GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala – Following another dominating performance at the U20 NORCECA Continental Championship, the Women’s Junior National Team defeated Cuba in straight sets, 25-15, 25-22, 25-16, to claim gold.
“It feels good to win the gold and to qualify for the world championship undefeated and without dropping a set as a reward for playing hard.” U.S. team captain Hayley Hodson (Newport Beach, Calif.) said in a NORCECA interview.
The U.S. continued the trend of leading in kills (32-26), blocks (14-7) and aces (8-2) on Sunday night, as they cruised to their fourth consecutive win in Guatemala.
Middle blocker Rhamat Alhassan (Glendarden, Md.) again topped the U.S. in scoring, after adding 15 points on nine attacks and a team-leading four blocks. Hodson followed Alhassan’s effort with 14 points of her own, thanks to a team-high 10 attacks, with two blocks to round out her stat line.
Outside hitter Courtney Schwan (Milton, Wash.) added eight points in the match, while fellow opposite hitter Alexa Smith (Monument, Colo.) contributed six points to the win.
Molly Sauer (Louisville, Ky.) had eight digs on 18 attempts at the libero spot, with outside hitter Smith adding seven digs on 15 attempts.
Setter Jordyn Poulter (Aurora, Colo.) had 17 running sets on 65 attempts, compared to Cuba’s 11 sets on 79 attempts. Poulter also had two attacks and two blocks with an ace on Sunday.
With the win, Team USA has claimed gold at five of the last six Continental Championships.
2014 U.S. Women’s Junior National Team
Name (Position, Hometown, Region, Club, HS Grad Year)
1- Jordyn Poulter (S, Aurora, Colo., Rocky Mountain Region, Front Range Volleyball Club, 2015)
2- Audriana Fitzmorris (MB, Overland Park, Kan., Heart of America Region, Invasion Volleyball Club, 2016)
3- Hayley Hodson (OH, Newport Beach, Calif., Southern California Region, Tstreet Volleyball Club, 2015)
4- Cat McCoy (L, Southlake, Texas, North Texas Region, TAV, 2014)
5- Alexa Smith (OH, Monument, Colo., Rocky Mountain Region, Colorado Juniors Volleyball Club, 2015)
6- Molly Sauer (L, Louisville, Ky., Pioneer Region, KIVA, 2015)
7- Danielle Cuttino (MB, Indianapolis, Ind., Hoosier Region, Circle City Volleyball Club, 2014)
8- Ainise Havili (S, Haltom City, Texas, North Texas Region, TAV, 2014)
9- Molly Haggerty (OH, Glen Ellyn, Ill., Great Lakes Region, Sports Performance Volleyball Club, 2016)
10- Courtney Schwan (OH, Milton, Wash., Puget Sound Region, Kent Juniors, 2014)
11- Mikaela Foecke (MB, West Point, Iowa, Iowa Region, Fusion Volleyball Club, 2015)
12- Rhamat Alhassan (MB, Glenarden, Md., Chesapeake Region, Metro American Volleyball Club, 2014)
Head Coach: Tom Hogan
Assistant Coaches: Erin Virtue, Robyn Ah Mow-Santos
Technical Coordinator: Nate Ngo
Team Leader: Denise Sheldon
July 8 - Cuba def Nicaragua, 25-11, 25-6, 25-16
July 9 - Dominican Republic def Nicaragua, 25-3, 25-9, 25-8
July 10 - Cuba def Dominican Republic, 25-16, 25-16, 17-25, 25-20
July 8 - Guatemala def Martinique, 25-14, 25-12, 25-17
July 9 - Costa Rica def Martinique, 25-12, 25-12, 25-5
July 10 - Costa Rica def Guatemala, 25-17, 25-20, 22-25, 21-25, 15-8
July 8 - Mexico def St. Lucia, 25-7, 25-18, 25-8
July 9 - USA def St. Lucia, 25-5, 25-4, 25-3
July 10 - USA def Mexico, 25-5, 25-21, 25-18
July 11 - Nicaragua def St. Lucia, 25-19, 25-20, 25-21
July 11 - Dominican Republic def Guatemala, 25-4, 25-4, 25-2
July 11 – Mexico def Costa Rica, 25-10, 25-12, 25-16
July 12 - Nicaragua def Martinique, 25-22, 25-18, 25-23
July 12 - Cuba def Mexico, 25-23, 14-25, 25-22, 25-20
July 12 - USA def Dominican Republic, 25-16, 25-20, 25-18
July 13 - 5th Place, Costa Rica def Guatemala 25-17, 21-25, 25-9, 25-15
July 13 - 3rd Place, Dominican Republic def Mexico 25-17, 25-16, 25-19
July 13 - Gold Medal, USA def Cuba 25-15, 25-22, 25-16
3. Dominican Republic
5. Costa Rica
9. St. Lucia
MVP: Rhamat Alhassan, USA
Best Scorer: Melissa Vargas, CUB
Best Spiker: Courtney Schwan, USA
Best Blocker: Rhamat Alhassan, USA
Best Server: Melissa Vargas, CUB
Best Setter: Jordyn Poulter, USA
Best Receiver: Molly Sauer, USA
Best Digger: Molly Sauer, USA
Best Libero: Dayessi Luis, CUB
Outside Hitter: Courtney Schwan, USA
Outside Hitter: Diaris Perez, CUB
Middle Blocker: Rhamat Alhassan, USA
Middle Blocker: Patricia Valle, MEX