COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 17, 2012) – The U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team rallied past Dominican Republic 24-26, 24-26, 25-15, 25-22, 15-12 to win Pool A of the Pan American Cup on Monday at Juarez, Mexico.
The U.S. concluded Pool A with a 4-1 record and 18 points, the same as Cuba. However, Team USA won the tiebreaker of point quotient with a 1.227 mark compared to Cuba’s 1.118. By winning Pool A, the Americans advance directly into the semifinals and qualify for the 2013 FIVB World Grand Prix. To view video live stream, visit norceca.net.
Nancy Metcalf (Hull, Iowa) led the U.S. with a match-high 28 points with 23 kills, four blocks and an ace. Kristin Richards (Orem, Utah) added 21 points via 18 kills and three blocks. Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minn.) contributed nine kills, five blocks and an ace for 15 points. Jennifer Tamas (Milpitas, Calif.) tacked on five kills and four blocks for nine points. Cassidy Lichtman (Poway, Calif.) collected six points all on kills, while Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich.) rounded out the scoring with a block.
Kayla Banwarth (Dubuque, Iowa) tallied 12 digs and 33 excellent receptions on 48 attempts.
“Dominican Republic is one of the strongest teams in the world and we are happy to get the victory,” said Sykora, who is serving as the captain of the U.S. squad. “But we had to put this one in the past because the tournament is still going and we need to see the future.”
Reed Sunahara (Cincinnati, Ohio), who is serving as the head coach for the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team competing at the Pan American Cup, started Richards and Lichtman at outside hitter, Tamas and Gibbemeyer at middle blocker, Metcalf at opposite and Glass at setter. Kayla Banwarth (Dubuque, Iowa) is the designated libero for the tournament. Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio) was a sub in all but the third set, while Keao Burdine (Pico Rivera, Calif.) was a sub in the second and third sets. Stacy Sykora (Burleson, Texas) was a sub in the fifth set.
“The result could have gone either way,” Sunahara stated. “It was a very intense match and I am proud of my team for not giving up and coming back from 0-2.”
The U.S. out-blocked Bulgaria 17-14 and took advantage of 33 Dominican Republic errors while holding its miscues to 17 for the match. Dominican Republic held a slim 4-2 lead in aces and 66-61 edge in kills.
Dominican Republic was led by Bethania De La Cruz’s 22 points and Gina Altagracia Mambru added 21 points.
The Pan American Cup serves as a qualification tournament into the 2013 FIVB World Grand Prix, which the U.S. has won each of the past three years. The top four teams from NORCECA, plus the top team from South America other than Brazil, will qualify for the 2013 FIVB World Grand Prix.
After an off-day on July 17, cross-over quarterfinal matches between second- and third-place teams in each pool will take place at COBACH on July 18 as well as classification matches for positions seven through 12. Pool winners earn a direct ticket to the semifinals, which take place on July 19 at COBACH. The tournament concludes with medal round and final classification matches on July 20 at COBACH.
Women's Pan American Cup Year-by-Year
Year: Gold – Silver – Bronze
2002: Cuba – Dominican Republic – USA
2003: USA – Dominican Republic – Cuba
2004: Cuba – USA – Dominican Republic
2005: Cuba – Dominican Republic – Brazil
2006: Brazil – Cuba – Dominican Republic
2007: Cuba – Brazil – Dominican Republic
2008: Dominican Republic – Brazil – Argentina
2009: Brazil – Dominican Republic – Puerto Rico
2010: Dominican Republic – Peru – USA
2011: Brazil – Dominican Republic - USA
2012 U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team Roster for Pan American
# - Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
1 - Alisha Glass (S, 6-0, Leland, Mich., Penn State)
5 – Stacy Sykora (L, 5-10, Burleson, Texas, Texas A&M)
6 – Kayla Banwarth (L, 5-10, Dubuque, Iowa, Nebraska)
9 - Jennifer Tamas (MB, 6-4, Milpitas, Calif., Pacific)
11 – Lauren Paolini (MB, 6-4, Ann Arbor, Mich., Texas)
12 - Nancy Metcalf (Opp, 6-1, Hull, Iowa, Nebraska)
14 - Nicole Fawcett (Opp, 6-4, Zanesfield, Ohio, Penn State)
15 – Cassidy Lichtman (OH, 6-1, Poway, Calif., Stanford)
17 – Carli Lloyd (S, 5-11, Bonsall, Calif., California-Berkeley)
19 – Keao Burdine (OH, 6-1, Pico Rivera, Calif., Southern California)
24 – Kristin Richards (OH, 6-1, Orem, Utah, Stanford)
25 – Lauren Gibbemeyer (MB, 6-2, St. Paul, Minn., Minnesota)
Head Coach: Reed Sunahara (Cincinnati,
Assistant Coach: Tom Pestolesi (Huntington Beach, Calif.)
Assistant Coach: Dan Fisher (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.)
Team Manager: Mike Hebert (San Diego, Calif.)
Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo (Lincoln, Neb.)
Medical Support: Maria “Larnie” Boquiren (Culver City, Calif.)