U.S. Women’s Weekly Update for March 14

March 14, 2011, 9:08 p.m. (ET)

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

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 14, 2011) – The current U.S. Women's National Team Weekly update released on March 14 includes briefs on U.S. players competing overseas and other team news.

U.S. WOMEN’S TRAINING GROUP SCHEDULES INTRASQUAD SCRIMMAGE: The U.S. Women’s National Training Team will play in two intrasquad scrimmages in Southern California on March 16 and March 17. The first scrimmage will take place on March 16 at Tstreet Volleyball Club’s new facility located at 1 Autry in Irvine, Calif. The match will start at 7 p.m. Pacific Time. The second scrimmage is set 6 p.m. Pacific Time on March 17 at Irvine Valley College in Irvine, Calif. Both contests are open to the public free of charge. For the first scrimmage, Team Red will consist of setter Jenna Hagglund (West Chester, Ohio), outside hitters Cassidy Lichtman (Poway, Calif.) and Juliann Faucette (San Diego), middle blockers Dominique Olowolafe (Lansing, Mich.) and Ashley Benson (Bloomington, Ind.), opposite Kinrda Carlson (Eaton, Colo.) and liberos Ellie Blankenship (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) and Cami Croteau (Orange, Calif.). Team Blue will consist of setter Carli Lloyd (Bonsall, Calif.), outside hitters Kaitlin Sather (Santa Rosa, Calif.), Kari Pestolesi (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and Julianne Piggott (Newport Beach, Calif.), opposite Becky Perry (Austin, Texas), middle blockers Naomi Johnson (Bloomington, Minn.) and Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minn.), and libero Kayla Banwarth (Dubuque, Iowa). The rosters for the Blue and Red Teams may be adjusted for the second scrimmage following the March 16 scrimmage. The U.S. Women’s National Training Team is currently in its winter training block, which started Jan. 17 and runs through mid-April at the American Sports Centers in Anaheim, Calif.

U.S. WOMEN’S TRAINING BLOCK ROSTER: The U.S. Women’s National Team is holding its winter training block from Jan. 17 to mid-April at the American Sports Centers in Anaheim, Calif. The U.S. Women’s National Training Team roster currently has numbers 15 players training. In addition, Juliann Faucette (San Diego) is training with the group between March 14 and March 18. The training roster includes setters Carli Lloyd (Bonsall, Calif.), Jenna Hagglund (West Chester, Ohio) and Cassidy Lichtman (Poway, Calif.); middle blockers Ashley Benson (Bloomington, Ind.), Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minn.), Naomi Johnson (Bloomington, Minn.) and Dominique Olowolafe (Lansing, Mich.); outside hitters Becky Perry (Austin, Texas), Kari Pestolesi (Huntington Beach, Calif.), Julianne Piggott (Newport Beach, Calif.) and Kaitlin Sather (Santa Rosa, Calif.); opposite Kindra Carlson (Eaton, Colo.); and liberos Kayla Banwarth (Dubuque, Iowa), Ellie Blankenship (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) and Cami Croteau (Orange, Calif.). Pestolesi will also see training time at libero. Additional players may be added to the roster during the course of the training block.

AKINRADEWO WITH TOYOTA IN JAPAN: Foluke Akinradewo (Plantation, Fla.), a middle blocker with the U.S. Women’s National Team, is playing for Toyota Autobody in Japan’s V-League for the 2010-11 professional season. Toyota is now 12-14 on the season and in fifth place in the V-League. After the 9.0 earthquake that struck Japan on March 11 and the aftermath of the tsunami, the V-League has opted to suspend the rest of the regular season and playoff rounds.

