U.S. releases pairs for upcoming Beach Volleyball World Championships

Four current college men’s volleyball players will represented the United States at the biggest international junior beach volleyball tournament of the year.

USA Volleyball announced Tuesday that the two beach volleyball pairs of UCLA outside attacker Jackson Bantle and Harvard outside attacker attacker Branden Clemens along with UCLA setter Hagen Smith and USC outside attacker Christopher Orenic will compete at the upcoming FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships.

Smith and Orenic received the No. 1 seed in the qualification stage and will have a first-round bye in the tournament.


As a freshman last season, Smith started nine matches and was second among UCLA players with 389 assists. He also helped the Bruins reach MPSF Tournament and finish in the top 10 of the national coaches poll.

Orenic was a serving specialist for USC during the most recent college men’s volleyball season and appeared in 14 matches.

Clemens and Bantle will begin its World Championships tournament in the main draw with its first match on Thursday.

Bantle was a Freshman All-MPSF Team selection last season after finishing among the team leaders with a 1.67 digs per game average. In addition, he had 14 aces and 27 blocks during his freshman season.

Clemens as a sophomore appeared in 23 matches for Harvard last season and had a 1.13 kills per game average along with nine aces. This also will be the second consecutive FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships for Clemens, who finished the tournament last season in ninth place.

The Beach World Championships begins Wednesday in Larnaka, Cyprus, and will conclude with the gold medal match on Sunday.