U.S. Girls' Youth National Team Wins Gold at NORCECA

By Jen Armson-Dyer | Aug. 11, 2012, 12 a.m. (ET)

Copy by Jen Armson-Dyer

Carli Snyder was named tournament Most Valuable Player and Taylor Tashima was named best setter. 


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (August 11, 2012) – The U.S. Girls’ Youth National Volleyball Team used three players in double-digit scoring to capture gold at the NORCECA Girls’ Youth Continental Championship in Tijuana, Mexico. The United States defeated the Dominican Republic 21-25, 25-17, 25-23, 25-15 Saturday night, and is also one of three qualifiers for the 2013 FIVB Volleyball Girls’ Youth World Championship.

The United States finished a perfect 5-0 in the NORCECA Girls’ Youth Continental Championship, and dropped only two individual sets during the tournament.

Simone Lee (Menomonee, Wis.) led the United States with 18 points on 16 kills, one block and one ace while Carli Snyder (Macomb, Mich.) tallied 17 points on 15 kills and two aces. Crissy Jones (Lakewood, Calif.) posted 10 points on six kills, two blocks and two aces as Courtney Schwan (Milton, Wash.) notched five points on five kills and Taylor Tashima (Wilmette, Ill.) also added in five points on two kills and three aces. Audriana Fitzmorris (Overland Park, Kan.) contributed four points on four kills while both Stephanie Aiple (Round Rock, Texas) and Hayley Hodson (Newport Beach, Calif.) posted one point on one ace.

In the first set, Sunahara started Jones and Fitzmorris at middle blocker, Lee and Snyder at outside hitter, Schwan at opposite, Tashima at setter and Luisa Schirmer (Pittsford, N.Y.) at libero. Tia Scambray (Laguna Niguel, Calif.), Aiple and Hodson were used as substitutes in the first set. In the second, third and fourth sets, Jones and Fitzmorris started at middle hitter, Lee and Snyder started at outside hitter, Schwan started at opposite, Tashima started at setter and Jordan Pingel (Colorado Springs, Colo.) started at libero. Hodson and Aiple were used as substitutes in the second, third and fourth sets, while Scambray also saw action in the third.

Elizabeth Martinez Brayelin led the Dominican Republic with 24 points on 23 kills and a block while captain Natalia Martinez posted 10 kills and a block for 11 points.

The Dominican Republic grabbed the 5-2 lead on a kill to start the match. A Lee kill out of the backrow and a Tashima ace knotted the score at 6-6 before a Dominican kill and a U.S. error dropped the Americans down 8-6 going into the technical timeout. The score remained close, with a Jones kill out of the middle pulling the U.S. to within one at 12-11. A couple of American errors put the Dominican Republic up 16-12 headed into the second technical timeout. The U.S. continued to trail, falling behind 21-16 on a block but some strong kills from the Americans, including kills from Snyder and Lee, pulled the United States within three at 23-20. Another big Lee kill out of the backrow narrowed the gap to 23-21 but a Dominican block and ace gave them the set, 25-21.

The second set started off even, with a Schwan kill off the block and a Fitzmorris ace knotting the score at 6-6. A big block by Schwan and Jones along with a Dominican error put the United States up 8-6 and a huge kill from Snyder out of the backrow made it 13-6. Another massive block, this one from Lee, pushed the score to 15-7 and a Snyder kill made it 19-9. A Hodson ace extended the U.S. lead to 21-11 and the teams traded errors before Lee tooled the block for the win, 25-17.

A Tashima kill off a setter dump and kills from Lee and Schwan evened the score in the third set at 6-6. The Dominican Republic took a slim 10-9 lead on a tip kill and maintained the advantage, going up 16-13 on a kill off the U.S. block. Dominican errors and a Lee ace knotted the score at 17-17 but the Dominicans responded with a couple more tip kills to take back the lead at 20-18. A Lee kill through the seam of the block after a long rally, coupled with a Dominican ball-handling error, tied the game at 20-20 and forced a timeout. The teams traded kills twice, with a monster Lee kill making it 22-22. A Dominican kill followed by an error again tied the score at 23-23 but a Snyder overpass kill followed by a touched cross-court kill from Snyder gave the United States the set, 25-23.

