U.S. Women Ease Past Japan, Stay Undefeated

Aug. 13, 2011, 7:30 a.m. (ET)

Bill Kauffman
Associate Director, Communications
Phone: 719-228-6800
Email: bill.kauffman@usav.org

Unofficial DataVolley Stats * Official FIVB Stats

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Aug. 13, 2011) - Destinee Hooker (San Antonio, Texas) scored 18 points to lead the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team to a 25-22, 25-14, 25-18 victory over Japan on Saturday evening during Pool H action of the FIVB World Grand Prix in Komaki, Japan.

The U.S., ranked second in the FIVB world ranking and defending FIVB World Grand Prix champions in the premier annual international volleyball tournament, improved to 5-0 in this year’s tournament with 14 pool points through the first five matches of the FIVB World Grand Prix preliminary round. The Americans have now won 16 consecutive FIVB World Grand Prix matches counting the final 11 victories in last year’s event. Japan is now 3-2 overall in the tournament with nine points.

The U.S. concludes Pool H action against Serbia on Aug. 14 at 3 p.m. (11 p.m. Pacific Time on Aug. 13). The U.S. has already defeated Serbia once in this year’s FIVB World Grand Prix, a 25-22, 25-19, 23-25, 20-25, 15-10 victory on Aug. 5 to start the tournament.

The U.S. used a 7-0 scoring run to overcome a 15-12 deficit in the first set to capture a 25-22 victory to start the match. The Americans took control of the second set with a 6-1 spurt to take a 7-3 advantage and jumped the lead to 18-11 after a 5-0 run to cruise to a 25-14 victory. Team USA used a 6-0 scoring run in the third set after holding a slim 18-17 advantage to take a 25-18 victory.

“I was very happy with the team's performance tonight,” U.S. Women’s National Team head Coach Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) said. “I thought we played better than yesterday and that's always our goal, to keep improving. I hope to continue that trend tomorrow against Serbia and focus on their team that presents a different style and rhythm. Today, I thought we did a very good job and in so many phases of the game I thought we were really, really clean. So I was very happy with our team.

Hooker scored her 18 points on 16 kills via 31 errorless attacks, one block and one ace. Jordan Larson (Hooper, Neb.) totaled 11 kills on 28 swings and a team-high three blocks for 14 points. Foluke Akinradewo (Plantation, Fla.) contributed six kills on eight attacks and a block for seven points, while Heather Bown (Yorba Linda, Calif.) charted five kills on 10 attacks and two blocks for seven points. Logan Tom (Salt Lake City, Utah) record three kills and three aces as part of a six-point night. She also provided the U.S. serving runs of seven and six points in the first and third sets, respectively, to allow the Americans to take control.

“I think the USA had a really good match tonight,” U.S. Women’s National Team captain Jennifer Tamas (Milpitas, Calif.) said. “Japan plays a very different style of volleyball from us so it is important for us to focus on USA Volleyball and we took care of some details on our offense and put a great match together. We were good at the service line. Logan (Tom) had some great serves at the end and really showed her leadership. So it was a good win for us.”

Lindsey Berg (Honolulu) turned in 26 assists on 70 set attempts, which helped the Americans to a 46.6 kill percent with 41 kills on 88 attacks leading to a .386 hitting efficiency with only seven attack errors.

“I thought Lindsey got us into a very good side-out rhythm today,” McCutcheon said. “I was very impressed with her choices. Japan made many adjustments and we were able to adjust again and I thought she created attack space.”

Tamas concurred with McCutcheon in regards to Berg’s importance in the match.

“Lindsey's a great setter and also plays great defense, too,” Tamas said. “She gave our hitters a lot of one-on-one situations and really worked hard out there.”

Larson totaled 16 excellent receptions on 33 of the team’s 47 total service receptions. Tom contributed 14 digs, while Nicole Davis (Stockton, Calif.) charted 11 digs.

Team USA’s defense limited Japan to 33 kills in the match as part of a 31.4 kill percent and .124 hitting efficiency. Team USA held a 7-3 advantage in blocks and a 4-2 margin in aces. Japan committed 23 errors in the match, compared to the Americans’ 16 errors. Both teams tallied 44 digs in the match. Japan converted 41.9 percent of its service receptions into excellent passes, just ahead of the Americans’ 40.4 excellent service reception percent.

“I was very impressed with the changes we were able to make in the match because Japan presents you with many different offensive schemes and you have to really pay attention to what's going on and be able to compensate and adjust in the middle of a rally,” McCutcheon said. “I thought we were able to do that. For our team that's a pretty significant evolution from a year ago.”

