Portland and Green Bay to Host World Class Men's Volleyball

March 09, 2007, 12 a.m. (ET)
ANAHEIM, Calif. (March 9, 2007) - USA Volleyball has announced that Portland, Ore., and Green Bay, Wis., will host the first two weekends of domestic competition when the U.S. Men's Volleyball Team plays in the 2007 FIVB World League.

The FIVB World League is an elite men's volleyball competition in which the world's best teams are divided into four pools and play for six straight weekends. Winners from each pool go on to the finals, along with the host country and a wild-card pick. The 2007 FIVB World League will be an important tune-up for the U.S. Men as they prepare for qualifying events for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

The other teams in Pool B with Team USA are Italy, ranked No. 2 in the world, France, ranked seventh, and Japan, which is ranked 10th.

The U.S. Men, ranked eighth in the world, will square off twice against France at 7 p.m. PT on Saturday, May 26 and at 5 p.m. PT on Sunday, May 27 at the University of Portland Chiles Arena.

Tickets are available through America's Best at www.americasbestusa.com or by calling (503) 936-3203. Ticket prices have been announced at $10, $15 and $20 for the matches.

The following weekend, Team USA will move on to the Resch Center in Green Bay to face Japan at 7 p.m. CT on both Friday, June 1 and Saturday, June 2.

Tickets will go on sale March 24 at all Oneida Casino Ticket Star locations, the Resch Center Box Office, by phone at (800) 895-0071 or by visiting www.ticketstaronline.com. The prices are $15 for a single night match (June 1 or 2) and $25 for both nights.

Ticket and site information for the final domestic weekend of World League, to be played against Italy on the weekend of June 15-17, will be announced soon.

ESPNU will broadcast all the matches in the United States on the same day in which the match is played. It will also broadcast the World League Finals.

"Brian Parrott in Portland has organized many successful matches for us, including the sold-out matches between the United States and the Soviet Union in 1985 in Portland and Seattle," said USA Volleyball CEO Doug Beal. "He puts on quality sporting events that get spectators in the seats.

"You can't say enough about Green Bay as a sports city," Beal continued. "Its support of the Packers is unmatched in any other NFL city and we hope to get similar support for our team."

The U.S. Men will play six straight weekends of World League tournaments from May 25-June 30. The World League finals are set for July 11-15.

U.S. Men's Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon is looking forward to seeing his team improve on its 10th-place finish at the 2006 World League.

"It's a very difficult schedule. We will have to play in North America, Asia and Europe over the six weeks," he said. "But it's really, really good for our team to be playing matches against these opponents.

"We are going to be using World League to look at different lineups in preparation for the NORCECA Championships and FIVB World Cup tournament. Those tournaments will be the first steps to our Olympic qualifying."
For complete information about the U.S. World League team, go to www.usavolleyball.org.

2007 FIVB World League Pools

Pool A
Brazil, Canada, Korea, Finland

Pool B
France, USA, Japan, