Hawaii team claims national title

Hawaii team claims national title

from Bill Kauffman: Media Relations and Publications Manager

AUSTIN, Texas (USA Volleyball) - Ka Ulukoa M14 Mizuno (Aloha Region) captured the 14 Open title Thursday afternoon at the 31st Annual USA Volleyball Boys' Junior National Championships held at the Austin Convention Center in Texas.

Ka Ulukoa M14 Mizuno swept runner-up San Juan VBC 14 (Puerto Rico) 25-22, 25-17 in the 14 Open Division gold-medal match.

In the first set, San Juan VBC 14 scored five unanswered points to stake an early 8-3 lead. However, Ka Ulukoa M14 Mizuno charged back into a tie at 12-all with an Evan Enriques kill, then took the lead at 14-13 with a San Juan VBC error.

San Juan VBC regained the lead at 16-15 and extended the margin to 20-17. Ka Ulukoa M14 Mizuno rattled off six of the next seven points to move ahead 23-21 thanks to two blocks from Keenan Meyer and two aces from Enriques. Ka Ulukoa closed out the set with a 25-22 victory.

With the score tied 6-3 in the second set, San Juan VBC scored three consecutive points for an early 6-3 advantage only to have Ka UluKoa M14 Mizuno score seven of the next eight points including a kill and block from Keenan Meyer pushing the advantage to 10-7 for the Hawaiian squad.

San Juan VBC responded to tie the set at a12-all, but an Adrian Faitalia block put the scored back at a two-point margin at 14-12. The block helped spark Ka Ulukoa to a 9-1 spurt after the 12-all tie as it gained a comfortable 21-13 advantage en route to finishing the set at 25-17.