U.S. Women Open FIVB World Grand Prix with Win

Aug. 06, 2010, 2:16 p.m. (ET)

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

U.S. Press Kit for FIVB World Grand Prix

Unofficial DataVolley Stats - Official FIVB Stats

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Aug. 6, 2010) – Destinee Hooker (San Antonio, Texas) collected a match-high 17 points as the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team opened the 18th FIVB World Grand Prix with a 26-24, 22-25, 25-14, 25-19 victory over NORCECA-rival Dominican Republic on Friday evening in Gdynia, Poland.

Team USA, currently ranked fourth in the FIVB world rankings, challenges Germany on Saturday at 10:15 a.m. Pacific Time in its next FIVB World Grand Prix Pool B match. The U.S. concludes the preliminary round weekend against host Poland on Aug. 8 at 7:15 a.m. Pacific Time.

The U.S. trailed 18-13 in the opening set and was down 24-20, but a double-switch putting Hooker into the lineup provided the U.S. offense at the net leading to a 26-24 come-from-behind victory. Like the first set, Team USA trailed 18-13 in the second set and came back to within one at 22-21 only to have Dominican Republic hold on for a 25-22 victory. In the third set, the U.S. never fell behind more than two points early and used a 14-4 run to end the set – including the final seven points in a row – for a 25-14 victory. Team USA bolted to a 7-0 lead in the fourth set and scored five of the final six points of the set, but needed to weather a Dominican Republic rally that put it within two at 20-18.

“Obviously we are happy to win,” U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) said. “The good thing for us was that we had a lot of young players from the bench playing today. We want to create the new generation, so I am glad that we checked new players. It is good that we won 3-1, we gained three points.”

Hooker, playing her first official match with the U.S. Women’s National Team in international competition, scored 12 kills on 33 swings, four blocks and an ace for her 17 points. Foluke Akinradewo (Plantation, Fla.) added 11 kills on 23 attempts and a match-high five blocks for 16 points. Both Hooker and Akinradewo limited their errors to just two in the match. Megan Hodge (Durham, N.C.) chipped in 12 kills, a block and an ace for 14 points. Jordan Larson (Hooper, Neb.) charted six kills and five blocks for 11 points. Heather Bown (Yorba Linda, Calif.) followed with nine points via seven kills on 16 attempts, an ace and a block. Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich.) contributed two aces and a block for three points, while Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio) and Nellie Spicer (Barrington, Ill.) rounded out the scoring with a kill apiece.

Nicole Davis (Stockton, Calif.) charted 35 digs and eight excellent receptions on 26 attempts in the four-set victory, while Glass added 16 digs. Hodge and Hooker chipped in 14 digs apiece. Glass provided 28 running sets, while Spicer added nine running sets in the first set. Larson had a team-high 10 excellent receptions on 25 attempts to go with 12 digs.

“It is always four or five set games with Dominican Republic, so we knew it would be a challenge,” U.S. Women’s National Team Captain Jennifer Tamas (Milpitas, Calif.) said. “We are happy with the result, it was a good start. When we were ahead in the fourth set and then the Dominicans almost tied the score, it was because of the great performance by their team.”

McCutcheon started Larson and Hodge at outside hitter, Akinradewo and Bown at middle blocker, Fawcett at opposite and Spicer at setter. Davis was the designated libero for the match. Hooker and Glass started the final three sets after subbing in the first set. Cynthia Barboza (Long Beach, Calif.) was a sub in all four sets.

The U.S. held a dominating advantage at the net with a 17-9 block margin to go with a 52-44 kill advantage. Both teams charted three aces in the match. Team USA gave away 24 points on errors, while Dominican Republic gave its victors 26 points on errors. The Americans held a 115-106 dig advantage.

Prisilla Rivera Brens led Dominican Republic with 15 points, while Altagracia Mambru added 12 points. Dahiana Burgos Herrera charted 10 points in the loss.

