LBSU setter Tuaniga named MVP at U21 NORECA Championship

There were even more honors than a gold medal for Long Beach State setter Josh Tuaniga at the U21 NORCECA Continental Championship.

The All-American was selected as the Best Setter and the Most Valuable Player of the international tournament following the U.S. Men’s Junior National Team’s four-game win against Cuba in the gold-medal match on Sunday.


Tuaniga guided the United States to the tournament’s second-best offensive efficiency at 54.9 percent and a .413 attack percentage, including hitting .377 in its gold-medal victory. In addition, the AVCA All-American and Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. Freshman All-American selection led all players with a 9.92 assists per game average.

This is the first time a U.S. player earned most valuable player honors at the bi-annual event since BYU opposite Ben Patch won the award in 2012.

Along with Tuaniga, Stanford outside attacker Jordan Ewert received the Best Spiker award.

Ewert led the United States with 18 kills in the gold-medal match. He also had a tournament-best 56.9 percent offensive efficiency in the United States’ four wins throughout the tournament.

With its gold-medal finish, the United States received the lone NORCECA automatic berth to the 2017 World Championship. It is also the third time the United States won this NORCECA event and the first time it accomplished the feat since 2012.

U21 NORCECA CONGENITAL CHAMPIONSHIP AWARDS
Most Valuable Player: Josh Tuaniga, United States
Best Setter: Josh Tuaniga, United States
Best Spiker: Jordan Ewert, United States
Best Spiker: Miguel David Gutierrez, Cuba
Co-Best Blocker: Marcus Thomas, St. Vincent
Co-Best Blocker: Roamy Alonso, Cuba
Best Receiver: Jordan Pereira, Canada
Best Server: Miguel Gutierrez Suarez, Cuba
Best Digger: Jordan Pereira, Canada
Best Libero: Jordan Pereira, Canada
Best Opposite: Erik Flores, Guatemala
Best Scorer: Erik Flores, Guatemala