Tuesday, 23 Jul 2024

Kessel Leads U.S. Men to Victory over Puerto Rico


Colorado Springs native Cody Kessel showcased his talent as he led the U.S. Men’s volleyball team to a decisive 3-0 victory over Puerto Rico in the NORCECA Champions Cup. The match took place at the prestigious U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Training Center, adding to the significance of the win.

Dominant Performance by Kessel and the U.S. Men’s Team

Kessel, playing as an outside hitter, stood out with an impressive performance, scoring 13 points. His contribution included 10 successful attacks, two blocks, and one ace. Notably, Kessel’s outstanding performance helped secure the U.S. Men’s lead in attacks, blocks, and aces against Puerto Rico.

Joining Kessel in the limelight were David Wieczorek and Pat Gasman, both of whom made significant contributions to the team’s victory. Wieczorek, an outside hitter, scored 10 points with his remarkable kills, while Gasman, a middle blocker, added 10 points, including five blocks, four attacks, and one ace. Michael Wexter, an opposite player, and Nick Amado, a middle blocker, also made notable contributions to the team’s success with a total of nine and seven points, respectively.

Stellar Performance by the Supporting Cast

Garrett Zolg, the setter of the U.S. Men’s team, showcased his skills by contributing four points, including three aces. Zolg’s precise setting helped the team achieve an impressive .416 hitting efficiency. Additionally, libero Josh Ayzenberg exhibited excellent defensive skills, leading the team with 15 digs, while Kessel provided strong support with seven digs.

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Gabriel Garcia emerged as Puerto Rico’s leading scorer with 13 points, displaying an impressive performance despite his team’s loss.

Key Players and Lineup

The U.S. Men’s team featured an outstanding lineup, with the following players taking the court against Puerto Rico:

  • Outside hitters: David Wieczorek and Cody Kessel
  • Middle blockers: Pat Gasman and Nick Amado
  • Opposite: Michael Wexter
  • Setter: Garrett Zolg
  • Libero: Josh Ayzenberg

A Reflection of Teamwork and Determination

Captain Cody Kessel expressed his pride in the team’s hard work and dedication, highlighting the importance of the Olympic & Paralympic Training Center’s facilities in their success. Kessel’s positive outlook sets the stage for the team’s upcoming battles, fostering enthusiasm among fans and supporters.

According to Coach Matt Werle, serving and passing played a crucial role in the team’s impressive performance. The first set, in particular, showcased the team’s serving strength, with Pat Gasman setting the tone early on. Werle also commended Garrett Zolg for his exceptional running of the offense, emphasizing the team’s ability to dominate the court. The coach further noted that the U.S. Men’s team’s athleticism outmatched their opponents, leading to a convincing win.

Looking Ahead and Rising to the Challenge

While Puerto Rico’s Captain Pelegrin Vargas acknowledged their rough start and young team, he remains optimistic about their future performances. Vargas emphasized the need for continuous improvement and expressed confidence that the team will steadily progress with each match.

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Puerto Rico’s Coach Oswald Antonetti credited the U.S. team for their preparedness and athleticism. Despite the challenging start, Antonetti is hopeful that as his team adjusts to the tournament’s demands, they will deliver a stronger performance in the upcoming matches.


Q: Who scored the most points for the U.S. Men’s team against Puerto Rico?

A: Cody Kessel took the lead with 13 points, showcasing his versatility and skill as an outside hitter.

Q: What was the final score of the match?

A: The U.S. Men’s team emerged victorious with a 3-0 win over Puerto Rico.

Q: Where did the match take place?

A: The match took place at the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.


Cody Kessel’s outstanding performance, coupled with the well-coordinated efforts of the U.S. Men’s volleyball team, secured a resounding victory over Puerto Rico. The team’s dominant presence on the court and their superior skills showcased their determination to achieve greatness. With their eyes set on future battles, the U.S. Men’s team demonstrates their potential to emerge as an indomitable force in international volleyball.