Saturday, 20 Jul 2024

MNT Update: Holt, Jaeschke Win Chinese League with Beijing

U.S. Men’s National Team players are making a significant impact on international club teams worldwide. In January 2023, Thomas Jaeschke and Max Holt, playing for Beijing, clinched the league title in China. Let’s dive into the details and explore the success of these talented athletes.

Beijing Triumphs in Chinese League

Beijing emerged victorious in the Chinese league after defeating Shanghai in a thrilling series. On January 4, Beijing secured a 3-1 victory (25-23, 16-25, 28-26, 26-24) over Shanghai. The following day, Beijing continued their dominant performance, winning 3-0 (25-12, 25-18, 25-21). This remarkable achievement was made possible through the outstanding performances of outside hitter Thomas Jaeschke and middle blocker Max Holt.

In the final, Jaeschke emerged as the leading scorer for his team, contributing an impressive 16 points. Holt, on the other hand, showcased his versatility by earning 15 points, including four aces. Their exceptional skills and contributions were instrumental in Beijing’s triumph.

U.S. Talent Shines in International Leagues

Apart from their success in China, U.S. Men’s National Team players have also been making waves in various other leagues around the world. Let’s take a closer look at their performances in different countries:


T.J. DeFalco, playing for Asseco Resovia Rzeszów, has been leading the Polish PlusLiga with outstanding performances. On January 3, Resovia Rzeszów secured a 3-1 victory (23-25, 25-19, 26-24, 25-22) against Ślepsk Malow Suwałki. DeFalco’s exceptional skills were on full display as he scored 23 points, including 20 kills, two blocks, and one ace. His contributions have been essential in keeping Resovia Rzeszów at the top of the league.

Libero Erik Shoji and middle blocker David Smith, representing Grupa Azoty ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle, have also been instrumental. While Kędzierzyn-Koźle is currently in fourth place, their performances have been noteworthy. On December 30, Kędzierzyn-Koźle secured a 3-1 victory (20-25, 25-28, 27-25, 25-22) against Aluron CMC Warta Zawiercie. Smith contributed with four points, including seven kills, two aces, and one block. Shoji, although not playing in this particular match, has been a valuable asset to the team.

Middle Taylor Averill and setter Josh Tuaniga, representing Indykpol AZS Olsztyn, have showcased their talent and skills. Currently in eighth place, Olsztyn’s last league match on December 21 ended in a 3-1 victory (25-19, 25-18, 21-25, 29-27) against Jastrzębski Węgiel. Averill contributed 13 points, including nine kills, three blocks, and one ace. Tuaniga scored one point with a kill and demonstrated exceptional setting skills with Olsztyn achieving a .486 hitting efficiency.

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Meanwhile, Jeff Jendryk, playing for LUK Lublin, has been crucial to the team’s performance. In their last league match on December 20, Lublin secured a nail-biting 3-2 victory (39-37, 18-25, 17-25, 25-23, 15-10) against Kędzierzyn-Koźle. Jendryk demonstrated his skills by contributing eight points, including four kills, three blocks, and one ace. Dustin Watten, Lublin’s libero, showcased his exceptional reception skills with 13 receptions, 54 percent positive. For Kędzierzyn-Koźle, David Smith scored 11 points on seven kills and four blocks, while Kyle Shoji finished with 11 receptions, 64 percent positive.

Matt West, playing as a setter, has joined Cerrad Enea Czarni Radom. Although currently in 15th place, Radom has been fighting hard. On December 28, they faced BBTS Bielsko-Biała with Jake Hanes as the opposite player, resulting in a close 3-2 victory (25-22, 25-17, 22-25, 22-25, 15-13) for Bielsko-Biała. Hanes emerged as the leading scorer with 22 points, including 20 kills and two blocks. West played as a substitute. Bielsko-Biała is currently in 16th place.


Aaron Russell, an outside hitter, has been making his mark in the JT Thunders Hiroshima. Currently in seventh place, the team is looking forward to a successful year in the league.


Matt Anderson, playing as an opposite, has been leading Zenit St. Petersburg to a flawless performance in the Russian league. On January 4, Zenit St. Petersburg secured a 3-0 victory (25-23, 25-22, 25-19) over Ural Ufa. Anderson’s remarkable skills were evident as he scored 12 points, including 11 kills and one ace.

Meanwhile, setter Micah Christenson has been showcasing his talent for Zenit Kazan, currently in second place in the league. On January 5, Kazan secured a 3-1 victory (24-26, 27-25, 25-12, 25-20) against VC Yenisey Krasnoyarsk. Christenson contributed nine points, including four kills, three aces, and two blocks. Kazan ended 2022 on a high note by winning the Russian Cup.


U.S. middle Patrick Gasman, representing Chaumont, has been instrumental in his team’s success. Currently in second place, Chaumont secured a 3-0 victory (25-19, 25-22, 25-23) against Cambrai on December 30. Gasman contributed eight points, including seven kills and one block. American Michael Marshman is also part of Chaumont’s roster.

