WICHITA, Kan. (July 17, 2009) – The United States secured its lead in Pool A and most likely earned a spot in the World League final round with a 3-0 (25-21, 32-30, 31-29) victory over Netherlands on Friday at Koch Arena in Wichita.
The victory improves the United States’ record to 8-3 in Pool A. Netherlands falls to 4-7. The two teams will play again on Saturday at 7 p.m.
The United States was led by Clay Stanley with 18 points. David Lee added 11. Sean Rooney scored nine.
Robert Horstink led Netherlands with 18 points.
The United States took an 8-6 lead at the first technical timeout (TTO) of the first set. A kill by Hein coming out of the TTO improved the lead to three and the U.S. held on to the three-point lead at the second TTO, 16-13. Netherlands drew to within one with a kill and a tip out of the timeout; but kills by Hein and Touzinsky improved the U.S. lead back to three. Touzinsky continued to hit well, helping the U.S. secure the set victory.
Netherlands came out strong in the second set and led 8-4 at the first TTO. With the Netherlands leading 14-9, Team USA substituted Hansen for Suxho at setter. But Netherlands held a 16-11 lead after a kill by Horstink took the teams into the second TTO. Netherlands seemed to have things well in hand at 20-15 when Hansen got the serve on a Dutch error. Team USA scored the next seven points in a row, despite a Netherlands timeout, including two kills and a block by Stanley.
The Dutch reached set point first at 24-23, but a Netherlands serving error tied the score. Netherlands reached set point three more times, but was unsuccessful. Team USA took its first set point at 28-27, but Kooistra’s kill tied the score. With the score tied 30-30, Netherlands served into the net and Stanley followed up with a kill off the block to take the set at 32-30.
Netherlands took an 8-6 lead at the first TTO of the third set. But the U.S. kept up the pressure and tied the score at 12-12 on Rooney’s tip. Team USA led 16-15 at the second TTO. The end of the match was another marathon, with the U.S. scoring the final two points on a kill by Lee and a block by Rooney.