McCutcheon started Tom and Larson at outside hitter, Akinradewo and Bown at middle blocker, Hooker at opposite and Berg at setter. Davis was the libero for the match.

Saori Sakoda paced Japan with 10 points in the match, but did not play in the third set. Saori Kimura added nine points in the loss.

“Today, we didn't have concentration,” Japan head coach Masayoshi Manabe said. “The USA's serves were excellent and their block was very high and that put a lot of pressure on my players. Our only really good player today was (Saori) Sakoda, and the center players (Erika) Araki and (Mai) Yamaguchi were okay.”

To watch Universal Sports’ video stream of the Team USA versus Japan match, CLICK HERE.

Earlier today in Pool H, Serbia beat Dominican Republic 25-17, 25-20, 25-22. In Pool G at Quanzhou, China, Russia defeated Peru 25-20, 25-17, 25-17 while host China plays Germany later today. In Pool F at Almaty, Kazakhstan, Brazil handled the host Kazakhstan 25-14, 25-18, 25-20 and Italy will face Thailand in the second match of the day. In Pool E at Zielona Gora, Poland, Korea challenges Poland and Cuba faces Argentina later today.

For more information on the U.S. Women’s National Team in the FIVB World Grand Prix, visit the team’s event page at usavolleyball.org/events/7901.

The teams traded the first 12 points of the opening set until Japan scored back-to-back points to take its first lead at 7-6. Japan earned a two-point cushion at 9-7 after a U.S. attack error, then stretched the advantage to 12-9. The U.S. scored four unanswered points to take a 16-15 lead at the second technical timeout with two kills from Hooker around a Larson block and Japan attack error. After the break, Hooker scored a fifth straight U.S. point to establish a 17-15 American lead going into a Japan timeout. Out of the timeout, Japan hit long and Akinradewo pounded a kill for Team USA’s sixth and seventh straight points on Tom’s serve for a 19-15 American lead. The U.S. increased its lead to 22-17 with a Hooker kill and Japan attack error. However, Japan responded with four of the next five points to close the gap to 23-21. The U.S. closed the set at 25-22 with a Larson out-of-system back-row kill. Hooker ended the set with a team-high nine points all on kills, while Larson totaled five points with both blocks in the set. Japan committed eight errors in the set.

The U.S. gained a 4-2 lead in the second set after a Bown block to cap a 3-0 scoring run. Hooker served an ace between kills from Bown and Larson to extend the lead to 7-3. The Americans increased their lead to 12-7 with a Hooker block and Japan attack error. However, Japan answered with two kills and ace to chip away the deficit to 12-10. Hooker slammed a kill and Bown tallied a block after a Japan service error to jump the American lead to 16-11 at the second technical timeout. Larson pounded an overpass for a kill and followed with a traditional kill to extend the lead to 18-11 on the fourth and fifth straight American point on Hooker’s serve. Team USA increased the lead to 23-13 with two kills from Larson and one from Hooker after a Japan service error. Hooker ended the set with a kill at 25-14 after a Japan service error. Larson scored seven points in the second set, while Hooker collected six points. The Americans limited their errors to three in the second set, while Japan committed six errors.

The third set lead switched four times early on and Japan took an 8-7 lead into the first technical timeout. However, the U.S. scored the next two points out of the break with an Akinradewo kill and Japan error to take a 9-8 lead. The Americans increased the margin to 11-9 with a Hooker kill after an Akinradewo block. Japan answered by tying the score at 12-all following a block. Team USA gained a three-point cushion at 15-12 with consecutive kills from Hooker, Bown and Larson leading to a Japan timeout. Japan scored the first two points out of the second technical timeout to close to within one at 16-15. Akinradewo tallied a block and kill on consecutive plays to build a three-point American cushion at 20-17 going into a Japan timeout. Out of the break, Tom served consecutive aces for a fourth and fifth straight USA points at 22-17. Japan hit long and Tom served a third ace in the 6-0 scoring run to put the Americans at set point at 24-17. Hooker ended the set and match with a kill at 25-18. Akinradewo led the Americans in the third set with five points, while Tom tallied four points including all three aces. Japan committed nine errors in the set.

