SIBENIK, Croatia, August 27. THE USA Men's Junior Team showed little rust after two days off at the FINA Men's Junior World Championships by dispatching of Brazil 8-1. The victory puts the United States at 3-1 thus far in competition with a match against host Croatia on Friday. Seven players scored in the balanced attack for the United States that saw them hold Brazil scoreless until the fourth quarter.
Team USA got off to a strong start opening up a 2-0 lead in the first quarter on scores from Forrest Watkins (SoCal) and Griffin White (SoCal). They built on that advantage in the second quarter scoring another pair of goals courtesy of Nick Hoversten (Lamorinda) and Paul Reynolds (SoCal). Hoversten's tally was his first of the tourney as he scored on a breakaway following a perimeter steal. Team USA was in firm control leading 4-0 going into the third quarter.
The second half saw much of the same from the United States. Spencer Hamby (VC Premier), White, Nikola Vavic (Trojan), and Josh Samuels (SoCal) added four more goals to the team's final tally. A great team defensive effort forced the Brazilian offense into difficult shots. Brazil finally converted on their final extra man opportunity with less than three minutes left to play in the game. Jon Sibley (Lamorinda) and Andrew Lighterink (San Diego Shores) were strong in the cage and combined for 13 saves.
"I thought the boys played tremendous defense tonight," said Doug Peabody, USA Head Coach. "We had great focus throughout the game. We will need to continue to have high level defensive intensity to advance in the tournament."
"It was great to finally play after a long two-day lay off," said Griffin White. "We played exceptional team defense, but we will need to be more consistent on offense to have success tomorrow night."
The United States will play host team Croatia in the quarter final tomorrow night at 8:30 PM local time in Croatia.
USA 8 – 2 2 2 2
BRA 1- 0 0 0 1
Saves: Sibley 10, Lighterink 3
Goals: White 2, Samuels 1, Reynolds 1, Watkins 1, Hamby 1, Vavic 1, Hoversten 1
Penalties: USA 2/2
Extra Man: USA 2/7
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