COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 12, 2012) – USA Volleyball is pleased to announce the 2012 U.S. Olympic Beach Volleyball Team for both men and women.
The athletes and staff will represent the United States in the beach volleyball tournament at the 2012 Olympic Games on July 28-Aug. 9 in London.
The U.S. women’s beach teams will be Misty May-Treanor (Santa Monica, Calif.) and Kerri Walsh (San Jose, Calif.) along with April Ross (Cost Mesa, Calif.) and Jennifer Kessy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.). The U.S. men’s beach teams will be Phil Dalhausser (Ormond Beach, Fla.) and Todd Rogers (Santa Barbara, Calif.) along with Jake Gibb (Bountiful, Utah) and Sean Rosenthal (Redondo Beach, Fla.).
Kessy and Ross make up the only team of the four that will be competing in the Olympics for the first time.
"We are so excited to have officially qualified for the 2012 Games,” Ross said. “It was two years of extremely hard work and to have that pay off feels so rewarding.
“The closer it gets the more grateful I am to be having this experience. I cannot wait to walk in the Opening Ceremony, see the village and other athletes, and, more than anything, compete for gold!"
The teams qualified based on points accrued at tournaments on the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour since January of 2011.
“This is the strongest team we have ever sent to the Olympic Games.” USA Volleyball Senior Director Dave Williams, who coordinates the organization’s beach department. “All four teams have the ability to win a gold medal.”
Leading the way will be two-time Olympic gold medalists May-Treanor and Walsh who have never lost a set in Olympic competition as a team.
London will mark the fourth straight Olympic Games for both May-Treanor and Walsh. May-Treanor finished fifth at the 2000 Olympic Games with partner Holly McPeak. Walsh placed fourth at the 2000 Olympic Games as part of the U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team (indoor).
After winning their second gold medal in Beijing, May-Treanor and Walsh each took time away from the sport. May-Treanor injured her Achilles tendon on the television show Dancing with the Stars. Walsh had two sons, one in May of 2009 and the second in May of 2010.
The pair reunited at the beginning of 2011. Since then, the team has won three gold medals and five silver medals in 18 FIVB World Tour tournaments. They are currently ranked No. 3 in the FIVB Olympic rankings.
Dalhausser and Rogers will also go to London to defend their 2008 gold medal. The team has found great success since winning in Beijing. In 2010, they became the first American men’s team to win the SWATCH FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour championship since the early 1990s. That same year, Dalhausser and Rogers also established a record for prize money by a men’s team in a single-season with $387,700 in earnings. They were named the FIVB’s Team of the Year after capturing nine SWATCH FIVB World Tour titles in 2010.
In 2011, Dalhausser and Rogers dealt with some injury issues, but still finished the season in second place in the FIVB World Tour rankings and winning $144,200. The team finished the season with four gold medals, three silvers and two bronze medals on the FIVB World Tour.
Gibb and Rosenthal finished fifth at the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, but returning to the Olympic sand was no easy task. Toward the end of 2011, the pair found itself in a close race with the U.S. team of Matt Fuerbringer (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Nick Lucena (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) for the second U.S. men’s berth for the Olympics.
The Olympic chase came down to the final weekend of qualifying at the Rome Grand Slam. Gibb and Rosenthal advanced to the semifinals, which put them over the top in earning qualifying points. Then they went on to win the gold medal, their first from a Grand Slam title.
Even though they are newcomers when it comes to the Olympics, Kessy and Ross have plenty of international experience.
After barely missing out on qualifying for the 2008 Summer Olympic Games, Kessy and Ross went on to win the 2009 FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Championship. That season they ended up winning three FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour gold medals, two silvers and four bronze medals. In 2011, the team won one gold medal, three silvers and three bronze medals. They won their first medal of 2012, a bronze, at the Rome Grand Slam in mid-June.
Each team will bring its own coach. Mario Sicoli (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) will coach May-Treanor and Walsh.
Jeff Conover (Bellflower, Calif.) will support Kessy and Ross.
Mike Dodd (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) will work with Gibb and Rosenthal.
Dalhausser and Rogers will work with conditioning coach Bob Alejo (Holly Springs, N.C.), who was also with them in Beijing.
Team leaders will be Jonpaul Roepke (Segeant Bluff, Iowa) and Al Lau (Los Angeles).
Brady Compton (South Haven, Mich.) will be the technical specialist.
Dr. Jon Fow (Avila Beach, Calif.) will serve as team doctor and Dr. Joel Carmichael will be the chiropractor. Meiling Brownfield (Gulf Breeze, Fla.) will serve as team physical therapist and athletic trainer.
U.S. Olympic Beach Volleyball Team
Misty May Treanor (Santa Monica, Calif., 5-9, Long Beach State, coach is Marcio Sicoli)
Kerri Walsh (San Jose, Calif., 6-3, Stanford, coach is Marcio Sicoli)
Jennifer Kessy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif., 6-0, University Southern California, coach is Jeff Conover)
April Ross (Costa Mesa, Calif., 6-1, University of Southern California, coach is Jeff Conover)
Phil Dalhausser (Ormond Beach, Fla., 6-9, University of Central Florida, coach is Bob Alejo)
Todd Rogers (Santa Barbara, Calif., 6-2, UC Santa Barbara, coach is Bob Alejo)
Jake Gibb (Bountiful, Utah, 6-7, University of Utah, coach is Mike Dodd)
Sean Rosenthal (Redondo Beach, Cailf., 6-3, no college, coach is Mike Dodd)
Bob Alejo (Coach; Holly Springs, N.C.)
Jeff Conover (Coach; Bellflower, Calif.)
Mike Dodd (Coach; Manhattan Beach, Calif.)
Marcio Sicoli (Coach; Hermosa Beach, Calif.)
Meiling Brownfield (Team Physical Therapist & Athletic Trainer; Gulf Breeze, Fla.)
Brady Compton (Technical Coordinator; South Haven, Mich.)
Jonpaul Roepke (Team Leader; Sergeant Bluff, Iowa)
Al Lau (Team Leader; Los Angeles)
Dr Jon Fow (Team Doctor; Avila Beach, Calif.)
Dr Joel Carmichael (Team Chiropractor; Denver, Colo.)