TOM WITH GUANGDONG HENGDA IN CHINA UNDER FORMER U.S. HEAD COACH: Three-time U.S. Olympian Logan Tom (Salt Lake City, Utah) is playing for Guangdong Hengda (also known as Evergrande) in the Chinese club league’s top division. Evergrande, led by 2008 U.S. Olympic Games head coach “Jenny” Lang Ping, is on a seven-match win streak following a 25-18, 25-18, 25-23 victory over August Keming (9-8) on March 12. In the win over Zhengzhou High Tech Zone, Tom scored seven kills, two blocks and two aces for 11 points in the victory. Evergrande will meet Tianjin on March 15 in a battle of league leaders. Both teams are 15-2 on the season, but Evergrande holds a 46-43 point advantage for the league leader.

BERG, HODGE WITH VILLA CORTESE IN ITALY: U.S. Women’s National Team setter Lindsey Berg (Honolulu) and Megan Hodge (Durham, N.C.) are competing for MC-Carnaghi Villa Cortese in the Italian Serie A league during the 2010-11 professional club season. In Italian Serie A action, Villa Cortese (11-4, 31 points) slipped past fourth-place Asystel Volley Novara (9-6, 29 points) 27-25, 25-19, 12-25, 27-25 on March 13. Hodge contributed 22 points with 21 kills on 54 swings and an ace. She also produced a 100 percent positive service reception on three attempts. Berg started the first two sets in which Villa Cortese converted 40.2 percent of its attacks into points. Villa Cortese, now in third place despite having the most match victories along with Bergamo in the league standings, faces eighth-place Florens Castellana Grotte (6-9, 18 points) on March 20.

HARMOTTO WITH LIU-JO VOLLEY MODENA IN ITALY: U.S. Women’s National Team middle blocker Christa Harmotto (Hopewell, Pa.) is playing for LIU-JO Volley Modena in Italy’s Serie A League during the 2010-11 professional club season. After a lengthy stint away from the team rehabilitating an injury, Harmotto returned to the court for the first time on March 13 and helped Modena to a 29-27, 25-21, 19-25, 23-25, 15-10 victory over sixth-place Chateau d’Ax Urbino Volley (9-6, 25 points). In a starting role, she provided seven kills on 16 attacks and three blocks for 10 points. Harmotto also served a team-high 26 times during the match leading to several points. Modena (5-10, 15 points), who slipped to 10th place in the league standings without Harmotto in the lineup, will play fourth-place Yamamay Busto Arsizio (9-6, 29 points) on March 20 in its next Serie A match.

PAOLINI WITH NOVARA IN ITALY: Lauren Paolini (Ann Arbor, Mich.), a middle blocker on the U.S. Women’s National Team, is competing this professional season in Italy with Asystel Volley Novara of the Italian Serie A Division. On March 13, Novara dropped a 27-25, 25-19, 12-25, 27-25 match to third-place MC-Carnaghi Villa Cortese (11-4, 31 points). Paolini charted 10 kills on 16 attacks with a block for 11 total points. Novara, now tied for second place in the Italian Serie A with 29 points, plays sixth-place Spes Conegliano (9-6, 25 points) on March 13 in its next match.

HOOKER WITH ITALY’S PESARO: Destinee Hooker (San Antonio, Texas), who played her first season with the U.S. Women’s National Team in 2010, is currently competing for Scavolini Pesaro of the Italian Serie A League. In the Italian Serie A league, Hooker was not available in the team’s 25-20, 21-25, 25-18, 25-18 victory over Florens Castellana Grotte (6-9, 18 points) on March 13. Pesaro is currently 10-5 on the season and in second place with 32 points. The team will face Chateaux d’Ax Urbino Volley, originally slated for March 20, on April 6 due to the team’s participation in the CEV Champions League semifinals. In CEV Champions League action, Pesaro is slated to face Azerbaijan’s Rabita Baku in the first semifinal played on March 19, with the winner playing either Fenerbahce or VakiGunes Telekom of Turkey in the championship match on March 20.

