COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Sept. 12, 2013) – The U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team has set its roster for the nine-team Visit Omaha NORCECA Continental Championship that will be held Sept. 16-21 at Ralston Arena.
The U.S. has selected four outside hitters, three middle blockers, two setters, two opposites and one libero to fill out its 12-player roster. Outside hitter Jordan Larson-Burbach (Hooper, Neb.), a 2012 Olympic Games silver medalist, and libero Kayla Banwarth (Dubuque, Iowa) are local favorites having played at nearby University of Nebraska. Joining Larson-Burbach at outside hitter are Kristin Hildebrand (Orem, Utah), Kim Hill (Portland, Ore.) and Cassidy Lichtman (Poway, Calif.).
Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minn.), Christa Harmotto (Hopewell Township, Pa.), a 2012 Olympic Games silver medalist, and Lauren Paolini (Ann Arbor, Mich.) are the middle blockers selected to the U.S. roster. Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich.) and Jenna Hagglund (West Chester, Ohio) are the U.S. setters chosen to compete in the event. Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio) and Kelly Murphy (Wilmington, Ill.) have been chosen as opposites on the team.
All but Larson-Burbach competed in the recently completed FIVB World Grand Prix in which the young roster finished sixth competing against the top teams in the world fielding several Olympians, including tournament champion Brazil having seven Olympians. Team USA won the Pan American Cup, which included the top teams from NORCECA and South America, with 10 of the 12 athletes on the upcoming NORCECA roster.
“Pan Am Cup and World Grand Prix were amazing learning experiences for our young group - most of our athletes had played very few significant minutes in those events until this year, and they got numerous chances to earn confidence in themselves, and from their teammates,” U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team Head Coach Karch Kiraly said. “We also got some beautiful lessons how to respond to adversity with resilience, and in how much investment it takes, every play, to become great - and those lessons will serve the USA well over the next few years.”
The tournament, in its 23rd edition dating back to 1969, features three round-robin pools of three teams. Matches are set for 4 p.m. CT, 6 p.m. CT and 8 p.m. CT each day.
Team USA, ranked second in the world with a 17-5 record in 2013, opens pool play versus Mexico on Sept. 16 at 8 p.m. CT, followed by rival Cuba on Sept. 18 at 8 p.m.
Quarterfinal round matches are on Sept. 19, followed by semifinals on Sept. 20. The gold- and bronze-medal matches conclude the tournament on Sept. 21. The winner of the tournament earns a spot in the season-ending FIVB Grand Champions Cup this November in Japan.
Tickets for the event can be purchased online at www.homepridetix.com, via phone at 800-440-3741 or at the Ralston Arena box office. Single day tickets start at just $20 and include all three games for that day. Championship weekend packages also are available starting at just $50 and include all Friday and Saturday games.
All matches during the NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship will be streamed live and accessed through USA Volleyball’s web site by clicking here.
The U.S. has won the NORCECA Championship six times (1981, 1983, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2011), including the most recent event held in 2011 at Caguas, Puerto Rico. Further, the U.S. has earned the silver medal 11 times - all with Cuba winning the gold as part of its record 13 NORCECA titles. Team USA has won the bronze medal three times and missed the podium just twice in the 22 previous editions. Mexico won the first two NORCECA Championships in 1969 and 1971, while Dominican Republic is the only other country to win the event with its title in 2009.
Team USA completed the five-week long FIVB World Grand Prix on Sept. 1, finishing sixth in the tournament with an overall record of 9-5. The U.S. ended the three weekend preliminary phase with an 8-1 record and in fourth place. Using a young roster with just one regular starter from the 2012 Olympic Games silver medal squad, Team USA produced wins over No. 3 Japan (twice), No. 6 Russia, No. 7 Serbia, No. 12 Algeria and No. 13 Poland with losses to No. 1 Brazil (twice), No. 4 Italy, No. 5 China and No. 7 Serbia. With the exception of Larson-Burbach, every player on the U.S. roster for NORCECA played in the World Grand Prix.
