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US Men Fall to France in World League Opener

May 18, 2012, 12 a.m. (ET)

B.J. Hoeptner Evans
Manager, Communications
Phone: (719) 228-6800
E-Mail: bj.evans@usav.org

Unofficial DataVolley Statistics * Official Match Statistics

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 18, 2012) – Perhaps showing the strain of its rigorous early season schedule, the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team fell to France, 17-25, 25-20, 26-24, 25-17 on Friday in their opening pool play match of the 2012 FIVB World League in Florence, Italy.

The U.S. Men (0-1), ranked No. 6 in the world by the FIVB, will try to come back on Saturday (8 a.m. PT) against Korea while France (1-0), ranked No. 21 in the world, will play host Italy. The U.S. will play Italy on Sunday (11:30 a.m. PT).

The U.S. Men are coming off the six-day, eight-team NORCECA Men’s Continental Olympic Qualification Tournament, which they won with a 5-0 record while dropping only one set.

"We started the game well, but after the first set we fell asleep," U.S. Men's Team Captain Clay Stanley (Honolulu, Hawaii) said in an FIVB press release.

After a strong first set on Friday, the U.S. Men saw France turn up its blocking pressure while Team USA struggled with its serve. France led 8-1 in aces while the U.S. Men had 17 service errors as compared to 14 for France. France led in digs 52-37 and in receptions 49-42.

"We couldn’t follow our technical plan, but we made a lot of mistakes in reception," U.S. Head Coach Alan Knipe (Huntington Beach, Calif.) said in an FIVB release. “Definitely we weren’t focused on the match."

France out-attacked the U.S. Men, 50-46 while the United States led in blocks 15-10. However five of the U.S. blocks came in the first set.

Opposite Clay Stanley (Honolulu, Hawaii) led the United States with 17 points on 12 kills (52.2 kill percent, .435 hitting efficiency) and a team-high five blocks. Outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) added 14 points on a team-high 13 attacks (46.4 kill percent, .321 hitting efficiency) and one ace. Middle blocker David Lee (Alpine, Calif.) totaled 10 points on seven attacks (63.6 kill percent, .455 hitting efficiency) and three blocks.

Marien Mareau and Earvin Ngapeth each scored 16 points for France. Kevin Le Roux added 13.

Outside hitter Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.) scored nine points on seven kills and two blocks. Middle blocker Russell Holmes (Fountain Valley, Calif.) amassed six points on three attacks and three blocks.

Setter Donald Suxho (Korce, Albania) totaled three points on one kill and two blocks. He also set the team to a 46.0 kill percent and a .320 hitting efficiency.

Outside hitters Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.) and Riley Salmon (League City, Texas) along with middle blocker Ryan Millar (Alpine, Utah) each scored one point with an attack.

U.S. Head Coach Alan Knipe (Huntington Beach, Calif.) started Anderson and Priddy at outside hitter, Holmes and Lee at middle blocker, Stanley at opposite and Suxho at setter. Rich Lambourne (Tustin, Calif.) is the designated libero for the tournament.

Lotman started the fourth set for Priddy and Millar started for Holmes. David McKienzie (Littleton, Colo.) and Salmon played as substitutes.

Anderson got the U.S. off to a good start in the first set, serving to a 3-0 lead with the U.S. scoring on a Priddy kill, Lee block and French hitting error. The U.S. led 8-6 at the first technical timeout (TTO). The teams traded points until The U.S. led 9-8 and France served into the net. A French hitting error followed by an Anderson kill put the U.S. ahead 12-8. The U.S. led 16-11 at the second TTO. With the U.S. ahead 17-12, Holmes scored with an attack, followed by two U.S. blocks to put Team USA up 20-12. The U.S. reached set point at 24-17 on France’s serving error and won the set on Frances net violation. The U.S. out-blocked France in the set 5-1 led by Stanley and Lee who each had two.