MORRISON, SIX AMERICANS ON ONE AUSTRIAN TEAM: U.S. Women’s National Team Assistant Coach Jamie Morrison (Dana Point, Calif.) is serving as head coach of the Austrian Post Schwechat team during the 2010-11 season. The team has six American players including Jill Collymore (Seattle), Alexis Crimes (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), Jessica Jones (Naperville, Ill.), Tamari Miyashiro (Kaneohe, Hawaii), Angie Pressey (Lake Mary, Fla.) and Courtney Thompson (Kent, Wash.). Post Schwechat competes in the Middle European Volleyball Zonal Association (teams from Czech Republic, Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia and Croatia). Post Schwechat is nearing the completion of its 2010-11 season and is taking part in the Austrian Bundesliga semifinal round versus Tirol. In the March 12 match, Post Schwechat defeated Tirol 25-9, 25-20, 25-9. Crimes scored 11 points with nine kills on 10 errorless attacks to go with a block and ace. Pressey, who played in just the first set, scored four kills on five errorless attacks with a block for five points. Thompson set the squad in the first two sets leading to a 46.3 kill percent and .352 hitting efficiency. Miyashiro charted a 71 percent positive service reception on 17 chances. The teams will meet again on March 19 and March 23.

KIM GLASS WITH RABITA BAKU IN AZERBAIJAN: Kim Glass (Lancaster, Pa.), a 2008 Olympic Games silver medalist with the U.S. Women’s National Team, is competing for Rabita Baku of the Azerbaijan professional league in 2010-11. By finishing first in the regular season, Igtisadchi received a quarterfinal round bye of the Azerbaijan Super League playoffs, which just completed its first match of a best-of-three series this past weekend. In the CEV Champions League, Rabita has advanced to the semifinal final round and will face Italy’s Scavolini Pesaro on March 19 in Istanbul, Turkey. The semifinal winner will challenge either Fenerbahce or VakiGunes Telekom of Turkey in the championship match on March 20.

TAMAS WITH AZERRAIL BAKU: Jennifer Tamas (Milpitas, Calif.), a 2008 Olympic Games silver medalist playing middle blocker for Team USA, is playing for Azerrail Baku of the Azerbaijan Super during the 2010-11 professional club season. Azerrail, the third seed in the Azerbaijan Super League playoffs, defeated Shirvan 25-11, 25-13, 25-14 in the first match of the best-of-three quarterfinal round. The second match will take place on March 24. In CEV GM Capital Challenge Cup action, Azerrail has advanced to the semifinal round and will face Russia’s Uralochka-NTMK Ekaterinburg in a home-and-home series played on March 15 and March 19.

IGTISADCHI LOADED WITH AMERICANS IN AZERBAIJAN: Two-time Olympian and 2008 Olympic silver medalist Tayyiba Haneef-Park (Laguna Hills, Calif.) is playing for Igtisadchi of the Azerbaijan Super League. By finishing second in the regular season, Igtisadchi received a quarterfinal round bye of the Azerbaijan Super League playoffs, which just completed its first match of a best-of-three series this past weekend. In CEV GM Capital Challenge Cup action, Igtisadchi has advanced to the semifinal round to play country rival Lokomotiv Baku in a home-and-home series contested March 16 and March 20.

DAVIS, METCALF, RICHARDS HEADLINE LOKOMOTIV BAKU IN AZERBAIJAN: U.S. Olympians Nicole Davis (Stockton, Calif.) and Nancy Metcalf (Hull, Iowa), along with 2008 U.S. Olympic Team alternate Kristin Richards (Orem, Utah), are playing for Lokomotiv Baku of the Azerbaijan Super League. Lokomotiv, as the fourth seed in the Azerbaijan Super League playoffs, defeated Baki 25-19, 25-21, 25-15 in the first of a best-of-three series in the quarterfinal round. The second match will be played on March 24. In the CEV GM Capital Challenge Cup, Lokomotiv has advanced to the semifinal round to play country rival Igtisadchi Baku in a home-and-home series contested March 16 and March 20.

