France experienced first-hand just why there is so much hype surrounding Long Beach State incoming recruit TJ DeFalco.
DeFalco had a team-high 18 kills and six aces as the United States defeated France 26-24, 25-21, 23-25, 25-16 on Monday in Argentina to remain undefeated at the FIVB Youth World Championship and clinch a berth in the Round of 16.
The United States in the victory had a tournament-best 13 aces, including 10 aces in the first two games. In addition, DeFalco, the 2015 Volleyball Magazine High School National Player of the Year, had two aces as part of a 4-0 run to close out the opening-game win in overtime.
UCLA incoming recruit Micah Ma’a also had four aces against France (1-3. 4 points)
The United States (3-0, 7 points) had three players finish the match with at least nine kills. Along with DeFalco, Long Beach State incoming recruit Kyle Ensing had 18 kills, while Stanford incoming recruit Jordan Ewert added nine kills.
France outside attacker Joachim Panou in the loss led all players with 19 kills.
This was also the third consecutive match that middle attacker Scott Stadick led the United States in blocks. Stadick had a match-high six blocks as the United States out-blocked France 11 to 6.
With this victory, the United States remains in sole possession of second place in Group A and clinches at least the Group A No. 2 seed for the upcoming Round of 16.
The United States can win the Group A championship and secure the No. 1 seed if it beats first-place Argentina (3-0, 8 points) in its group-play finale on Tuesday.