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BYU's Sander leads Team USA to World League volleyball title

Published July 21, 2014 6:42 pm

Volleyball • Ex-Coug earns MVP honors after helping lead Americans past top-ranked Brazil
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Not quite three months after leading BYU to league and conference tournament titles, Taylor Sander helped the U.S. Men's National Volleyball Team win a World League title on Sunday in Florence, Italy.

Sander was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player and Best Outside Spiker, for which he received a $40,000 bonus.

The U.S. Team defeated top-ranked Brazil 3-1 in the championship match.

Another former BYU player — Russell Holmes — was also a member of the team and ex-Cougar Mike Wall was was an assistant coach.

Sander collected 24 points during the match, including 22 kills.

From Huntington Beach, Calif., Sander recently signed a professional volleyball contract with a team in Italy. He led Team USA in points for three consecutive matches in the tournament.

"Taylor Sander played an amazing game," said middle blocker David Lee in a USA Volleyball news release. "Guys like him are the future and tonight really couldn't have worked out better."

Sander also contributed two blocks in the gold medal win as the U.S. joined Brazil (9), Italy (8) and Russia (3) as teams that have won gold more than once at the FIVB World League Championships. The United States' last gold medal at the World League came against Serbia in 2008.

Next up for Sander and Team USA is the USA Volleyball Cup against Iran in August in Los Angeles, Anaheim and San Diego.