2018 FIVB Men’s Volleyball World Championships – Final Six
- Sept. 26-30, 2018
- Pool I – Brazil, USA, Russia
With a spot in the semifinals already a surety, American coach John Speraw opted to give his younger players some experience in the pool finale against Brazil on Friday – who also used a number of reserves for the match.
Only Dan McDonnell remained from the team’s usual starting lineup, which had won nine straight matches coming into the contest. McDonnell did shift over from middle blocker to outside hitter.
Jeff Jendryk, Ben Patch, Jake Langlois, Taylor Averill and Kawika Shoji joined him in the starting lineup, while Dustin Watten played libero. This is the same lineup that swept Iran on Sept. 23.
Brazil utilized 12 players in the match, with acting coach Marcelo Fronckowiak opting to rest Lucas Saatkamp and Luiz Felipe. Douglas Souza started the match, but did play after Set 1. Mauricio Souza played the first two sets, notching four points before exiting. William Arjona started at setter, continuing in the role after taking over from Bruno Mossa Rezende in Set 3 of the comeback win against Russia on Wednesday.
Brazil will play the second place finisher from Pool J, while the USA will play the top team out of the group in the semifinals on Saturday.
Brazil def. USA 3-0 (25-20 ,25-18,
“We played very well: serve and attack were great,” Brazilian opposite Evandro Guerra said. “We are happy about the first place in the pool and we have no preference about the opponent: we will think about our play, not theirs.”
The Americans were overmatched offensively, 45-24 in kills, and were outserved 9-7, but boasted a 7-4 edge in blocks.
Evandro led all scorers with 19 points (15 kills, 3 aces, 1 block). Carlos Barreto added 11 points on 10 kills and a block. Eder Carbonera chipped in six scores, including a team-best two blocks and an ace. The remainder of the players were in and out of the lineup, with Douglas Souza, notching six points (4 kills, 2 aces) in the opening stanza and Lucas Eduardo Loh tacking on six of his own over the final two sets.
Jeff Jendryk and Jake Langlois tallied nine points apiece to lead the United State, with each posting six kills, two blocks and an ace. Jendryk hit at a .857 clip in the match. The remainder of the starters also scored at least three points each. Taylor Averill and Ben Patch turned in five kills apiece, while McDonnell added two kills and two aces.
“I think our team prepared for this match as if it was a semifinal or final match because that’s the style we want to practice,” Patch said. “I think that’s why it stings, even though we knew we were in the semifinals. I think it’s important for us to get any opportunity to get better.”