Long Beach State freshmen Taylor Gregory and Andrew Sato from the men's volleyball team have been named to the 22-player U.S. Men’s Junior National Volleyball Training Team.
From the roster of 22, 12 players will be chosen to compete in the FIVB Men’s U21 World Championships in Ankara and Izmir, Turkey (Aug. 22-Sept. 1). The squad will also compete in the U21 Pan American Cup in Costa Rica, July 12-20.
The U.S. Men's Junior National Training Team will first gather in Southern California, June 16-20. During that time, they will scrimmage the Russia boys’ youth national team, and the roster will be trimmed down to 12 players.
Gregory and Sato both played key roles in Long Beach State’s success in 2013. As a redshirt freshman, Gregory led the nation with 1.47 blocks per set. The 6-foot-7 middle blocker garnered All-Moutain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) honorable mention recognition and was one of three finalists for the Off the Block/Springbak Inc. National Blocker of the Year Award.
Sato, a 5-foot-10 libero, was tops on the team and ninth in the conference with 1.82 digs per set. He was also a primary passer, registering a .960 serve receive percentage.
Both Gregory and Sato were named to the MPSF All-Freshman Team.
In addition, former 49ers David Lee and Paul Lotman were named to the 22-player roster for the 2013 FIVB World League. Lee and Lotman were both members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team, and Lee also was on the U.S. squad that won a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.
The World League is the premier annual men’s international volleyball tournament, where 18 teams from around the world compete over seven weeks of pool play in hopes of advancing to the final round on July 17-21 in Mar del Plata, Argentina.
Each weekend, 12 players from the 22-player roster will be selected to play in two World League matches.
The U.S. men, ranked fifth in the world, won the World League in 2008, finished second in 2012 and finished third in 2007 and 1992.