U.S. Rally Runs out of Steam against Argentina

By B.J. Hoeptner Evans (bj.evans@usav.org) | Sept. 30, 2019, 11:30 p.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Sept. 30, 2019) – When the U.S. Men won the 2015 FIVB World Cup, they secured their victory by beating Argentina in the final match.

Argentina got its revenge in the first match of the 2019 World Cup, defeating the U.S. 25-21, 25-20, 19-25, 21-25, 15-12 on Monday in Fukuoka, Japan.

The U.S. will try to come back against Italy on Tuesday at 10 p.m. PT. FloVolleyball.tv is showing all World Cup matches.

After fighting back to overcome an 0-2 deficit, the U.S. Men reached the fifth-set tiebreaker. With the score tied 8-8, Argentina’s Ezequiel Palacios connected on a kill and the U.S. followed with a hitting error. Argentina’s Matias Sanchez served an ace and Argentina went on to the victory.

Argentina led in kills (70-59) and aces (7-5). The teams tied in blocks (7-7). The U.S. scored 32 points on Argentina errors while committing 21. The U.S. kill efficiency was 53.6. Argentina’s was 54.7.

Outside hitter Aaron Russell led the U.S. Men with 18 points on 17 kills and one ace. Opposite Matt Anderson scored 15 on 12 kills and three aces. Middle blocker Jeff Jendryk totaled 15 points on 12 kills and three blocks.

Outside hitter Thomas Jaeschke, who entered the match in the second set for Garrett Muagututia, totaled 12 points on nine kills, two blocks and one ace.

Middle blocker Max Holt had six points. Muagututia had three and setter Micah Chrstenson had two.

Early on, Argentina’s quick and varied offense and tough serving stymied the U.S. Men, who had no aces, one block and few digs in the first two sets.

U.S. Head Coach John Speraw brought in setter Josh Tuaniga for starter Christenson to finish the second set. The break helped as Christenson returned in the third set and the U.S. Men took a 13-8 lead that they rode to the win.

Argentina led the fourth set 10-6 and 19-17 before the U.S. scored on Argentina’s service error and an ace by Matt Anderson to tie the score at 19-19. At 20-20, the U.S. got its first led of the set on Argentina’s attack error and an ace by Jaeschke. Holt put the U.S. ahead 23-21 with a kill off Christenson’s one-handed set and Jendryk gave the U.S. set point with a block and Argentina’s hitting error sealed the set win.

U.S. STARTERS VS ARGENTINA
Outside hitters: Aaron Russell and Garrett Muagututia
Middle blockers: Max Holt and Jeff Jendryk
Opposite: Matt Anderson
Setter: Micah Christenson
Libero: Erik Shoji
Substitutes: Thomas Jaeschke (OH), Josh Tuaniga (S), Michael Saeta (SS)

U.S. STATISTICS VS ARGENTINA
Kills: Russell 17, Anderson 12, Jendryk 12, Jaeschke 9, Holt 5, Muagututia 3, Christenson 1
Blocks: Jendryk 3, Jaeschke 2, Holt 1, Christenson 1
Aces: Anderson 3, Russell 1, Jaeschke 1

U.S. ROSTER VS ARGENTINA

No. Name (Pos, Height, Hometown, College)
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)
Mitch Stahl (MB, 6-8, Chambersburg, Pa., UCLA)
T.J. DeFalco (OH, 6-5, Huntington Beach, Calif., Long Beach State)
Michael Saeta (SS, 6-5, South Pasadena, Calif., UC Irvine)
11 C  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)
16  Josh Tuaniga (S, 6-3, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State)
17  Thomas Jaeschke (OH, 6-6, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola)
18  Garrett Muagututia (OH, 6-5, Oceanside, Calif., UCLA)
22  Erik Shoji (L, 6-0, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford)

Head Coach: John Speraw
Assistant Coaches: Rob Neilson and Brian Thornton
Consultant Coach: Mike Wall
Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Athletic Trainer: Aaron Brock
Doctor: Andrew Gregory
Sports Psychologist: Bernard Whitney
Trainer: Tim Pelot

U.S. Schedule for the 2019 World Cup
(All times PT)

Sept. 30: Argentina def USA vs Argentina, 25-21, 25-20, 19-25, 21-25, 15-12
Oct. 1 at 11 p.m. Italy vs USA
Oct. 3 at 11 p.m. USA vs Poland
Oct. 5 at 3:20 a.m. Japan vs USA
Oct. 5 at 11 p.m. USA vs Tunisia
Oct. 9 at 2 a.m. USA vs Iran
Oct. 10 at 2 a.m. USA vs Brazil
Oct. 11 at 2 a.m. USA vs Canada
Oct. 12 at 10 p.m. USA vs Australia
Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. USA vs Russia
Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. USA vs Egypt