New Lineup, Same Result for U.S. Men in Win

By B.J. Hoeptner Evans (bj.evans@usav.org) | May 27, 2018, 8:30 a.m. (ET)
U.S. Men's volleyball players Ben Patch, Taylor Averill and Taylor Sander block against China
From left, Ben Patch, Taylor Averill and Tayor Sander block against China on Sunday.
 

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 27, 2018) – The U.S. Men’s National Team used two new starters in its 25-20, 26-24, 25-18 Volleyball Nations League win over China on Sunday in Ningbo, China.

Outside hitter T.J. DeFalco and middle blocker Taylor Averill had some great moments for the U.S. Men, who finished the first weekend of VNL pool play at 3-0.

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Outside hitter Taylor Sander, who played in China’s professional league during the winter of 2016-17, led all scorers with 14 kills and a match-high three aces.

“This was a very fun match,” Sander said. “They’re a good young team and we’re very happy with the win.”

DeFalco finished with 13 points, including a match-high four blocks. Averill scored eight points on four kills, two blocks and two aces. He put together long strings of serves in the second and third sets.

China, who signed Argentinian Raúl Lozano as head coach this season, has showed improvement and was coming off a 3-0 defeat of Argentina on Saturday. Lozano is China’s first-ever foreign head coach.

The U.S. Men’s tough serving kept the Chinese off balance. The U.S. led in aces (8-1), blocks (10-3) and kills (43-35). China scored 23 points off U.S. errors while committing 15.

China’s greatest threat to win a set came in the second when it came back from a 20-18 deficit to lead 23-21. Sander responded with two straight kills to tie the score. At 24-24, DeFalco got a block and Sander served an ace to win the set.

U.S. STARTERS VS CHINA
Outside hitters: Taylor Sander and T.J. DeFalco
Middle blockers: Max Holt and Taylor Averill
Opposite: Ben Patch
Setter: Kawika Shoji
Libero: Erik Shoji

U.S. SCORING VS CHINA
Kills: Sander 14, Patch 10, DeFalco 9, Holt 6, Averill 4
Blocks: DeFalco 4, Averill 2, Patch 2, Holt 2
Aces: Sander 3, Patch 2, Averill 2

2018 FIVB Volleyball Nations League

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

3. Taylor Sander (OH, 6-4, Huntington Beach, Calif., BYU)
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)
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)
23. Jonah Seif (S, 6-6, Thousand Oaks, Calif., UC Santa Barbara)
26. Kyle Ensing (Opp, 6-7, Valencia, Calif., Long Beach State)

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 at 8:15 a.m.: Japan vs USA
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

-17: Serbia, Poland, Iran – TICKETS in Hoffman Estates, Ill.
June 22-24: Italy, Russia, France in Italy