HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. (June 19, 2019) – Olympians Matt Anderson and Thomas Jaeschke will make their 2019 Volleyball Nations League debuts this June 21-23 at the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Ill., as the U.S. Men’s National Team plays Japan, Canada and China.
The U.S. Men (5-4), ranked No. 2 in the world, are in sixth place in the VNL rankings and are on a four-match winning streak. The United States is hosting the VNL Finals on July 10-14 in Chicago and therefore will qualify automatically.
Canada (4-5) is in 10th place in the VNL standings. Japan (4-5) is 11th and China (1-8) is in 16th.
The matches will be shown on FloVolleyball.tv. Sunday’s match against China is scheduled to be shown live on NBCSN at 5:30 p.m. ET.
Anderson, a two-time Olympian and who was named Best Opposite at the 2018 VNL Finals, played late into May with his Russian professional team Zenit Kazan. He rejoined the team last weekend in Cannes, France, but was not on the roster.
Returning to Hoffman Estates is bittersweet for Jaeschke, who grew up in nearby Wheaton, Ill., and played for Loyola of Chicago. Last year he tore his ACL while playing at the Sears Centre and this weekend’s matches are his first since then.
”It’s mixed feelings for me,” Jaeschke said. “I’m excited to be back. The first thing I did when I came out here is go slap the spot where I landed (and suffered the injury). If we had something we needed to clear up, I hope we cleared it up.”
Jaeschke said his knee is feeling strong but he needs to get the rest of his body in playing shape.
“I’ve been out for a year and volleyball is a really high-impact, high velocity sport. It’s the rest of my body catching up to play.”
Middle blocker Jeff Jendryk, who also great up in Wheaton and played at Loyola, is also on the roster.
With Jaeschke on the roster along with outside hitters Taylor Sander, T.J. DeFalco and Garrett Muagututia, fans may see Micah Ma’a make his first VNL start at setter over the weekend. Ma’a was pressed into service as an outside hitter while the team competed in Europe.
U.S. Men’s Roster for Hoffman Estates, Ill.
1 Matt Anderson (Opp, 6-9, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
3C Taylor Sander (OH, 6-4, Huntington Beach, Calif., BYU)
4 Jeff Jendryk (MB, 6-10, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola of Chicago)
8 T.J. DeFalco (OH, 6-5, Huntington Beach, Calif., Long Beach State)
11 Micah Christenson (S, 6-6, Honolulu, Southern California)
12 Max Holt (MB, 6-10, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State)
13 Ben Patch (Opp, 6-8, Provo, Utah, BYU)
14 Micah Ma'a (S, 6-3, Kaneohe, Hawaii, UCLA)
17 Thomas Jaeschke (OH, 6-6, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola)
18 Garrett Muagututia (OH, 6-5, Oceanside, Calif., UCLA)
19 Taylor Averill (MB, 6-7, San Jose, Calif., Hawaii)
20 David Smith (MB, 6-7, Saugus, Calif., UC Irvine)
22 Erik Shoji (L, 6-0, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford)
23 Larry Tuileta Jr. (L, 6-2, Honolulu, Hawaii, Hawaii)
Head Coach: John Speraw
Assistant Coaches: Rob Neilson and Brian Thornton
Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock
Team Leader: Dan Friend
Doctor: Mark Hutchinson
2019 FIVB Volleyball Nations League
U.S. Men’s Schedule (all times PT)
Brazil def USA, 25-22, 25-22, 25-23
Poland def USA, 17-25, 34-32, 26-28, 25-23, 15-9
USA def Australia, 19-25, 27-25, 25-16, 25-16
Italy def USA, 25-23, 13-25, 25-20, 25-23
Russia def Italy, 25-22, 25-19, 25-15
USA def Portugal, 25-20, 22-25, 25-22, 25-17
USA def Argentina, 25-22, 25-19, 21-25, 25-21
USA def Germany, 25-22, 21-25, 25-19, 25-20
USA def France, 3-25, 25-22, 28-26, 27-25
Hoffman Estates, Illinois, USA
June 21 at 6 p.m.: USA v Japan
June 22 at 5:30 p.m.: USA v Canada
June 23 at 2:30 p.m.: USA v China
June 28 at 10:40 a.m.: USA v Bulgaria
June 29 at 7 a.m.: USA v Serbia
June 30 at 7 a.m.: USA v Iran