“To lose is always bad, but I am pretty happy about this game,” Dominican Republic Head Coach Marcos Kwiek said. “It is always exciting to play against USA. It is a good challenge every time. I have a lot of young players. We need to keep fighting to improve day by day. We played very good first and second sets. The Americans made changes in the third one, in blocking. Other elements were equal, the problem was blocking. It happens all the time during the transition process in the team.”

Next week the U.S. squad travels to Bangkok, Thailand, for the second preliminary round weekend and will challenge Italy on Aug. 13, Thailand on Aug. 14 and Puerto Rico on Aug. 15. The U.S. concludes pool play in Hong Kong with matches against Germany on Aug. 20, Thailand on Aug. 21 and China on Aug. 22.

Volleyball fans across the world will be able to watch three FIVB World Grand prix matches a week as FIVB TV announced on Aug. 5 that it will stream matches on the Internet. One match per day from the three preliminary rounds as well as all matches form the Final Round will be streamed live on http://www.laola1.tv/en/int/fivb/video/203---.html. USA matches will be shown twice during the World Grand Prix, including the Aug. 13 match against Italy and the Aug. 22 match versus China. This weekend’s matches on FIVB TV are Poland versus Germany on Aug. 6, Thailand versus China on Aug. 7 and Brazil versus Italy on Aug. 8.

In addition, fans can watch all three USA matches this weekend live on Universal Sports (www.universalsports.com), while the next six matches played in Thailand and Hong Kong will be available tape delayed for same-day coverage. Selected matches will also be shown on Universal’s television channel. All matches will be on-demand after they take place. To find out if Universal is in your home area and its daily schedule, click here.

For more information the FIVB World Grand Prix, click here. For more information on the U.S. Women's National Team, visit its home page by clicking here.

Akinradewo traded points with the Dominicans as she had a kill and two blocks at 3-all, then a Dominican error gave the U.S. its first lead at 4-3. The teams traded points again until Dominican Republic gained an 11-9 advantage on three consecutive points leading to a timeout. Dominican Republic added to its lead with a point out of the break at 12-9. Dominican Republic extended its margin to four points at 14-10 after an errant USA attack. Trailing 18-13, the U.S. rattled off three straight points with kills from Larson and Akinradewo after a Dominican Republic service error to close the gap to 18-16. Hodge nailed consecutive kills to slice the U.S. gap to one at 20-19. Dominican Republic regained a four-point cushion at 23-19 on a service winner and kill. A key double-switch putting Hooker in the front row provided immediate offense for the U.S. After a Dominican Republic error on set points 24-20, Hodge cut the deficit to 24-22 with an ace. The U.S. moved to within one at 24-23 with a Hooker kill. The U.S. saved its fourth set point with a Hooker block and took the lead on a Larson block at 25-24. The U.S. capped its comeback at 26-24 after a Dominican Republic error. Akinradewo and Hodge had five points in the first set and the U.S. benefited from 10 Dominican Republic errors. Team USA had five blocks in the opening set.

The U.S. took a 3-1 lead in the second set on a Hooker kill and Akinradewo block. The Americans increased their advantage to 7-4 on a Larson kill and Dominican Republic error. However, Dominican Republic inched to within one point following an ace at 9-8, then tied the set at 10-all and gained the lead at 12-11. Dominican Republic increased its advantage to 13-11 on an ace. The U.S. tied the set at 13-all and Hooker ace, but Dominican Republic recovered with three straight points to gain a 16-13 lead at the second technical timeout. Dominican Republic extended its lead out of the break to 18-13 with back-to-back points as part of an overall 5-0 scoring run. The U.S. broke the run with a Bown kill and Glass block at 18-15. Team USA continued to climb back into the match with a Larson kill and Bown ace at 19-17. Dominican Republic resumed a three-point margin at 20-17 after a U.S. error. Akinradewo turned in consecutive kills to whittle the deficit to 21-19. Hodge followed an Akinradewo block with a kill to slice the deficit to a single point at 22-21. Dominican Republic reached set point at 24-22, and unlike the first set, did not waste any in winning 25-22. Akinradewo had a team-high five points in the second set in which the U.S. had three blocks and two aces. However, Dominican Republic benefited from eight U.S. errors and limited its own to four.

