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U.S. Men Sweep Venezuela at Pan Am Cup

By Bill Kauffman | July 09, 2012, 7:30 p.m. (ET)

Bill Kauffman
USA Volleyball Communications
Phone: 719-228-6800
Email: bill.kauffman@usav.org
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 9, 2012) – The U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team used a definitive serving advantage to defeat Venezuela 25-17, 25-19, 25-12 on Monday to open the Men’s Pan American Cup in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

The U.S. continues Pool B action on Tuesday against Mexico at noon PT before concluding the preliminary round on Wednesday against Brazil at 2 p.m. PT.

The U.S. was led by Daniel McDonnell (Glendale, Ariz.) and Taylor Sander (Huntington Beach, Calif.), who each pocketed 12 points in the victory over Venezuela. McDonnell reached his dozen points with five kills on eight errorless attacks, two blocks and five aces. Sander recorded nine kills on 13 attacks, two aces and a block. Tony Ciarelli (Huntington Beach, Calif.) charted six kills on 10 attacks, three aces and a block for 10 points. Murphy Troy (St. Louis, Mo.) added eight points with four aces, three kills and a block. Carson Clark (Santa Barbara, Calif.) produced six points all on kills. Matt Rawson (Los Angeles) and Garrett Muagututia (Oceanside, Calif.) tallied three points each. Dylan Davis (Corona Del Mar, Calif.), Jordan DeFault (Lakewood, Calif.) and Kawika Shoji (Honolulu) rounded out the scoring with a point each.

As the setter, Shoji directed the U.S. offense to a 61.3 kill percent and .548 hitting efficiency with only four errors on 62 attempts. Dustin Watten (Long Beach, Calif.) totaled a team-high five digs along with five excellent receptions on 13 attempts. Sander charted seven excellent receptions on 14 attempts.

"We have worked hard to achieve this kind of victory," U.S. Men's Volleyball Coach Shawn Patchell said. "Our start was not the best and I was concerned but we improved a lot and after the first set our serves were accurate and a key to the victory. This is a good group of young players who are gaining confidence and can improve their game even more."

The U.S. started Shoji at setter, Clark at opposite, Davis and McDonnell at middle blocker, and Sander and Ciarelli at outside hitter. Watten was the designated libero. Murphy started the second and third sets for Clark. Rawson subbed in the second set and started the third set. Muagututia started the third set. Ryan Ammierman (Parker, Colo.) was a sub in the second and third sets, while DuFault was a sub in the third set.

The U.S. serve routinely took Venezuela out of its game with a 14-2 ace advantage. Team USA held a 38-26 margin in kills, in addition to a slim 5-3 advantage in blocks and 18-10 dig advantage.

“Venezuelans played very well at the beginning of the match, but our good service made the difference,” Shoji said.

Venezuela was led by Kervin Pinerua’s 11 points, and no other player scored more than six points.

U.S. Men’s Pan American Cup Team
No. Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
1 - Dylan Davis (MB, 6-9, Corona Del Mar, Calif., UC Santa Barbara)
2 - Matt Rawson (MB, 6-7, Los Angeles, Hawaii)
4 - Carson Clark (Opp, 6-5, Santa Barbara, Calif., UC Irvine)
5 - Garrett Muagututia (OH, 6-5, Oceanside, Calif., UCLA)
6 - Murphy Troy (Opp, 6-8, St. Louis, Mo., USC)
7 - Jordan Dufault (OH, 6-4, Lakewood, Calif., UC Irvine)
9 - Daniel McDonnell (MB, 6-6, Glendale, Ariz., UC Irvine)
12 - Tony Ciarelli (OH, 6-6, Huntington Beach, Calif., USC)
13 - Ryan Ammerman (S, 6-8, Parker, Colo., UC Irvine)
14 - Dustin Watten (L, 6-0, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State)
22 - Taylor Sander (OH, 6-4, Huntington Beach, Calif., BYU)
24 - Kawika Shoji (S, 6-3, Honolulu, Stanford)

Head Coach: Shawn Patchell
Assistant Coach: Tim Johnson
Team Manager: Nicholas MacRae
Athletic Trainer: Chad Eichten

2012 Men’s Pan American Cup Schedule

Pool A: Argentina, Canada, Dominican Republic, Trinidad & Tobago
Pool B: Brazil, Mexico, United States, Venezuela

Pool A Schedule
July 9: Argentina def. Canada 25-20, 17-25, 23-25, 25-19, 16-14
July 9: Dominican Republic vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 7 p.m.
July 10: Argentina vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 1 p.m.
July 10: Dominican Republic vs. Canada
July 11: Canada vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 3 p.m.
July 11: Dominican Republic vs. Argentina, 7 p.m.

Pool B Schedule
July 9: Brazil def. Mexico 25-15, 25-15, 25-16
July 9: United States def. Venezuela 25-17, 25-19, 25-12
July 10: United States vs. Mexico, 3 p.m. (noon PT)
July 10: Brazil vs. Venezuela, 5 p.m.
July 11: Venezuela vs. Mexico, 1 p.m.
July 11: United States vs. Brazil, 5 p.m. (2 p.m. PT)

July 12: 2B vs. 3A, 5 p.m. (Match 13)
July 12: 2A vs. 3B, 7 p.m. (Match 14)

July 13: 4A vs. Loser M13/14, 1 p.m. (Match 15)
July 13: 4B vs. Loser M13/14, 3 p.m. (Match 16)
July 13: 1A vs. Winner M13/14, 5 p.m. (Match 17)
July 13: 1B vs. Winner M13/14, 7 p.m. (Match 18)

July 14: M15 loser vs. M16 loser, 1 p.m. (Classification 7-8)
July 14: M15 winner vs. M16 winner, 3 p.m. (Classification 5-6)
July 14: M17 loser vs. M18 loser, 5 p.m. (bronze-medal match)
July 14: M17 winner vs. M18 winner, 8 p.m. (gold-medal match)