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Jul 12 Men's Sitting Team Turns Lights out on Azerbaijan

July 12, 2011, 4:25 p.m. (ET)

B.J. Hoeptner Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: (719) 228-6800
E-Mail: bj.evans@usav.org

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 12, 2011) – A 5-minute blackout during the second set didn’t dim the U.S. Men’s National Sitting Team’s resolve as it defeated Azerbaijan, 25-14, 25-11, 25-11 on Tuesday at the 2011 Continental Cup in Kettering, England.

The United States improves to 2-0 in Pool B. On Wednesday, the U.S. will finish pool play with two matches; the first against Russia (2-0) and the second against Egypt (1-1). Egypt finished third at the 2010 Sitting Volleyball World Championships while Russia placed fourth. On Tuesday, Russia defeated Egypt, 25-21, 25-23, 25-21.

Although Team USA’s play on Tuesday was not as sharp as during its Monday win over China, the U.S. cruised through the match while involving everyone on the roster.

The U.S. Men out-blocked Azerbaijan, 6-0, led by James Stuck (New Kensington, Pa./Edmond, Okla.) with three and Charlie Swearingen (Gulfport, Miss./Edmond, Okla.) with two. The U.S. Men also led in aces, 5-3, led by Team Captain Brent Rasmussen (Omaha, Neb.) with two.

The United States’ hitting efficiency was 0.205 while Azerbaijan hit -.057 for the match.

Rasmussen led the team with nine points on seven kills and his two aces. Eric Duda (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Edmond, Okla.) contributed eight points on seven kills and one ace.

Head Coach Edgar Miraku (Elbasan, Albania/Edmond, Okla.) was satisfied with the team’s performance, but recognized that the competition is only going to get tougher. 

“We were able to play at the level we set throughout the match,” Miraku said. “Sometimes we wereDan Regan attacks the ball as Hugo Storer, far left, and Ed O'Neil, center, watch during a practice Tuesday for the Continental Cup in Kettering, England. Photo: Courtesy of Elliott Blake Dan Regan attacks the ball as Hugo Storer, far left, and Ed O'Neil, center, watch during a practice Tuesday for the Continental Cup in Kettering, England. not at our best and sometimes we were, but at least we were able to give some valuable playing time to all of players and some rest to others.”

Among other U.S. scorers, Dan Regan (St. Louis, Mo./Edmond, Okla.) scored six points on six attacks. Swearingen added five points on his two blocks, two kills and one ace. Stuck added five points on two kills and his three blocks.

J. Dee Marinko(Newcastle, Okla.) totaled four points on two kills, one block and one ace. Roderick Green (West Monroe, La./Edmond, Okla.) added two points on two attacks and Hugo Storer (San Juan, Puerto Rico) scored one point on one attack.

Miraku started Regan, Swearingen, Duda, Rasmussen, Stuck and Marinko. Ed O’Neil (Amherst, Mass./Edmond, Okla.) was the designated libero.

2011 Men’s Sitting Volleyball Continental Cup
Kettering, England

U.S. Men’s Sitting Volleyball Team
Number Name (Hometown/Resident athletes at the University of Central Oklahoma are noted)

2 Dan Regan (St. Louis, Mo./Edmond, Okla.)
3 Charlie Swearingen (Gulfport, Miss./Edmond, Okla.)
4 Ed O'Neil (Amherst, Mass./Edmond, Okla.)
5 Eric Duda (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Edmond, Okla.)
8 James Stuck (New Kensington, Pa./Edmond, Okla.)
9 Hugo Storer (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
11 Roderick Green (West Monroe, La./Edmond, Okla.)
12 Brent Rasmussen (Omaha, Neb.)
18 J. Dee Marinko (Newcastle, Okla.)

Head Coach: Edgar Miraku (Elbasan, Albania/Edmond, Okla.)
Assistant Coach/Team Leader: Dixie Collins (Marshall, Va.)
Statistician: Elliott Blake
Athletic Trainer: Brian Choate

Pool B
Azerbaijan
China
Egypt 
Russia
USA

Pool A
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Brazil
Canada
Great Britain
Kazakhstan
Ukraine

Competition Results and Schedule (All times local)

Pool B

July 11
USA def. China , 15-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-20
Azerbaijan def. Russia, 25-10, 25-5, 25-7

July 12
Egypt def. Azerbaijan, 25-8, 25-17, 25-11
Russia def. China, 25-14, 25-11, 25-15)
USA def. Azerbaijan, 25-14, 25-11, 25-15
Russia def. Egypt, 25-21, 25-23, 25-21

July 13
9:30 a.m.: USA vs. Russia
11:30 a.m. China vs. Egypt
4:30 p.m.: Azerbaijan vs. China
6:30 p.m.: Egypt vs. USA

Pool A

July 11
Brazil def. Great Britain, 25-15, 27-25, 25-17
Ukraine def. Canada, 25-9, 25-7, 25-16
Bosnia & Herzegovina def. Kazakhstan, 25-11, 25-8, 25-11

July 12
Ukraine def. Great Britain, 25-9, 25-13, 25-10
Kazakhstan def. Canada, 25-23, 25-22, 22-25, 30-28
Bosnia & Herzegovina def. Brazil, 25-11, 25-15, 25-22
Great Britain def. Kazakhstan, 25-22, 16-25, 25-20, 25-21
Bosnia & Herzegovina def. Canada, 25-17,25-9, 25-13
Ukraine def. Brazil, 24-26, 25-14, 25-9, 25-20

July 13
9 a.m.: Great Britain vs. Bosnia & Herzegovina
11 a.m.: Ukraine vs. Kazakhstan
1 p.m.: Brazil vs. Canada
4 p.m.: Bosnia & Herzegovina vs. Ukraine
6 p.m.: Kazakhstan vs. Brazil
8 p.m.: Canada vs. Great Britain

Final Rounds

July 14
10 a.m. Classification 9-11: 5B vs. 6A
Noon Quarterfinal: 2A vs. 3B
2 p.m. Quarterfinal: 2B vs. 3A
3 p.m. Quarterfinal: 1A vs. 4B
4 p.m. Quarterfinal: 1B vs. 4A

July 15
10 a.m. Classification 9-11: 6A vs. 5A
Noon: Semifinal 5-8
2 p.m.: Semifinal 5-8
4 p.m.: Semifinal 1-4
6 p.m.: Semifinal 1-4

July 16
9 a.m.: 7th Place
9:30 a.m.: Classification 9-11
11 a.m.: 5th Place
1 p.m.: 3rd Place
3 p.m.: Championship

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