Saturday, 13 Jul 2024

Experienced U.S. Men’s Roster Ready to Compete for Another VNL Podium Finish

The U.S. Men’s National Team, currently ranked No. 3 globally, is eagerly preparing for the upcoming 2021 FIVB Volleyball Nations League (VNL) in Rimini, Italy, from May 28 to June 27. After being apart for a year, the team is back together and motivated to make their mark on the competition.

Head Coach John Speraw and his dedicated staff have carefully selected a roster of 19 players for the tournament. To ensure the health and safety of all participants, the event will take place in a secure “bubble” without any spectators. From the long list, 14 players will be chosen for each three-day segment of the preliminary round.

One of the team’s strengths going into the VNL is their extensive experience. With the 2021 Olympic Games approaching, the players are eager to showcase their skills and contribute to the team’s success. Additionally, the inclusion of new, talented faces promises to have a positive impact on the team’s VNL experience.

The U.S. Men’s National Team is proud to have eight Olympians from the 2019 VNL Final Round roster on their roster. These include Taylor Sander, Matt Anderson, David Smith, Max Holt, Micah Christenson, Kawika Shoji, Erik Shoji, and Thomas Jaeschke. Unfortunately, Aaron Russell, another member of the 2019 VNL Finals team, is currently recovering from hip surgery.

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Moreover, three more players from the 2019 VNL Final Round roster, Jeff Jendryk, Ben Patch, and Garrett Muagututia, have also made it to the 2021 long list. Additionally, six other players have competed in the 2019 VNL preliminary round and other tournaments, including Josh Tuaniga, T.J. Defalco, Brenden Sander, Mitch Stahl, Taylor Averill, and Dustin Watten.

Introducing a new face to the team, Jake Hanes, a former Ohio State men’s volleyball standout, brings his exceptional skills as an opposite player. Hanes has received numerous accolades during his college career, including All-MIVA First Team and AVCA All-America Honorable Mention honors in 2019.

The U.S. Men’s National Team has shown impressive performance in the previous VNL editions. They secured the silver medal in 2019 and the bronze medal in the inaugural year of 2018. Unfortunately, the 2020 edition was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In this year’s VNL, 16 men’s teams will compete against each other in three-day round-robin segments during the preliminary round, which will take place from May 28 to June 23. Unlike previous editions, only the top four teams will advance to the final round. The semifinals will be played on June 26, followed by the medal matches on June 27.

The VNL holds significant importance for the U.S. Men’s National Team this year. It is their only official international competition before the Tokyo Olympic Games, which begin on July 24. The team recognizes the value of every match they play together and aims to maximize their performance heading into the Olympics.

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To witness the U.S. Men’s National Team in action, fans can watch the VNL on the FIVB’s streaming service, Volleyball World TV.


U.S. Men’s National Team 19-Person Roster for FIVB Volleyball Nations League:

  1. Matt Anderson (OP, 6-10, West Seneca, N.Y., Penn State Univ.)
  2. Taylor Sander (OH, 6-4, Huntington Beach, Calif., Brigham Young Univ.)
  3. Jeff Jendryk (MB, 6-10, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola Univ. Chicago)
  4. Kyle Ensing (OP, 6-7, Valencia, Calif., Long Beach State Univ.)
  5. Mitch Stahl (MB, 6-8, Chambersburg, Pa., Univ. of California Los Angeles)
  6. Kawika Shoji (S, 6-3, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford Univ.)
  7. T.J. DeFalco (OH, 6-5, Huntington Beach, Calif., Long Beach State Univ.)
  8. Jake Hanes (OP, 6-10, Orland Park, Ill., Ohio State Univ.)
  9. Micah Christenson (S, 6-5, Honolulu, Hawaii, Univ. of Southern California)
  10. Max Holt (MB, 6-10, Cincinnati, Ohio, Penn State Univ.)
  11. Ben Patch (OP, 6-8, Layton, Utah, Brigham Young Univ.)
  12. Brenden Sander (OH, 6-4, Huntington Beach, Calif., Brigham Young Univ.)
  13. Josh Tuaniga (S, 6-3, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State Univ.)
  14. Thomas Jaeschke (OH, 6-6, Wheaton, Ill., Loyola Univ. Chicago)
  15. Garrett Muagututia (OH, 6-5, Oceanside, Calif., Univ. of California Los Angeles)
  16. Taylor Averill (MB, 6-7, San Jose, Calif., Univ. of Hawaii)
  17. David Smith (MB, 6-7, Saugus, Calif., Univ. of California Irvine)
  18. Dustin Watten (L, 6-0, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State Univ.)
  19. Erik Shoji (L, 6-0, Honolulu, Hawaii, Stanford Univ.)

Head Coach: John Speraw
Assistant Coaches: Brian Thornton and Matthew Fuerbringer
Athletic Trainers: Aaron Brock and Timothy Pelot
Team Manager and Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo


FAQs

Q: Which teams will the U.S. Men’s National Team compete against in the preliminary round of the 2021 FIVB Volleyball Nations League?

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The U.S. Men’s National Team will face several formidable opponents during the preliminary round of the 2021 FIVB Volleyball Nations League. Here is the schedule of their matches:

  • May 28: USA vs Canada
  • May 29: USA vs Brazil
  • May 30: USA vs Argentina
  • June 3: Russia vs USA
  • June 4: Poland vs USA
  • June 5: USA vs Australia
  • June 9: Iran vs USA
  • June 10: Germany vs USA
  • June 11: USA vs Serbia
  • June 15: Italy vs USA
  • June 16: USA vs France
  • June 17: Netherlands vs USA
  • June 21: Slovenia vs USA
  • June 22: Bulgaria vs USA
  • June 23: USA vs Japan

Q: Where can fans watch the FIVB Volleyball Nations League in the United States?

Fans in the United States can catch all the action from the FIVB Volleyball Nations League on the FIVB’s streaming service, Volleyball World TV.

Summary

The U.S. Men’s National Team, currently ranked No. 3 worldwide, is gearing up for the 2021 FIVB Volleyball Nations League (VNL) with an experienced and talented roster. After a year apart, the team is excited to reunite and compete in the secure “bubble” in Rimini, Italy. The roster consists of a mix of seasoned Olympians and promising new faces, all eager to make their mark on the competition. The team’s goal is to build on their success from previous VNL editions and secure a place on the podium once again. Fans can watch the matches on the FIVB’s streaming service, Volleyball World TV.