South Korean standout too much for U.S. at U19 World Championship

Photo courtesy of the FIVB

It took one of the top offensive performances so far at the FIVB U19 World Championship for the United States to suffer its first loss.

Outside attacker Hanyong Joung led all players with a tournament-high 29 kills as South Korea rallied to beat the United States 25-27, 25-17, 25-20, 25-22 on Thursday in Tunisia.

Joung finished the match with a 67.4 percent offensive efficiency and was one of two South Korean players to have double-digit kills. The outside attacker also had a match-high two aces to help South Korea rebound from a tournament-opening loss on Wednesday.

South Korea had seven aces in the victory — four more aces than United States. In addition, the United States with 32 errors committed nine more errors than South Korea.


Despite the loss, five U.S. starters had at least five kills.

UCLA middle attacker Ethan Hill led the United States with 14 kills on a 60.9 percent offensive efficiency. Long Beach State opposite Clarke Godbold playing in only the first three games contributed 10 kills on a 52.6 percent offensive efficiency.

UCLA outside attacker Alex Knight also had eight kills along with a match-high four blocks.

With this loss, the United States drops to third place in its five-team pool. The United States opened the U19 World Championship with a sweep against the Dominican Republic.

The team will continue the pool-play round as it faces the African Championships gold medalists Nigeria on Friday.

The top four teams in each of the tournament’s four pools at the conclusion of the opening round will advance to the Round of 16.