An incoming freshman recruit for USC has now added an international tournament medal to his resume before playing with the Trojans.
USC recruit Lucas Yoder and his partner TJ DeFalco representing the United States beat Lithuania’s Lukas Kazdailis and Arnas Rumsevicius 22-24, 21-18, 15-8 to win the bronze medal at the FIVB Boys’ U19 Youth World Championships for beach volleyball on Sunday in Portugal.
Yoder and DeFelco playing in their first FIVB tournament together captured the United States’ first medal at the Youth World Championship since USC’s Tony Ciarelli and Jeffrey Carlson won a silver medal in 2008. In addition, it’s the third medal for the United States in the Youth World Championships in the last 10 years.
In the bronze medal match against Lithuania, Yoder had a match-high eight blocks, including a solo block to set-up the match-point that completed the comeback victory for the United States.
Yoder, an outside attacker and the No. 3 ranked high school college men’s volleyball recruit by Volleyball Magazine, signed a national letter of intent to play for USC in November. The California native also was named a high school All-American as a senior.
DeFalco, an outside attacker from Huntington Beach, Calif., finished his sophomore season earning high school All-American honors. The Youth World Championship was also DeFalco’s first international beach volleyball tournament.
Yoder and DeFalco become the second American men’s pair comprised of high school and college players to finish the top 10 at an international tournament this summer. Harvard sophomore Branden Clemens and his partner finished in ninth place at the FIVB Boys’ U21 Junior World Championships.