U.S. Girls' Youth National Team Falls to Japan

July 05, 2009, 6:20 a.m. (ET)

Maura Gladys
Intern, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: (719) 228-6886
E-Mail: maura.gladys@usav.org

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 5, 2009) -The United States Girls’ Youth National Team lost to Japan 3-0 (25-23, 25-18, 25-14) on July 5 during the final day of pool play at the 2009 FIVB Girls’ Youth World Championship in Nakhonratchasima, Thailand.

The loss drops Team USA to the bottom of Pool D, eliminating it from championship contention.

“We did not play well,” United States Head Coach Jim Stone said. “It was not a competitive match. I want my girls to learn from the mistakes they made in order to improve their game in the remaining matches.”

The first set saw Japan take an early lead, but the United States kept the score close. After tying the score at 23-23, Japan scratched out the 25-23 win. In the second set, Japan pulled out to an early 8-3 lead but the United States rallied to close the gap to 13-11. The U.S. was never able to gain the upper hand however, falling 25-18.  Japan dominated the third set, opening up a 18-8 lead and closing out the set and the match, 25-14.

Haley Eckerman (Waterloo, Iowa) led the way for the United States with a team-high twelve points which included 11 kills and one block. Captain Carly Wopat  (Goleta, Calif.) also had a standout performance with ten points, all of them kills.  Katherine Bell (Mesquite, Tex.) contributed seven points with one kill and six blocks. Olivia Okoro (Carrollton, Tex.) added five points including three kills and two blocks. Carly Thomas (Swansea, Ill.) and Samantha Wopat (Goleta, Calif.) had two points each with Thomas garnering one kill and one block and Wopat adding one kill and one ace. Hannah Allison (Siloam Springs, Ark.) and Madelyn Hutson (Brentwood, Tenn.) had one block each, and Andrea McHugh (Yorba Linda, Calif.) finished with one kill. Libero Jennifer Bonilla (Reseda Calif.) added six digs.

Japan was led by the trio of Azusa Futami, Fumika Moriya and Yumiko Mochimaru. Futami led the way with 13 points, including twelve kills and one block, while Moriya added 11 kills and one block, and Mochimaru contributed eight kills, one block and two aces.

The United States committed 23 errors compared to Japan’s 14, but it also out-blocked Japan 12-3.

“We have to practice more to get ready for the much tougher competition in the quarterfinals,” Chisato Mistuyama, the China captain, said. “A tough task awaits our team, but we will try our best.”

Earlier in the day, Belgium solidified their spot at the top of Pool D with a 3-0 (25-21, 26-24, 25-18) win over Mexico. The win assures Belgium a spot in Pool F, which includes Pool B winner Turkey, Pool A runner-up Thailand and Pool C runner-up, the loser of Brazil and Italy’s match.

Team USA will be placed in Pool G along with Tunisia, Slovakia, and the third-place team in Pool A which will be determined by Germany and Thailand’s match.

2009 U.S. Girls’ Youth National Team
# - Name (Pos, Ht, Hometown, High School, Grad, Volleyball Club / Region)
1 - Hannah Allison (S, 5-11, Siloam Springs, Ark., Siloam Springs, 2010, Ozark Volleyball Academy / Delta)
2 - Katherine Bell (MB, 6-1, Mesquite, Texas, North Mesquite, 2011, Texas Assault / North Texas)
- Jennifer Bonilla (L, 5-9, Reseda, Calif., Marymount, 2010, Sports Shack / Southern California)
4 - Erica Denney (MB, 6-5, Centennial, Colo., Grandview, 2010, Front Range / Rocky Mountain)
5 - Haley Eckerman (OH, 6-3, Waterloo, Iowa, Waterloo East, 2011, Iowa Elite / Iowa)
6 - Anna Dorn* (MB, 6-4, Munster, Ind., Munster, 2010, Dunes / Hoosier)
8 - Andrea McHugh (OH, 5-10, Yorba Linda, Calif., El Dorado, 2010, Impact VBC / Southern California)
9 - Madelyn Hutson (MB, 6-6, Brentwood, Tenn., Ravenwood, 2011, Impact / Southern)
10 - Katie Messing (OH, 6-4, The Woodlands, Texas, The Woodlands High School, 2011, Asics Willowbrook / Lone Star Region)
13 - Olivia Okoro (MB, 6-0, Carrollton, Texas, Hebron, 2011, Dallas Skyline Juniors / North Texas)
16 - Carly Thomas (S, 5-11, Swansea, Ill., Althoff Catholic, 2010, Southwest Illinois VBC / Gateway)
18 - Samantha Wopat (OH, 6-1, Goleta, Calif., Dos Pueblos, 2010, Santa Barbara VBC / Southern California)
19 - Carly Wopat (OH, 6-2, Goleta, Calif., Dos Pueblos, 2010, Santa Barbara VBC / Southern California)

NOTE *: Katie Messing has replaced an injured Anna Dorn on the 12-player U.S. Girls' Youth National Team

Head Coach: Jim Stone
Assistant Coach: Melissa Wolter
Assistant Coach: Chuck Erbe
Team Leader/Manager: Heath Hoke
Doctor: Jodi Pelegrin
Team Statistics: Herb "Spike" Summers

Pool D
Belgium 3-0
Japan 2-1
Mexico 1-2
United States 0-3