Sunday, 14 Jul 2024

Boys Youth Team Secures NORCECA Silver

The U.S. Boys Youth Team showcased their skill and dedication at the NORCECA U19 Championship in San José, Cost Rica, ultimately winning the silver medal. Despite a strong showing, they were defeated by Cuba in the final, with scores of 25-17, 25-17, and 25-20. Puerto Rico secured the bronze medal in a match against Guatemala.

The United States and Cuba’s impressive performance in the tournament earned them qualification for the 2019 FIVB World Championship. The U.S. team, led by Head Coach Brad Keller, put up a good fight, utilizing their full roster and frequently making substitutions to maintain a competitive edge. Key substitutions included Aidan Knipe and Scott Solan, who were replaced by Joe Karlous and Clarke Godbold, respectively.

Cuba proved to be a formidable opponent, defeating the U.S. 3-0 in pool play and once again asserting their dominance in the final. They held the lead in kills, blocks, and aces throughout the match. Despite the loss, the U.S. boys showcased their talent, with Godbold leading the team in scoring with seven points on six kills and one block. Alex Knight, an outside hitter, contributed six points with five kills and one block.

Cuba’s Alexei Ramirez, named the tournament’s Best Opposite, led his team with 12 points, while Jose Gutierrez, named the Best Spiker, finished with 11 points. Although U.S. players did not receive individual awards, Mason Briggs stood out as the second-best receiver with a remarkable 55.5 efficiency percentage. Among all setters, Knipe ranked second with an average of 3.83 running sets per set, while Karlous placed fifth with 3.22 running sets per set, helping the U.S. team secure first place in setting.

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Knight finished fourth in scoring overall, totaling 49 points with 37 kills, six blocks, and six aces. Akhil Tangutur and Solan tied for the ninth position among all scorers. Tangutur also excelled in kills with a 47.83 success percentage.

The U.S. team had the highest number of kills in the tournament but their success percentage fell short of Cuba’s. Nevertheless, they ranked first in receiving with a 50.34 success percentage.

The final rankings of the tournament were as follows: 1. Cuba, 2. United States, 3. Puerto Rico, 4. Guatemala, 5. Nicaragua, 6. Costa Rica, 7. Honduras.

The U.S. starters in the final match against Cuba were Alex Knight and Akhil Tangutur as outside hitters, Ethan Hill and Nathaniel Gates as middle blockers, Scott Solan as opposite, Aidan Knipe as setter, and Mason Briggs as libero. The substitutes included Clarke Godbold, Joe Karlous, Joe Deluzio, Ethan Smith, and James Hartley.

The NORCECA U19 Continental Championship Boys Youth National Team comprised of talented players from various locations across the United States. The coaching staff included Head Coach Brad Keller, Assistant Coaches Nick MacRae and Colin McMillan, Team Leader Gabby Lutjen, and Technical Coordinator Kevin Burch.

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  1. How did the U.S. Boys Youth Team perform in the NORCECA U19 Championship?

    • The U.S. Boys Youth Team secured the silver medal in the tournament.
  2. Who were the top performers for the U.S. team?

    • Clarke Godbold led the team in scoring with seven points, while Alex Knight contributed six points.
  3. Who were the standout players from Cuba?

    • Alexei Ramirez, named the Best Opposite, and Jose Gutierrez, named the Best Spiker, were key contributors for Cuba.
  4. Who were the coaches of the U.S. Boys Youth Team?

    • The team was led by Head Coach Brad Keller, with assistance from Assistant Coaches Nick MacRae and Colin McMillan.
  5. What were the final rankings of the tournament?

    • The final rankings were as follows: 1. Cuba, 2. United States, 3. Puerto Rico, 4. Guatemala, 5. Nicaragua, 6. Costa Rica, 7. Honduras.
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The U.S. Boys Youth Team’s journey in the NORCECA U19 Championship showcased their talent and determination. Despite falling short in the final, they secured the silver medal and qualified for the 2019 FIVB World Championship. Their performance was a testament to their hard work, guided by their skilled coaching staff. The team’s future looks promising as they continue to grow and excel in their volleyball careers.