U.S. Women's National Volleyball Team Roster for NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship
# - Name (Position, Height, Spike Touch, Block Touch, Hometown, College)
1 - Alisha Glass (S, 6-0, 10-0, 9-10, Leland, Mich., Penn State University)
7 - Cassidy Lichtman (OH, 6-1, 9-10, 9-2, Poway, Calif., Stanford University)
8 - Lauren Gibbemeyer (MB, 6-2, 10-1, 9-7, St. Paul, Minn., University of Minnesota)
9 - Kristin Hildebrand (OH, 6-1, 9-10, 9-4, Orem, Utah, Stanford University)
10 – Jordan Larson-Burbach (OH, 6-2, 9-11, 9-8, Hooper, Neb., University of Nebraska)
12 - Kayla Banwarth (L, 5-10, 9-8, 9-3, Dubuque, Iowa, University of Nebraska)
13 - Christa Harmotto (MB, 6-2, 10-7, 9-10, Hopewell Township, Pa., Penn State University)
14 - Nicole Fawcett (OPP, 6-4, 10-2, 9-7, Zanesfield, Ohio, Penn State University)
15 - Kelly Murphy (OPP, 6-2, 10-4, 10-1, Wilmington, Ill., University of Florida)
17 - Lauren Paolini (MB, 6-4, 10-5, 9-10, Ann Arbor, Mich., University of Texas)
20 - Jenna Hagglund (S, 5-10, 9-7, 9-6, West Chester, Ohio, University of Washington)
24 - Kim Hill (OH, 6-4, 10-6, 10-2, Portland, Ore., Pepperdine University)
Head Coach: Karch Kiraly
Assistant Coaches: Reed Sunahara, Mike Hebert
Technical Coordinator: Joe Trinsey
Athletic Trainer: Jill Wosmek
Team Leader: Kenneth Sullivan
2013 Visit Omaha NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship Schedule
(all times Central Time)
Dominican Republic vs. Costa Rica, 4 p.m. (Pool A)
Puerto Rico vs. St. Lucia, 6 p.m. (Pool C)
United States vs. Mexico, 8 p.m. (Pool B)
Costa Rica vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 4 p.m. (Pool A)
Canada vs. St. Lucia, 6 p.m. (Pool C)
Mexico vs. Cuba, 8 p.m. (Pool B)
Dominican Republic vs. Trinidad & Tobago, 4 p.m. (Pool A)
Puerto Rico vs. Canada, 6 p.m. (Pool C)
United States vs. Cuba, 8 p.m. (Pool B)
9th-Place Classification Final, 4 p.m.
Quarterfinals, 6 p.m.
Quarterfinals, 8 p.m.
7th/8th-Place Classification Final, 4 p.m.
Semifinals, 6 p.m.
Semifinals, 8 p.m.
Fifth-Place Match, 4 p.m.
Bronze-Medal Match, 6 p.m.
Championship Finals, 8 p.m.
Year by Year Podiums
Year: Gold – Silver – Bronze
1969: MEX - CUB – USA
1971: MEX - CUB – AHO
1973: CUB - CAN – USA
1975: CUB - USA – MEX
1977: CUB - USA – CAN
1979: CUB - USA – MEX
1981: USA - CUB – MEX
1983: USA - CUB – CAN
1985: CUB - USA – CAN
1987: CUB - USA – CAN
1989: CUB - CAN – USA
1991: CUB - USA – CAN
1993: CUB - USA – CAN
1995: CUB - USA – CAN
1997: CUB - USA – DOM
1999: CUB - USA – CAN
2001: USA - CUB – DOM
2003: USA - CUB – DOM
2005: USA - CUB – DOM
2007: CUB - USA – DOM
2009: DOM - PUR – CUB
2011: USA – DOM - CUB