(USAV) – The U.S. Men’s Junior National Team (MJNT) fell to Turkey, 25-19, 25-14, 30-28 in its opening match of the FIVB Under-21 World Championship on Friday in Brno, Czech Republic.
The team will try to regroup on Saturday when it will play Cuba (0-1) at 6 a.m. PT. Live scoring will be available on the FIVB website. In the other Pool B match on Friday, Russia defeated Cuba, 32-30, 25-17, 25-14.
After two sets spent trailing, the United States made personnel changes in the third set, bringing in setter Micah Ma’a, middle blocker George Huhmann and outside hitter Brett Rosenmeier to join opposite Kyle Ensing (14 in photo), outside hitter Austin Matautia, middle blocker Scott Stadick and libero Gage Worsely.
The U.S. MJNT took a 15-9 lead. It still led 23-19, but Turkey scored on a U.S. error, two kills and three blocks to take match point at 24-23. The United States held leads of 27-26 and 28-27, but couldn’t finish off the set and Turkey won on three straight kills.
Turkey led in kills (45-34), blocks (8-4) and aces (4-3). It scored 23 points off U.S. errors while committing 20. The MJNT’s hitting efficiency was .182 while Turkey’s was .453.
“Turkey executed at a pretty high level the entire match and put pressure on us that we were not used to,” MJNT Head Coach Jay Hosack said. “In typical USA fashion, we will bounce back from this and we will be fine against Cuba.”
Ensing led all scorers with 19 points on a match-high 17 kills and two blocks. But no other U.S. player reached double digits.
Outside hitter Dylan Missry, who started the first two sets and substituted in the third, finished with five points on four kills and one block.
Middle blocker Scott Stadick finished with four points on three kills and one ace.
“Turkey is a top-caliber team,” U.S. Team Captain Josh Tuaniga said. “We’re going to regroup right now and make sure we do what we need to do to come back strong in this pool.”
Starters for U.S. MJNT vs Turkey
Outside hitters: Jordan Ewert and Dylan Missry
Middle blockers: Patrick Gasman and Scott Stadick
Setter: Josh Tuaniga
Opposite: Kyle Ensing
Libero: Gage Worsley
Statistics for U.S. MJNT vs Turkey
Kills: Ensing 17, Missry 4, Stadick 3, Austin Matautia 2, George Huhmann 2, Gasman 2, Brett Rosenmeier 1, Ewert 1, Tuaniga 1, Micah Ma’a 1
Blocks: Ensing 2, Missry 1, Gasman 1
Aces: Ma’a 1, Huhmann 1, Stadick 1
Digs: Worsley 7, Ma’a 4, Missry 3, Matautia 2, Ensing 2, Rosenmeier 2, Gasman 1, Stadick 1
U.S. Men’s Junior National Training Team
No. Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College, Region)
2. Gage Worsley (L, 6-2, Moraga, Calif., signed with Hawaii, NCVA)
3. Josh Tuaniga (S, 6-2, Long Beach, Calif., Long Beach State, SCVA)
4. Micah Ma’a (S, 6-4, Kaneohe, Hawaii, UCLA, Aloha)
5. Dylan Missry (OH, 6-4, Holbrook, N.Y., UCLA, Garden Empire)
7. Jordan Ewert (OH, 6-5, Antioch, Calif., Stanford, NCVA)
8. Austin Matautia (OH, 6-5, Ewa Beach, Hawaii, Hawaii, Aloha)
9. Brett Rosenmeier (OH, 6-6, Virginia Beach, Va., Hawaii, Old Dominion)
14. Kyle Ensing (Opp, 6-7, Valencia, Calif., Long Beach State, SCVA)
15. Matthew Szews (Opp, 6-8, Brookfield, Wis., Ball State, Badger)
16. Patrick Gasman (MB, 6-8, Clovis, Calif., Hawaii, NCVA)
19. Scott Stadick (MB, 7-0, Watertown, Wis., UC Irvine, Badger)
20. George Huhmann (MB, 6-10, High Ridge, Mo., Princeton, Gateway)
Head Coach: Jay Hosack, George Mason University
Assistant Coach: Jonah Carson, Mountain View Volleyball Club
Assistant Coach: Matt McCarthy, Lewis University
Team Manager: Jen Armson Dyer
Doctor: David Dyck, Jr.
Technical Coordinator: Galen Dodd