Subs Step in for U.S. Men; Lead Comeback vs. Japan

By B.J. Hoeptner Evans (bj.evans@usav.org) | June 01, 2018, 2:15 p.m. (ET)
The U.S. Men's National Team slaps hands before the match
The U.S. Men slap hands and gear up before the match.
 

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 1, 2018) – Down 2-0 to Japan, the U.S. Men’s National Team brought in Ben Patch, Kawika Shoji, Thomas Jaeschke and Taylor Averill to right the ship and went on to win, 23-25, 13-25, 25-18, 25-20, 15-10 on Friday in Goiânia, Brazil.

The U.S. Men improve to 4-0 in the FIVB Volleyball Nations League while Japan falls to 2-2. The United States will play Korea on Saturday at 7:10 a.m. PT. The FIVB has chosen FloVolleyball.tv to live stream the matches.

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Patch at opposite finished with 14 kills and one block. He entered the match in the second set for Matt Anderson and helped spark the comeback.

“That was a really important win for us,” Patch said. “I think it shows each and every one of us on our team and our coaching staff that it’s going to take a team effort to win a game.

“We executed well in the third, fourth and fifth sets. That’s huge for us going forward.”

The U.S. Men, who have not lost a match to Japan since 1993, led Japan in kills (52-50), blocks (13-4) and aces (6-1).

Outside hitter Aaron Russell, who was starting his first 2018 VNL match for the U.S. Men after a long season in Italy, finished with 11 kills, two blocks and one ace.

U.S. Head Coach John Speraw started the match with Anderson at opposite, Micah Christenson at setter, T.J. DeFalco and Russell at outside hitter, David Smith and Jeff Jendryk at middle blocker and Erik Shoji at libero.

The U.S. Men struggled with 25 errors in the first two sets while Japan was attacking and digging well with only 13 errors.

Speraw started the fourth set with Kawika Shoji at setter, Patch at opposite, Russell and Thomas Jaeschke at the outsides, Jendryk and Taylor Averill in the middle and Erik Shoji at libero and turned the tide.

Jendryk finished the match with six blocks and two kills. Jaeschke and Kawika Shoji each finished with two aces. Jaeschke's seven kills and receiving also helped the U.S. Men in the win.

Averill had five kills, two blocks and one ace and brought consistent serving to the table.

It was the second VNL match that has seen the U.S. Men come back from 2-0. They did the same in their first match against Argentina.

U.S. STARTERS VS JAPAN
Outside Hitter: Aaron Russell and T.J. DeFalco (sub. Thomas Jaeschke)
Middle Blocker: David Smith and Jeff Jendryk (sub. Taylor Averill)
Opposite: Matt Anderson (sub. Ben Patch)
Setter: Micah Christenson (sub. Kawika Shoji)
Libero: Erik Shoji

U.S. SCORING VS JAPAN
Kills: Patch 14, Russell 11, Jaeschke 7, Anderson 5, Averill 5, DeFalco 4, Smith 4, Jendryk 2
Blocks: Jendryk 6, Averill 2, Russell 2, K Shoji 1, Smith 1, Patch 1
Aces: K Shoji 2, Jaeschke 2, Russell 1, Averill 1

2018 FIVB Volleyball Nations League

U.S. Men’s 14-Man Travel Roster for China

1. Matt Anderson (Opp, 6-9, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
2. Aaron Russell (OH, 6-9, Ellicott City, Md., Penn State)
4. Jeff Jendryk (MB, 6-10, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola of Chicago)
7. Kawika Shoji (S, 6-3, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford)
8. T.J. DeFalco (OH, 6-5, Huntington Beach, Calif., Long Beach State)
11. Micah Christenson (S, 6-6, Honolulu, Hawaii, Southern California)
12. Max Holt (MB, 6-10, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State)
13. Ben Patch (Opp, 6-8, Provo, Utah, BYU)
17. Thomas Jaeschke (OH, 6-6, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola)
18. Jake Langlois (OH, 6-10, San Jose, Calif., BYU)
19. Taylor Averill (MB, 6-7, San Jose, Calif., Hawaii)
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: Andrea Becker
Assistant Coaches: Rob Neilson and Brian Thornton
Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock
Team Doctor: William Stetson 

Schedule and Results (all times PT)
At Ningbo, China

May 25: USA def Argentina, 25-27, 24-26, 26-24, 25-21, 15-10
May 26: USA def Bulgaria vs USA, 25-19, 22-25, 25-19, 25-20 
May 27: USA def China, 25-20, 26-24, 25-18

At Goiânia, Brazil
June 1: USA def Japan, 23-25, 13-25, 25-18, 25-20, 15-10
June 2 at 7:10 a.m.: Korea vs USA
June 3 at 8:40 a.m.: Brazil vs USA

At Ottawa, Canada
June 8 at 1:40 p.m.: Germany vs USA
June 9 at 1:10 p.m.: USA vs Australia
June 10 at 1:10 p.m.: Canada vs USA

At Hoffman Estates, Ill., USA - GET TICKETS
June 15 at 5:30 p.m.: USA  vs. Serbia
June 16 at 5:30 p.m.: USA vs. Poland
June 17 at 2:30 p.m.: USA vs. Iran

At Modena, Italy
June 22 at 8:30 a.m.: USA vs France
June 23 at 8:30 a.m.: USA vs Russia
June 24 at 11:30 a.m.: Italy vs USA

Final Round (must qualify): July 1-4 in Lille, France