The United States started off the fourth set up 6-3 aided by aces from Tashima and Snyder. A Jones kill made it 8-5 and another Jones kill pushed the score to 10-6. The Dominican Republic pulled within one at 10-9 on consecutive U.S. errors but two errors of their own coupled with a Snyder kill off a huge Schwan dig down the line gave the Americans the 13-9 advantage. The U.S. continued its confident play as a Snyder kill and a Jones ace on the line pushed the lead to 15-9 and a Fitzmorris kill gave the United States a 16-10 lead. A Lee tip kill from the backrow, a Schwan kill and a Snyder ace extended the U.S. lead to 19-12 and a Fitzmorris kill in the middle off a Pingel perfect pass made it 21-13. Lee tooled the Dominican block for the 22-15 lead and an Aiple ace and two more Lee kills gave the U.S. the set and match, 25-15.

2012 U.S. Girls’ Youth National Volleyball Team Roster
Name (Position, City, State, Grad Year, Club, Region)

1 - Stephanie Aiple (S, Round Rock, Texas, 2014, Austin Juniors, Lone Star)
2 - Audriana Fitzmorris (MB, Overland Park, Kan., 2016, PVA, Heart of America)
3 - Hayley Hodson (OH, Newport Beach, Calif., 2015, Tstreet, Southern California)
4 - Crissy Jones (MB, Lakewood, Calif., 2014, Tstreet, Southern California)
5 - Simone Lee (OH, Menomonee, Wis., 2014, Milwaukee Sting, Badger)
6 - Jordan Pingel (L, Colorado Springs, Colo., 2015, Colorado Juniors, Rocky Mountain)
7 - Savannah Rennie (MB/OH, San Diego, Calif., 2015, Wave, Southern California)
8 - Tia Scambray (OH, Laguna Niguel, Calif., 2014, Tstreet, Souther California)
9 - Luisa Schirmer (OH, Pittsford, N.Y., 2014, VolleyFX, Western Empire)
10 - Courtney Schwan (OH, Milton, Wash., 2014, Kent Juniors, Puget Sound)
11 – Carli Snyder (OH, Macomb, Mich., 2014, Michigan Elite, Lakeshore, 2014)
12 - Taylor Tashima (S, Wilmette, Ill., 2014, Wildcat Juniors, Great Lakes)

Head Coach: Reed Sunahara
Assistant Coaches: Nick Cheronis, Myanna Webster
Team Leader: Denise Sheldon

2012 NORCECA Girls’ Youth Continental Championship Schedule

Pool A
Aug. 6: USA def. Costa Rica, 3-0 (25-15, 25-11, 25-10)
Aug. 6: Mexico def. Guatemala, 3-0 (25-13, 25-9, 25-12)
Aug. 7: USA def. Guatemala, 3-0 (25-6, 25-5, 25-12)
Aug. 7: Mexico def. Costa Rica, 3-0 (25-15, 25-11, 25-10)
Aug. 8: Guatemala def. Costa Rica, 3-2 (25-21, 17-25, 24-26, 25-17, 15-11)
Aug. 8: USA def. Mexico, 3-0 (25-14, 25-12, 25-17)

Pool B
Aug. 6: Puerto Rico def. Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0 (25-7, 25-7, 25-8)
Aug. 7: Dominican Republic def. Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0 (25-8, 25-6, 25-5)
Aug. 8: Dominican Republic def. Puerto Rico, 3-0 (25-20, 25-21, 25-19)

Aug. 9: Puerto Rico def. Guatemala, 3-0 (25-8, 25-10, 25-18) (Quarterfinal)
Aug. 9: Mexico def. Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0 (25-6, 25-10, 25-5 (Quarterfinal)

Aug. 10: Guatemala def. Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0 (25-8, 25-13, 25-17) (Classifications 5/6)
Aug. 10: United States def. Puerto Rico, 3-1 (26-24, 25-13, 19-25, 25-13 (Semifinal)
Aug. 10: Dominican Republic def. Mexico, 3-0 (25-22, 25-22, 25-12) (Semifinal)

Aug. 11: Mexico def. Puerto Rico, 3-0 (25-23, 22-25, 25-17, 21-25, 15-13) (bronze)
Aug. 11: United States def. Dominican Republic 3-1 (21-25, 25-17, 25-23, 25-15) (gold)