times MDT) 
Sept. 26       Gym           Match
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   Trinidad & Tobago def St. Lucia, 25-15, 25-16, 25-17
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Costa Rica def Martinique, 25-19, 25-16, 23-25, 25-21
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   USA def Guatemala, 25-12, 25-14, 25-10
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Mexico def St. Vincent, 25-7, 25-16, 25-10
         
Sept. 27        
5 p.m.    SportsCenter 1   Canada def St. Lucia, 25-9, 25-13, 25-8
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Costa Rica def St. Vincent, 25-10, 25-19, 25-21
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   Dominican Republic def Guatemala, 25-16, 25-20, 25-18
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Mexico def Martinique, 25-11, 25-15, 25-12
         
Sept. 28        
5 p.m.    SportsCenter 1   Canada def Trinidad & Tobago, 25-21, 25-12, 25-10
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Martinique def St. Vincent, 25-10, 25-14, 25-20
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   USA def Dominican Republic, 25-17, 25-21, 25-10
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Mexico def Costa Rica, 25-19, 25-16, 25-10
         
Sept. 29        
5 p.m.    SportsCenter 1   QF: Trinidad & Tobago vs Dominican Republic
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Classification 7-10: Martinique vs St. Vincent
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   QF: USA vs Costa Rica
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Classification 7-10: Guatemala vs St. Lucia
         
Sept. 30        
3 p.m.    SportsCenter 1   Classification 5-8
3 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Classification 9-10
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   Semi; Mexico vs Trinidad & Tobago or Dominican Republic
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Classification 5-8
7 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   Semi: Canada vs USA or Costa Rica
         
Oct. 1        
2 p.m.    SportsCenter 2   Classification 7-8
3 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   Bronze Medal Match
4 p.m.   SportsCenter 2   Classification 5-6
5 p.m.   SportsCenter 1   Gold Medal Match