VNL 2024: Experience makes USA's Manila stint a 'great success'

VNL 2024: Experience makes USA’s Manila stint a ‘great success’

/ 09:54 PM June 23, 2024

USA vs Japan VNL 2024

USA huddles during a timeout in a VNL 2024 game against Japan.-MARLO CUETO/

MANILA, Philippines — Team USA captain Micah Christenson had a first Manila trip to remember despite the Americans missing the Final Eight of the Volleyball Nations League (VNL).

The United States wrapped up its campaign in Manila with a 25-20, 25-23, 25-19 loss to Japan in a much-awaited clash between the two fan favorites played before an ecstatic 12,424 crowd at Mall of Asia Arena on Sunday night.

The Americans, last year’s runners-up will miss the Final Eight with a 5-7 record, but Christenson and his teammates will bring great memories with them as they head back home and gear up for the upcoming Paris Olympics.


READ: VNL 2024: Japan beats USA for first time in Manila finale

“Incredible. It was capped off with an incredible crowd, the last game up here in Manila so, wish we could’ve made it a little longer of a match, but at the same time it was good volleyball, it was really good volleyball out there on the court,” said the star setter, who only played late in the third set as both squads decided to rest most of their key cogs.

“I’m really proud of our guys and how we fought and how we battled. So now, we’re just gonna keep learning from our experience but, our trip in Manila was a great success based on our experience.”

American stars Matt Anderson and TJ Defalco sat the game out as Taylor Averill and Erik Shoji were the remaining starters in the match.


Still, Christenson praised Japan for its solid showing with Kento Miyaura stepping up big time. 

“We showed our level in a lot of the sets, but towards the end of the sets, Japan really turned their serving pressure on especially, Miyaura, at the end of at least the last two sets, he came in with some really big serves,” he said.


READ: VNL 2024: USA posts second straight win ahead of Japan clash

The Americans may have missed the Final Eight in Poland after splitting their four matches in Manila. But they will come home with big smiles on their faces.

Christenson and the United States now shift their focus to the Paris Games, where they hope to take home the gold.

“It’s great. We’re gonna need everybody at the Olympics, so, from the top down, we’re gonna need everybody on this team. So to be able to have the ability to give them experience in a big game, in a sold-out crowd against Japan is a wonderful experience,” he said 

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

TAGS: USA, Volleyball Nations League (VNL)

© Copyright 1997-2024 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.