The contributions of opposite Kyle Ensing have been crucial to St. Nazaire’s success. Currently in fourth place, St. Nazaire secured a 3-1 victory (25-20, 25-18, 24-26, 25-20) against Poitiers on December 30. Ensing emerged as the leading scorer with 23 points, including 19 kills, two blocks, and two aces.

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Kyle Russell, playing as an opposite for Sète, has showcased his skills in the league. Currently in ninth place, Sète secured a 3-0 victory (25-18, 25-19, 25-23) against Tourcoing on December 30. Russell emerged as the leading scorer with 24 points, including 22 kills and two aces. Russell leads the league in aces with 22 in 43 sets played.

Kyle Dagostino, serving as libero for Nice, has been contributing significantly to the team’s performance. Currently in 12th place, Nice faced Nantes Reze on December 30, resulting in a 3-0 victory (25-17, 25-20, 25-17) for Nantes Reze. Dagostino showcased his outstanding reception skills, earning 16 receptions with 56 percent positive.

Middle blocker Tyler Mitchem, representing Plessis-Robinson, has been making valuable contributions. Currently in 13th place, Plessis-Robinson faced Paris on December 30, resulting in a 3-0 victory (25-22, 25-16, 25-21) for Paris. Mitchem scored seven points, including four kills, two blocks, and one ace.


Cody Kessel, playing as an outside hitter for the Berlin Recycling Volleys, has been leading the German league with exceptional performances. On January 4, Berlin secured a 3-1 victory (21-25, 25-21, 25-14, 25-23) against SVG Lüneburg. Kessel played as a substitute. Gage Worsley, the U.S. libero, was credited with 23 receptions, 26 percent positive. Jordan Ewert, an outside hitter, started the first three sets and contributed 10 points for Lüneburg with eight kills and two blocks. Colton Cowell, also an outside hitter, scored six points with five kills and one ace. Joe Worsley, serving as a setter, contributed one point with a block and set Lüneburg to a .349 hitting efficiency. Lüneburg is in fifth place in the league.

James Shaw, an impressive setter, has been making his mark in WWK Volleys Herrsching. Currently in sixth place, Herrsching secured a 3-1 victory (25-23, 25-18, 26-28, 25-20) against Haching München on January 4. Shaw contributed six points, including four aces, one block, and one kill. He set Herrsching to a .440 hitting efficiency.


The men’s league in Turkiyë took a break starting from December 17.


Gabi Garcia, playing as an opposite for Cucine Lube Civitanova, has been making significant contributions. Currently in second place in Italy’s Serie A League, Civitanova secured a 3-0 victory (25-22, 25-14, 25-17) against Pallavolo Padova on December 26. Garcia played as a substitute and scored three points with two kills and one ace.

CEV Tournaments

In the CEV Champions League, Halkbank Ankara, with Micah Ma’a, is in second place in Pool B with a 3-1 record. The Berlin Recycling Volleys, with Cody Kessel, are in third place. The two teams faced each other on December 13, resulting in a 3-0 victory (25-16, 35-33, 25-22) for Ankara. Ma’a scored three points with a kill and two blocks while setting Ankara to a remarkable .516 hitting efficiency. Kessel played as a substitute.

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Cucine Lube Civitanova, with Gabi Garcia, leads Pool C with a perfect 4-0 record.

Shoji, Smith, and Grupa Azoty ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle, the two-time defending Champions League champions, are in second place in Pool D with a 3-1 record.

Germany’s SVG Lüneburg, featuring Joe Worsley, Gage Worsley, Ewert, and Cowell, have advanced to the playoff round of the CEV Cup. They will face Italy’s Valsa Group Modena in a two-match series.


1. Which U.S. Men’s National Team players are currently playing in China?
Currently, Thomas Jaeschke and Max Holt are playing for Beijing in the Chinese league.

2. Who is currently leading the Polish PlusLiga?
T.J. DeFalco and Asseco Resovia Rzeszów are leading the Polish PlusLiga.

3. Who are the key players representing Grupa Azoty ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle in Poland?
Libero Erik Shoji and middle blocker David Smith are currently representing Grupa Azoty ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle in Poland.

4. Which U.S. Men’s National Team players are performing well in France?
Patrick Gasman and Chaumont, Kyle Ensing and St. Nazaire, Kyle Russell and Sète, and Kyle Dagostino and Nice are all making valuable contributions in France.

5. Who is leading the German league, and which U.S. player is playing for them?
The Berlin Recycling Volleys, with Cody Kessel, currently lead the German league.

6. Which U.S. Men’s National Team players are playing in Italy’s Serie A League?
Gabi Garcia is playing for Cucine Lube Civitanova in Italy’s Serie A League.

7. How are U.S. Men’s National Team players faring in CEV Tournaments?
Halkbank Ankara, with Micah Ma’a, is doing well in the CEV Champions League. The Berlin Recycling Volleys and Grupa Azoty ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle are also competing in the tournament.


U.S. Men’s National Team players continue to excel and make their mark in international club teams across various leagues. From China to Russia, Poland to France, and beyond, their exceptional skills and performances are a testament to their dedication and talent. As fans, we can look forward to witnessing their ongoing success as they strive to reach new heights in their respective leagues. For more updates on U.S. Men’s National Team players and the world of volleyball, visit Alpinetgheep.