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster for FIVB World Grand Prix Weekend #2
# - Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
4 - Lindsey Berg (S, 5-8, Honolulu, Hawaii, Minnesota) #$
5 - Tamari Miyashiro (L, 5-7, Kaneohe, Hawaii, Washington) #$
6 - Nicole Davis (L, 5-4, Stockton, Calif., Southern California) #$
7 - Heather Bown (MB, 6-3, Yorba Linda, Calif., Hawaii) #$
8 - Alisha Glass (S, 6-0, Leland, Mich., Penn State) #$
9 - Jennifer Tamas (MB, 6-4, Milpitas, Calif., Pacific) #$
10 - Kim Glass (OH, 6-2, Lancaster, Pa., Arizona) #$
11 - Jordan Larson (OH, 6-2, Hooper, Neb., Nebraska) #$
12 - Nancy Metcalf (Opp, 6-1, Hull, Iowa, Nebraska) #$
13 - Christa Harmotto (MB, 6-2, Hopewell, Pa., Penn State) #$
15 - Logan Tom (OH, 6-1, Salt Lake City, Utah, Stanford) $
16 - Foluke Akinradewo (MB, 6-3, Plantation, Fla., Stanford) #$
18 - Megan Hodge (OH, 6-3, Durham, N.C., Penn State) #$
19 - Destinee Hooker (Opp, 6-4, San Antonio, Texas, Texas) #$
KEY: # - Weekend 1 Roster; $ - Weekend 2 Roster; ^ - Weekend 3 Roster; * - Final Round Roster

Head Coach: Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand)
Assistant Coach: Karch Kiraly (San Clemente, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: Paula Weishoff (Irvine, Calif.)
Assistant Coach/Technical Coordinator: Jamie Morrison (Dana Point, Calif.)
Athletic Trainer/Medical Support: Jill Wosmek (Silver Lake, Minn.)
Team Manager: Ken Sullivan

Preliminary Round Standings (Through Aug. 13)
Russia - 15 points, 5-0 record
Brazil - 14 points, 5-0 record
United States - 14 points, 5-0 record
Italy - 13 points, 5-0 record
Serbia - 10 points, 3-2 record
Japan - 9 points, 3-2 record
China - 8 points, 3-2 record
Korea - 8 points, 3-2 record
Poland - 7 points, 2-3 record
Thailand - 6 points, 2-3 record
Cuba - 6 points, 1-4 record
Argentina - 4 points, 2-3 record
Dominican Republic - 3 points, 1-4 record
Germany - 1 points, 0-5 record
Kazakhstan - 1 points, 0-5 record
Peru - 0 points, 0-5 record
NOTE: 3 points awarded for 3-0 or 3-1 win; 2 Points awarded for 3-2 win; 1 Point awarded for 3-2 loss

Pool A at Bydgoszsz, Poland (Luczinczka Hall)
Aug. 5: Poland def. Argentina 25-20, 25-17, 25-22
Aug. 5: Italy def. Dominican Republic 25-18, 22-25, 25-18, 25-17
Aug. 6: Dominican Republic def. Poland 21-25, 25-17, 26-24, 23-25, 18-16
Aug. 6: Italy def. Argentina 25-17, 23-25, 25-20, 25-18
Aug. 7: Italy def. Poland 25-12, 21-25, 26-24, 25-14
Aug. 7: Argentina def. Dominican Republic 20-25, 25-22, 25-19, 23-25, 15-11

Pool B at Nakhonpathom, Thailand (Nakhonpathom Gym)
Aug. 5: Russia def. Cuba 24-26, 25-18, 25-23, 25-20
Aug. 5: Thailand def. Peru 25-20, 25-13, 25-16
Aug. 6: Russia def. Peru 25-12, 25-9, 25-14
Aug. 6: Thailand def. Cuba 23-25, 17-25, 28-26, 25-23, 15-10
Aug. 7: Cuba def. Peru 26-24, 25-19, 25-22
Aug. 7: Russia def. Thailand 25-18, 25-19, 27-25

Pool C at Busan, Korea (Sajik Indoor Gymnasium)
Aug. 5: Brazil def. Japan 25-18, 25-16, 25-21
Aug. 5: Korea def. Germany 25-19, 25-19, 20-25, 25-20
Aug. 6: Japan def. Korea 25-20, 25-21, 25-22
Aug. 6: Brazil def. Germany 25-21, 23-25, 25-15, 25-23
Aug. 7: Brazil def. Korea 25-17, 25-20, 25-22
Aug. 7: Japan def. Germany 25-22, 25-13, 25-19

