B.J. Hoeptner Evans
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: (719) 228-6800
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (April 15, 2010) – U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team player Andy Hein will be honored Friday (April 16) at his high school, West Chicago (Ill.) Community High School on Friday.
As part of the presentation, Hein (Carol Stream, Ill.) will have his national team jersey hanging in a frame outside the school’s gymnasium.
“It’s something my high school coach (Kris Hasty) has been talking about for a couple of years now and it is finally coming to fruition,” said Hein, who helped the team reach the state tournament twice before graduating in 2002.
“I remember that from the time I was a freshman to the time I was a senior I was a completely different player,” Hein said. “I didn’t start playing volleyball until high school, so there was a steep learning curve. It was a lot of fun and a great thing to be a part of.”
Hein, a 6-11 middle blocker, reports that he is 95 percent recovered from offseason knee surgery and is looking forward to returning to the U.S. National Team Center within the American Sports Centers in Anaheim, Calif., when the summer training block begins on May 3.
Hein and David Lee (Alpine, Calif.) started at middle blocker during most of the 2009 FIVB World League in the absence of Ryan Millar (Alpine, Utah), who was taking the summer off from indoor competition. However, the middle blocker position on the U.S. 22-man roster for 2010 is stacked with Hein, Millar, Lee, Tom Hoff (Park Ridge, Ill.), Russell Holmes (Fountain Valley, Calif.) and Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio).
Three players will be cut from the roster at the end of April. Then U.S. Head Coach Alan Knipe will choose 12-14 players from the remaining 19 to compete with the team each World League weekend from June 4-July 11.
“I love competing, so it’s all fun for me,” Hein said. “I’m really looking forward to playing with and against Ryan, David, Russell and the rest of that group. Middle blocker is probably the position where we are deepest.”
Fenerbahce, the Turkish team of Gabe Gardner (San Clemente, Calif.), is one match away from winning the league playoffs, but it has not been easy. The team’s last three matches have all gone five sets.
Fenerbahce secured a spot in the playoff finals with a 3-2 (25-22, 18-25, 28-30, 26-24, 15-7) semifinal victory over Arkas Spor on April 9. Gardner led all scorers in the match with 24 points on 21 kill and three blocks. He converted 47 percent of his kill attempts into points.
The team won its first match in the final round with a comeback victory over Ziraat Bankasi, 3-2 (19-25, 23-25, 25-20, 25-17, 18-16) on April 12. Gardner finished with 14 points on 13 kills and one block. His kill percentage was 0.43.
On April 15, the team won its second match, 3-2 (25-21, 20-25, 25-21, 25-27, 15-13).
Two Russian Super League teams with U.S. players are competing in the playoff semifinals in Russia.
Zenit Kazan, featuring Lloy Ball (Fort Wayne, Ind.) and Clay Stanley (Honolulu, Hawaii), will face Dynamo Moscow in a best-of-five playoff starting on April 22. After that, matches are scheduled for April 23, April 27, April 28 and May 2.
Lokomotiv Novosibirsk, the Russian team of David Lee (Alpine, Calif.) and Reid Priddy (Richmond, Va.), will play Lokomotiv-Belogorie starting April 23. After that, matches are scheduled for April 24, April 28, April 29 and May 3.
Southern California Scrimmages
The U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team is holding two intersquad scrimmages in Southern California in May.
On May 15, the team will scrimmage at 7:30 p.m. at JSerra Catholic High School, 26351 Junipero Serra Road in San Juan Capistrano.
On May 21, the team will scrimmage at 7:30 p.m. at the Walter Pyramid at 1250 North Bellflower Blvd., in Long Beach.
Tickets are $10 for adults, $7 for kids and seniors and LBSU students will get in free. Tickets are available at the Walter Pyramid box office or online at www.longbeachstate.com.
Vivo/Minas, the Brazilian league team featuring Riley Salmon (League City, Texas), has been eliminated from the playoffs after losing in the quarterfinals to Sada Cruzeiro Volei.
On April 8, Sada Cruzeiro Volei defeated Vivo/Minas, 25-20, 25-20, 25-17. Salmon scored five points and had 10 excellent receptions on 19 attempts.
On April 11, Sada Cruzeiro Volei beat Vivo/Minas, 25-23, 25-23, 25-20. Salmon had four points and 11 excellent receptions on 16 attempts.
Poitiers, the French League team of Paul Lotman (Lakewood, Calif.), finished fourth in the regular season of France’s Ligue A and is now in the playoff quarterfinals.
In its first playoff match on April 14, Poitiers swept Beauvais, 25-23, 25-23, 25-19. Lotman scored 15 points on 12 kills and three blocks. The teams will play again on April 17.
Ball’s E-Book Now Available
Lloy Ball’s biography, The Biggest Mistake I Never Made, is now available for download.
The book details the life and career of Ball, a four-time Olympian, including his experience in Beijing when the U.S. Men won the gold medal at the Olympic Games.
The E-book costs $9.95. For more information, click here.
The NET Live
The NET Live is an Internet radio show hosted by former U.S. Men’s Team player and two-time Olympian Kevin Barnett along with current team member, two-time Olympian and 2008 gold medalist Reid Priddy.
The show is usually broadcast at 10 a.m. PT on Mondays and features interviews with a variety of volleyball personalities along with banter by the two hosts and sidekick/engineer Dan “Kinda Good” Madden.
Click here to listen to the show.
You can also download the podcast from iTunes by clicking here.
Matt Anderson (Penn States), Sean Rooney (Pepperdine), Rich Lambourne (BYU), Andy Hein (Pepperdine), Ryan Millar (BYU), Jayson Jablonsky (UC Irvine), Max Holt (Penn State) and Russell Holmes (was a red-shirt freshman with the 2004 BYU team that won the championship).