U.S. Women's Junior Team Loses to Czech Republic

July 20, 2009, 10:04 p.m. (ET)

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


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 20, 2009) – The U.S. Women’s Junior National Team pushed Czech Republic to five sets but lost 20-25, 25-16, 25-13, 21-25, 15-10 on Monday to open second-round pool competition in the FIVB Women’s Junior World Championship (Under-20) competition at Tijuana, Mexico.

Team USA will face Poland on Tuesday afternoon at 2 p.m. Pacific Time in its second of three Pool H second-round matches. Poland opens Pool H competition later Monday with a match against Venezuela at 8 p.m. Pacific Time.

The U.S. scored seven unanswered points in the opening set to take a commanding 11-5 advantage and held off a late Czech challenge with a 6-2 run at the end for a 25-20 victory. With the momentum swing from the first set, Czech Republic took a quick 7-2 lead in the second set to forge a 25-16 victory to tie the match. Czech Republic broke an 8-all tie in the third set with a 12-2 run to win 25-13.

The U.S. battled back from an early 4-1 deficit in the fourth set and broke a 14-all tie with four consecutive points on its way to win 25-21 forcing a fifth set. After falling behind 2-0 in the tiebreaker, Czech Republic reeled off 10 of the next 12 points to establish a 10-4 lead en route to a 15-10 victory. The U.S. could not overcome nine errors in the fifth set and 51 for the match.

“We came with a game plan but couldn’t keep the consistency,” U.S. Women’s Junior National Team Head Coach Paula Weishoff said. “In the second and third sets they served short and tipped balls to get in front. We are starting to play much better and we will keep fighting.”

Alexis Olgard (Spokane, Wash.) paced the U.S. with a team-high 19 points with 14 kills on 31 attacks, four blocks and an ace. Amanda Dowdy (Lexington, Ky.) chipped in five kills, two blocks and ace for eight points. Lilla Frederick (Huntington Beach, Calif.) came off the bench to score eight points with seven kills and a block. Alex Hunt (Granger, Ind.) contributed six points with five kills and an ace. Both Sarah Shaw (Austin, Texas) and Hayley Spelman (Las Vegas, Nev.) provided five points in the loss, while Morgan Broekhuis (Colorado Springs, Colo.) added three points. Kendall Bateman (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) and Karissa Cook (Santa Cruz, Calif.) rounded out the scoring with two and one point, respectively.

Kelsey Black (Amarillo, Texas) tallied a team-high five digs and 25 excellent receptions on 47 attempts. Bateman contributed 34 assists, while Cook chipped in five assists in a reserve role.

Czech Republic benefited from 51 Team USA errors compared to its own 32 miscues, which offset the American’s 45-40 kill advantage. Czech Republic held slim margins in blocks (10-9) and aces (5-3), but its four service errors to the USA’s 14 played a key role in the service game. The U.S. converted 30.41 percent of its attacks into kills, but 29 attack errors contributed to a .108 hitting efficiency. Czech Republic converted attacks into kills at a 29.20 percent clip and had a .153 hitting efficiency.

“We started strong as usual but then the Czechs came back with smart plays to take the second and third sets,” said Bateman, the USA captain. “We recovered but in the tie-breaker they separated quickly, and it was difficult for us to get the momentum back.”

The U.S. started captain Bateman at setter, Spelman at opposite, Dowdy and Olgard at middle blocker and Shaw and Hunt at outside hitter. Kelsey Black (Amarillo, Texas) was the designated libero for the match. Frederick subbed in the first two sets and started the final three sets, while Broekhuis started the third and fourth sets. Cook was a sub in the second and fourth sets. Ashleigh McCord (Wylie, Texas) subbed into the match during the second set, while Mallory Woolridge (Henrico, Va.) was a sub in the third set.

“I am very happy to get our first victory in this championship,” Czech Republic Head Coach Stanislav Mitac said. “The two teams have the same level and we had to recover from many mistakes. That’s what happened in the whole match. Many unforced errors from both teams.”

Czech Republic’s Tereza Vanzurova led all players with 21 points via 18 kills, two aces and a block. Michala Kvapilova added nine points in the Czech victory.

The U.S., which was 0-3 in the tournament’s opening round Pool D, qualified for the FIVB Women’s Junior World Championship by winning the 2008 NORCECA Women’s Junior Continental Championship in Mexico.

U.S. Women’s Junior National Team
# - Name (Position, Height, Hometown, Region, Club or College, High School Grad Year)
1 - Kendall Bateman (S, 5-11, Manhattan Beach, Calif., SCVA, University of Southern California, 2008)
2 - Kelsey Black (OH/L, 6-0, Amarillo, Texas, Sun Country, Texas A&M, 2008)
3 - Morgan Broekhuis (OPP/S, 6-6, Colorado Springs, Colo., Rocky Mountain, Colorado Juniors, 2010)
4 - Karissa Cook (S, 6-0, Santa Cruz, Calif., Northern Cal, Main Beach, 2009)
5 - Amanda Dowdy (MB, 6-3, Lexington, Texas, Lone Star, Texas Tech, 2008)
6 - Lilla Frederick (OH/L, 5-10, Huntington Beach, Calif., SCVA, Pepperdine, 2008)
7 - Alex Hunt (OH, 6-0, Granger, Ind., Hoosier, Michigan, 2008)
8 - Ashleigh McCord (OH, 6-1, Wylie, Texas, North Texas Region, Rice, 2008)
9 - Sarah Shaw (OH, 6-2, Austin, Texas, Lone Star, Austin Juniors, 2010)
10 – Alexis Olgard (MB, 6-6, Spokane, Wash., Evergreen, Spokane Splash, 2010)
11 - Hayley Spelman (OPP, 6-6, Las Vegas, Nev., SCVA, TCA, 2009)
12 - Mallory Woolridge (MB, 6-3, Henrico, Va., Old Dominion Region, USPAV, 2010)
Head Coach: Paula Weishoff (UC Irvine head coach)
Assistant Coach: John Corbelli (Texas A&M associate head coach)
Assistant Coach: Jim Stone (U.S. Girls’ Youth National Team head coach)
Team Leader: Denise Corlett (Stanford associate head coach)

FIVB Women’s Junior National Pool H Schedule/Results (2nd Round)
July 20: Czech Republic def. USA 20-25, 25-16, 25-13, 21-25, 15-10
July 20: Venezuela vs. Poland, 8 p.m.
July 21: Poland vs. USA, 2 p.m.
July 21: Venezuela vs. Czech Republic, 8 p.m.
July 22: Czech Republic vs. Poland, 4 p.m.
July 22: USA vs. Venezuela, 8 p.m.

Pool H Standings
Czech Republic 1-0
Poland 0-0
Venezuela 0-0
USA 0-1

FIVB Women’s Junior National Pool D Schedule/Results (1st Round)
July 16: Turkey def. Bulgaria 25-21, 19-25, 25-19, 25-10
July 16: Cuba def. USA 25-23, 23-25, 25-22, 25-11
July 17: Bulgaria def. USA 23-25, 25-18, 25-17, 25-17
July 17: Turkey def. Cuba 25-16, 25-15, 25-22
July 18: Bulgaria def. Cuba 25-23, 25-22, 29-27, 25-23
July 18: Turkey def. USA 25-20, 25-20, 25-16

Pool D Standings
Turkey 3-0
Bulgaria 2-1
Cuba 1-2
USA 0-3