Dominican Republic earned the first two-point cushion of the third set at 6-4. The U.S. tied the set at 6-all with points from Bown and Larson. Team USA went into the first technical timeout leading 8-7 after a Dominican Republic service error and Akinradewo kill. The U.S. increased its lead to 13-10 after consecutive Akinradewo blocks. Hooker added another block and Hodge slammed a kill to move the advantage to 15-10. After two Dominican points, the U.S. went into the second technical timeout leading 16-12. Team USA pushed its margin to six points at 20-14 after a Dominican Republic error. After a Dominican Republic timeout, Larson put up a block and kill to stretch the lead to 22-14. Hooker followed with a power kill to yield a 23-14 advantage. The U.S. continued its scoring run all the way to 25-14 ending on a 7-0 scoring run and Bown kill. Hodge, Larson and Hooker all had four points in the third set. The U.S. had five blocks in the set and limited its errors to four.

The U.S. bolted to a 4-0 lead in the fourth set as Larson had a block and kill around a Dominican Republic error, followed by a Hoooker back-row kill. Out of a Dominican Republic timeout, Hooker blasted two kills and put up a block at 7-0. Dominican scored two consecutive points before the U.S. reached the first technical timeout with an 8-2 advantage. Team USA inched its lead to 11-4 on a Hooker kill and Dominican Republic error. Dominican Republic moved to within three at 11-8 with two aces around two kills. Consecutive Dominican Republic errors gave the U.S. a 15-10 lead, then it crept to within two at 18-20 on a U.S. error. Hodge slammed a back-row kill after a Dominican Republic error to put the U.S. in front by four at 22-18. Akinradewo nailed a kill and put up a block giving the U.S. match points at 24-19, then slammed an overpass for a kill at 25-19. Hooker collected seven points in the fourth set and the U.S. gained four more blocks in the period.

U.S. Women’s National Team Preliminary Roster for FIVB World Grand Prix
# - Name (Pos, Ht, Hometown, College)
1 - Ogonna Nnamani (OPP, 6-1, Bloomington, Ill., Stanford)
2 - Alisha Glass (S, 6-0, Leland, Mich., Penn State)
5 - Stacy Sykora (L, 5-10, Burleson, Texas, Texas A&M)
6 - Nicole Davis (L, 5-4, Stockton, Calif., Southern California)
7 - Heather Bown (MB, 6-3, Yorba Linda, Calif., Hawaii)
8 - Cynthia Barboza (OH, 6-0, Long Beach, Calif., Stanford)
9 - Jennifer Tamas (MB, 6-4, Milpitas, Calif., Pacific)
11 - Jordan Larson (OH, 6-2, Hooper, Neb., Nebraska)
14 - Nicole Fawcett (OPP, 6-4, Zanesfield, Ohio, Penn State)
16 - Foluke Akinradewo (MB, 6-3, Plantation, Fla., Stanford)
17 - Nellie Spicer (S, 5-9, Barrington, Ill., UCLA)
18 - Megan Hodge (OH, 6-3, Durham, N.C., Penn State)
19 - Destinee Hooker (OPP, 6-4, San Antonio, Texas, Texas)

Head Coach: Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand)
Assistant Coach: Karch Kiraly (San Clemente, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: Jim Stone (Columbus, Ohio)
Technical Coordinator: Jamie Morrison (Dana Point, Calif.)
Athletic Trainer/Medical Support: Jill Wosmek (Silver Lake, Minn.)
Team Leader for Poland/Thailand: Reed Sunahara (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Team Leader for Hong Kong/Japan: Laurel Iversen (Kalaheo, Hawaii)

2010 FIVB World Grand Prix Schedule

Pool A (Sao Carlos, Brazil * Ginasio Nilton Olaio Filho)
Aug. 6: Brazil vs. Chinese Taipei, 9:20 a.m.
Aug. 6: Italy vs. Japan, 1 p.m.
Aug. 7: Brazil vs. Japan, 10 a.m.
Aug. 7: Chinese Taipei vs. Italy, 1 p.m.
Aug. 8: Brazil vs. Italy, 9:30 a.m.
Aug. 8: Japan vs. Chinese Taipei, 1 p.m.

