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Serbia Takes 3-1 Win over U.S. Men in London

July 20, 2011, 10:30 p.m. (ET)

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

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 20, 2011) –  The U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team fell to Serbia on Wednesday, 16-25, 25-17, 25-16, 26-24 in its first match of the London Volleyball International Invitational at Earls Court in Great Britain.

The U.S. Men will play Egypt in their second match on Thursday. The tournament is a test event for the 2012 Olympic Games, where the volleyball tournament will also be held at Earls Court.

U.S. opposite Evan Patak (Pleasanton, Calif.) led all scorers with 22 points on a match-high 18 kills, two blocks and a team-high two aces. Outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.) added 13 points on 11 kills, one block and one ace.

Outside hitter Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.) added 11 points on 10 kills and one block.

Milos Nikic led Serbia with 19 points on 17 kills, one block and one ace. Nikola Kovacevic and Sasa Starovic each added 16 points.

The U.S. never trailed in the first set, but fell behind early in the second and could not catch up. In the third set it came back from an 8-5 deficit at the first technical timeout (TTO) and took a 10-9 lead. However Serbia quashed that with a run of point to regain the lead. In the fourth set, the U.S. Men led 16-12 at the second TTO and led 21-19 before Serbia came back to win the set and the match.

The United States won the serving battle with five aces while Serbia had four. However, Serbia finished with 60 kills on a 0.452 hitting efficiency and a 52.2 kill percent. The U.S. scored on 49 kills and had a 0.377 hitting efficiency and a 43.0 kill percent. Serbia also led in blocks, 11-6.

Among other U.S. scorers, middle blocker Russell Holmes (Fountain Valley, Calif.) had eight points on six kills and two blocks. Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) added four points on three kills and one ace. Setter Brian Thornton (San Clemente, Calif.) finished with one point on an ace and outside hitter Jayson Jablonsky (Yorba Linda, Calif.) had one point on a kill.

U.S. Men’s Head Coach Alan Knipe (Huntington Beach, Calif.) started Anderson and Lotman at outside hitter, Holmes and Holt at middle blocker, Patak at opposite, Thornton at setter and Riley Salmon (League City, Texas) at libero.

Jablonsky, middle blocker David Smith (Saugus, Calif.) and setter Kevin Hansen (Newport Beach, Calif.) all played as substitutes.

London Volleyball International Invitational
July 20-24 at Earls Court in Great Britain

U.S. Men’s National Team Roster

No. Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
1. Matt Anderson (OH, 6-10, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State)
3. Evan Patak (Opp, 6-8, Pleasanton, Calif., UC Santa Barbara)
4. David Smith (MB, 6-7, Saugus, Calif., UC Irvine)
6. Paul Lotman (OH, 6-7, Lakewood, Calif., Long Beach State)
9. Murphy Troy (Opp, 6-8, St. Louis, Mo., USC)
10. Riley Salmon (L, 6-6, League City, Texas, Pierce College)
12. Russell Holmes (MB, 6-8, Fountain Valley, Calif., BYU)
13. Brian Thornton (S, 6-3, San Clemente, Calif., UC Irvine)
14. Kevin Hansen (S, 6-5, Newport Beach, Calif., Stanford)
17. Max Holt (MB, 6-9, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State)
18. Jayson Jablonsky (OH, 6-5, Yorba Linda, Calif., UC Irvine)
19. Robert Tarr (OH, 6-6, Cape Canaveral, Fla., Long Beach State)

Head Coach: Alan Knipe (Huntington Beach, Calif.)
Team Manager: Bill Neville
Assistant Coach:
Gary Sato (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Therapist/Trainer: Mike Sealy
Technical Coordinator: Chris Jackson (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Medical Support: Aaron Brock (Storm Lake, Iowa)

Tournament Schedule and Results (all times PT)

July 20
Brazil def. Egypt, 25-22, 25-23, 25-16
Great Britain def. Mexico, 25-15, 25-20, 21-25, 25-23
Serbia def. USA, 16-25, 25-17, 25-16, 26-24

July 21
7 a.m. USA vs. Egypt
9 a.m. Mexico vs. Brazil
11 a.m. Great Britain vs. Serbia

July 22
7 a.m. Egypt vs. Serbia
9 a.m. Great Britain vs. Brazil
11 a.m. USA vs. Mexico

July 23
7 a.m. Brazil vs. Serbia
9 a.m. Egypt vs. Mexico
11 a.m. USA vs. Great Britain

July 24
7 a.m. Mexico vs. Serbia
9 a.m. Egypt vs. Great Britain
11 a.m. USA vs. Brazil