Pool D at Luohe, China (Luohe Sports Center)
Aug. 5: USA def. Serbia 25-22, 25-19, 23-25, 20-25, 15-10
Aug. 5: China def. Kazakhstan 25-18, 25-23, 25-16
Aug. 6: USA def. Kazakhstan 25-15, 25-21, 25-12
Aug. 6: Serbia def. China 25-21, 23-25, 25-21, 25-18
Aug. 7: USA def. China 25-20, 25-17, 25-16
Aug. 7: Serbia def. Kazakhstan 25-19, 25-15, 25-22

Pool E at Zielona Gora, Poland (Sortowo Widowiskowa Hall)
Aug. 12: Poland def. Argentina 25-20, 25-20, 25-23
Aug. 12: Korea def. Cuba 17-25, 25-16, 25-17, 23-25, 15-12
Aug. 13: Korea def. Poland 25-21, 34-32, 25-23
Aug. 13: Argentina def. Cuba 25-19, 15-25, 20-25, 25-18, 16-14
Aug. 14: Poland vs. Cuba, 3:30 p.m.
Aug. 14: Korea vs. Argentina, 6 p.m.

Pool F at Almaty Kazakhstan (Baluan Sholak Sports Palace)
Aug. 12: Italy def. Kazakhstan 22-25, 22-25, 25-18, 25-19, 15-12
Aug. 12: Brazil def. Thailand 25-16, 25-23, 25-16
Aug. 13: Brazil def. Kazakhstan 25-14, 25-18, 25-20
Aug. 13: Italy def. Thailand 24-26, 19-25, 25-22, 25-15, 15-12
Aug. 14: Kazakhstan vs. Thailand, 3:15 p.m.
Aug. 14: Italy vs. Brazil, 6 p.m.

Pool G at Quanzhou, China (Straits Sports Center Quanzhou)
Aug. 12: Russia def. Germany 25-18, 25-19, 25-21
Aug. 12: China def. Peru 25-16, 25-20, 25-13
Aug. 13: Russia def. Peru 25-20, 25-17, 25-17
Aug. 13: China def. Germany 14-25, 22-25, 25-23, 25-21, 18-16
Aug. 14: Peru vs. Germany, 4 p.m.
Aug. 14: China vs. Russia, 7:30 p.m.

Pool H at Komaki, Japan (Park Arena Komaki)
Aug. 12: USA def. Dominican Republic 25-22, 25-22, 25-10
Aug. 12: Japan def. Serbia 25-16, 25-21, 17-25, 25-21
Aug. 13: Serbia def. Dominican Republic 25-17, 25-20, 25-22
Aug. 13: USA def. Japan 25-22, 25-14, 25-18
Aug. 14: Japan def. Dominican Republic 25-22, 26-24, 23-25, 25-20
Aug. 14: USA vs. Serbia, 3 p.m.

Pool I at Hong Kong (Hong Kong Coliseum)
Aug. 19: Kazakhstan vs. Poland, 7 p.m.
Aug. 19: China vs. Dominican Republic, 9:30 p.m.
Aug. 20: Dominican Republic vs. Poland, 3 p.m.
Aug. 20: China vs. Kazakhstan, 9:30 p.m.
Aug. 21: Dominican Republic vs. Kazakhstan, 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 21: China vs. Poland, 8 p.m.

Pool J at Hong Kong (Hong Kong Coliseum)
Aug. 19: Italy vs. Peru, 1 p.m.
Aug. 19: USA vs. Germany, 3 p.m.
Aug. 20: Germany vs. Peru, 1 p.m.
Aug. 20: USA vs. Italy, 7 p.m.
Aug. 21: USA vs. Peru, 11 a.m.
Aug. 21: Germany vs. Italy, 1 p.m.

Pool K at Bangkok, Thailand (Keelawes 1)
Aug. 19: Cuba vs. Brazil, 2 p.m.
Aug. 19: Thailand vs. Argentina, 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 20: Brazil vs. Argentina, 2 p.m.
Aug. 20: Cuba vs. Thailand, 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 21: Argentina vs. Cuba, 3 p.m.
Aug. 21: Brazil vs. Thailand, 5:30 p.m.

Pool L at Tokyo, Japan (Ariake Coliseum)
Aug. 19: Russia vs. Korea, 3 p.m.
Aug. 19: Japan vs. Serbia, 6 p.m.
Aug. 20: Russia vs. Serbia, 3 p.m.
Aug. 20: Japan vs. Korea, 6 p.m.
Aug. 21: Serbia vs. Korea, 3 p.m.
Aug. 21: Japan vs. Russia, 6 p.m.