Pool B (Gdynia, Poland * Gdynia Competition Hall)
Aug. 6: USA def. Dominican Republic 26-24, 22-25, 25-14, 25-19
Aug. 6: Poland vs. Germany, 8 p.m.
Aug. 7: Poland vs. Dominican Republic, 4:15 p.m.
Aug. 7: USA vs. Germany, 7:15 p.m.
Aug. 8: USA vs. Poland, 4:15 p.m.
Aug. 8: Germany vs. Dominican Republic, 7:15 p.m.

Pool C (Chengdu, China * Sichuan Provincial Sports Bureau)
Aug. 6: Netherlands vs. Thailand, 4 p.m.
Aug. 6: China vs. Puerto Rico, 7:30 p.m.
Aug. 7: Puerto Rico vs. Netherlands, 4 p.m.
Aug. 7: Thailand vs. China, 7:30 p.m.
Aug. 8: China vs. Netherlands, 4 p.m.
Aug. 8: Thailand vs. Puerto Rico, 7:30 p.m.

Pool D (Bangkok, Thailand * Keelawes 2)
Aug. 13: USA vs. Italy, 3 p.m.
Aug. 13: Thailand vs. Puerto Rico, 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 14: Puerto Rico vs. Italy, 2 p.m.
Aug. 14: USA vs. Thailand, 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 15: USA vs. Puerto Rico, 3 p.m.
Aug. 15: Italy vs. Thailand, 5:30 p.m.

Pool E (Macau, China * Forum de Macau)
Aug. 13: Brazil vs. Dominican Republic, 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 13: China vs. Netherlands, 9 p.m.
Aug. 14: Brazil vs. Netherlands, 2 p.m.
Aug. 14: China vs. Dominican Republic, 4:30 p.m.
Aug. 15: Netherlands vs. Dominican Republic, 1 p.m.
Aug. 15: China vs. Brazil, 3:30 p.m.

Pool F (Okayama, Japan * Okayama Momotaro Arena)
Aug. 13: Chinese Taipei vs. Poland, 3 p.m.
Aug. 13: Japan vs. Germany, 6 p.m.
Aug. 14: Germany vs. Chinese Taipei, 2 p.m.
Aug. 14: Japan vs. Poland, 5 p.m.
Aug. 15: Germany vs. Poland, 2 p.m.
Aug. 15: Japan vs. Chinese Taipei, 5 p.m.

Pool G (Hong Kong, China * Hong Kong Coliseum)
Aug. 20: USA vs. Germany, 3 p.m.
Aug. 20: China vs. Thailand, 8 p.m.
Aug. 21: USA vs. Thailand, 1:15 p.m.
Aug. 21: China vs. Germany, 3:45 p.m.
Aug. 22: Germany vs. Thailand, 1:15 p.m.
Aug. 22: USA vs. China, 3:45 p.m.

Pool H (Taipei, Chinese Taipei * Taiwan University Gym)
Aug. 20: Brazil vs. Puerto Rico, 3:30 p.m.
Aug. 20: Poland vs. Chinese Taipei, 7 p.m.
Aug. 21: Puerto Rico vs. Poland, 2:30 p.m.
Aug. 21: Chinese Taipei vs. Brazil, 4:30 p.m.
Aug. 22: Brazil vs. Poland, 2:30 p.m.
Aug. 22: Chinese Taipei vs. Puerto Rico, 4:30 p.m.

Pool I (Tokyo, Japan * Yoyogi National Stadium)
Aug. 20: Italy vs. Netherlands, 3:30 p.m.
Aug. 20: Japan vs. Dominican Republic, 6:30 p.m.
Aug. 21: Dominican Republic vs. Netherlands, 2 p.m.
Aug. 21: Japan vs. Italy, 7 p.m.
Aug. 22: Dominican Republic vs. Italy, 2 p.m.
Aug. 22: Japan vs. Netherlands, 5 p.m.

Final Round (Ningbo, China * Ningbo Beilun Gymnasium)
Aug. 25-29: Teams TBA