SPICER WITH POLAND’S GCB CENTROSTAL BYDGOSZCZ: Nellie Spicer (Barrington, Ill.), a setter for the U.S. Women’s National Team, is competing in the Polish professional league this winter for GCB Centrostal Bydgoszrcz. Spicer’s side lost to league-leader Bank BPS Muszynianka Fakro 25-23, 25-16, 21-25, 25-17 on March 13. Bydgosrzcz, now 9-6 on the season and in fourth place, was able to score points on 27 percent of its attacks and was out-blocked 15-8. Bydgosrzcz returns to action on March 18 against third-place TAURON MKS Dapbrowa Gornicza (8-7).

SYKORA, ALISHA GLASS SETTING TABLES FOR VOLEI FUTURO IN BRAZIL: Three-time U.S. Olympian Stacy Sykora (Burleson, Texas) and U.S. Women’s National Team setter Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich.) are competing for Volei Futuro in the Brazilian Superliga during the 2010-11 professional club season. Volei Futoro upset league-leader Unilever 25-19, 25-19, 25-23 on March 11. Sykora was the libero in the victory, while Glass was absent from the active roster. Volei Futuro had its match with Macae Sports on March 13 postponed until March 14 due to wet floor conditions. With the delay, Macae Sports came away with a 23-25, 25-23, 25-19, 15-25, 15-11 victory.

FAWCETT IN BRAZIL WITH USIMINAS MINAS: Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio), a U.S. Women’s National Team opposite, is playing the 2010-11 professional club season in Brazil with Usiminas Minas. After a bye week, Usiminas returned to the court on March 10 and rallied to defeat Pinheiros/Mackenzie 23-25, 18-25, 26-24, 25-15, 15-12. Fawcett scored 17 points in the victory, including 16 kills on 46 attacks and a block. She scored 13 points with 11 kills on 31 attacks and two blocks in Usiminas’ 15-25, 25-19, 25-20, 25-20 loss to Sollys/Osasco on March 12.

SCOTT-ARRUDA IN BRAZIL WITH SAO BERNARDO: Four-time U.S. Olympian Danielle Scott-Arruda (Baton Rouge, La.) is back on the volleyball court after giving birth last spring and is playing for BMG Sao Bernardo in the Brazilian Superliga. Sao Bernado, after a break in the league action, came back to defeat Brusque 28-30, 25-20, 25-20, 25-16 on March 10. Scott-Arruda produced a team-high 19 points with 12 kills on 24 attacks, six blocks and an ace. Scott-Arruda scored a team-high 19 points with 15 kills on 24 swings and four blocks as Sao Bernardo topped Pauta/Sao Jose 25-21, 26-28, 25-19, 28-26 on March 12.

LARSON WITH KAZAN IN RUSSIA: U.S. Women’s National Team outside hitter Jordan Larson (Hooper, Neb.) is playing for Dinamo Kazan of the Russia Super League during the 2010-2011 pro club season. She helped Kazan to a 25-22, 25-14, 25-15 victory over Proton on March 9. She notched 12 points with 10 kills on 19 swings to go with two aces in the victory. On March 12, Kazan topped Dinamo Krasnador 27-25, 25-23, 27-25 in a tightly contested three-set match with all three sets decided by the minimum two points. Larson provided nine points – all on kills from 20 attacks – while providing a 45 positive reception percent. Kazan improves to 17-1 on the season and a half-match ahead of Dinamo Moscow in the league standings with four matches left. However, Kazan’s next match is against Dinamo Moscow on March 25.

BOWN WITH TURKEY’S ECZACIBASI: Heather Bown (Yorba Linda, Calif.), a three-time Olympic Games middle blocker for the U.S. Women’s National Team, is competing in Turkey for Eczacibasi during the 2010-11 professional club season. In the Turkish League, Eczacibasi swept Dicle Universitesi 25-11, 26-24, 25-9 on March 12 without Bown in the lineup. Eczacibasi is now 15-1 on the season and tied for first place with Fenerbahce.

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