U.S. Girls' Youth Team Off to Good Start in Croatia

Dec. 29, 2008, 12:55 a.m. (ET)

Bill Kauffman
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: 719-228-6800
E-Mail: bill.kauffman@usav.org

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Dec. 28, 2008) - A U.S. Girls' Youth Team, in cooperation with Bring It Promotions, opened the 2008 MEZVA Youth Girl's Championship with two victories on Dec. 28 at Pula, Croatia.

Team USA opened the tournament with a 25-23, 25-22, 25-17 victory over Israel, followed by a 25-21, 25-18, 28-26 victory over Croatia. The U.S. finished group A with a 2-0 record and 6-0 set score record.

Croatia dealt Israel a 3-1 loss in the remaining Group A match. In Pool B, Slovakia and Slovenia are 2-0 and hold identical 5-1 set scores. Hungary is in third place in Group B with a 2-4 set record, followed by Austria with an 0-6 record in sets played.

Team USA faces the second-place team from Group B at 5 p.m. local time on Dec. 29, which will be the loser of the Slovakia-Slovenia match played at 10 a.m. on Dec. 29. The tournament concludes on Dec. 30 with the classification matches. The third-place match takes place at 10 a.m., followed by the championship match at 12:30 p.m.

For additional information on the two victories, including player journals, visit the Bring It Promotions Web site.

Although not the official U.S. Girls' Youth National Team, the 12-player roster playing in Croatia includes eight players who competed for the 2008 U.S. Girls' Youth National Team which captured the NORCECA Girls' Youth Championship in Puerto Rico to qualify for the 2009 FIVB Girls' Youth World Championship. All 12 players on the roster were born in either 1992 or 1993.

U.S. Girls' Youth Team Roster for the MEZVA Tournament

# - Name (Hometown, Position, Club, Region)
2 - Stephanie Holthus (Elgin, Ill., Libero/Outside Hitter, Fusion, Great Lakes)
3 - Jennifer Bonilla (Reseda, Calif., Libero, SCVC, SCVA)
4 - Erica Denney (Centennial, Colo., Middle Blocker, Front Range, Rocky Mountain)
5 - Tori Dixon (Savage, Minn., Middle Blocker, Northern Lights, North Country)
6 - Anna Dorn (Munster, Ind., Middle Blocker, Dunes, Hoosier)
7 - Adrienne Gehan (Dallas, Texas, Outside Hitter, Skyline Juniors, North Texas)
13 - Molly Kreklow (Hamlake, Minn., Setter, Mizuno Northern Lights, North Country)
14 - Jane Croson (Lakewood, Calif., Outside Hitter, Cal Juniors, SCVA)
15 - Amy Scullion (Salem, Ohio, Outside Hitter, Tri-County, Ohio Valley)
16 - Carly Thomas (Swansea, Ill., Setter, Southwest Illinois VBC, Gateway)
17 - Jazmine Orozco (Lakewood, Calif., Outside Hitter, SCVC, SCVA)
18 - Ashley Wittman (Shakopee, Minn., Outside Hitter, Mizuno Northern Lights, North Country)

Head Coach: Jim Stone (Columbus, Ohio, retired Ohio State Women's Head Coach)
Assistant Coach: Melissa Wolter (Pensacola, Fla., University of West Florida Head Coach)
Stats: Herb Summers (Burbank, Calif.)