The U.S. Men continued the pressure at the net in the second set and took an 8-5 lead at the first TTO, including three more blocks. The U.S. was leading 15-12 when it served into the net. France scored three more straight points on a block, kill and ace to lead 16-15 at the second TTO. France extended the lead to 20-17. The U.S. scored on a Stanley block, but France scored the next four points on two blocks and two attacks off the block to reach set point at 24-18. The U.S. scored on a Priddy attack and Holmes blocks, but France called timeout and won the set on a U.S. service error.

The teams opened the third set tied at 5-5 when France scored twice to take a 7-5 lead. It led 8-6 at the first TTO. The U.S. Men pulled into an 8-8 tie on a Stanley kill and a block, but with the score tied 9-9, France got a quick kill and a block to take back the lead. France led 16-14 at the second TTO. Troubled by service errors, the U.S. Men struggled to catch up and took a timeout when France went ahead 21-18 on an ace. France led 23-20 when Anderson scored with an attack and France followed with a hitting error. France called timeout and the next U.S. serve went out of bounds to give France set point at 24-22. The U.S. fought it off with a Stanley attack and a block to tie the score at 24-24. But France used a tip and Moreau attack to win the set, 26-24.

France led 16-8 at the second TTO of the fourth set and increased the lead on an ace and kill, causing the U.S. to call timeout. France’s next serve went out of bounds and the U.S. scored again on an Anderson ace. However France came back with an attack. With France leading 21-11, its serve went out of bounds and the U.S. scored on a Salmon kill and Suxho block to cut the lead to 21-14. France called timeout and the next U.S. serve went into the net. France reached match point at 24-16 on a Ngapeth attack of the block. France’s next serve went into the net, but it won the match on a block.

To reach the FIVB World League web site, click here.

To reach the USA Volleyball World League web site, click here.

U.S. World League Roster for May 18 in Florence, Italy

1. Matt Anderson (OH, 6-10, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
4. David Lee (MB, 6-8, Alpine, Calif., Long Beach State)
5. Rich Lambourne (L, 6-3, Tustin, Calif., BYU)
6. Paul Lotman (OH, 6-7, Lakewood, Calif., Long Beach State)
7. Donald Suxho (S, 6-5, Korce, Albania, USC)
8. Reid Priddy (OH, 6-5, Richmond, Va., Loyola Marymount)
9. Ryan Millar (MB, 6-8, Alpine, Utah, BYU)
10. Riley Salmon (L, 6-6, League City, Texas, Pierce College)
11. Brian Thornton (S, 6-3, San Clemente, Calif., UC Irvine)
12. Russell Holmes (MB, 6-8, Fountain Valley, Calif., BYU)
13. Clay Stanley (OPP, 6-9, Honolulu, Hawai'i, Hawaii)
21. David McKienzie (Opp, 6-4, Littleton, Colo., Long Beach State)

Head Coach: Alan Knipe (Huntington Beach, Calif.)
Team Manager: Rob Browning (Newport Beach, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: Gary Sato (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: John Speraw (Irvine, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: Ron Larsen (Lafayette, Calif.)
Technical Coordinator: Chris Jackson (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Medical Support: Aaron Brock (Storm Lake, Iowa)

U.S. World League Schedule/Results
(All times PT unless noted)

In Florence, Italy
May 18: France def. USA, 17-25, 25-20, 26-24, 25-17
May 19 at 8 a.m. USA vs. Korea
May 20 at 11:30 a.m. USA vs. Italy

In Lyon, France
June 15 at 9:30 a.m. USA vs. Italy
June 16 at 8 a.m. USA vs. Korea
June 17 at 9 a.m. USA vs. France

In Gwangju, Korea
June 22 at 12:30 a.m. USA vs. Italy
June 23 at 12:30 a.m. USA vs. France
June 24 at 12:30 a.m. USA vs. Korea

In Dallas, Texas
June 29 at 7:30 p.m. CT USA vs. Korea
June 30 at 7:30 p.m. CT USA vs. France
July 1 at 7:30 p.m. CT USA vs. Italy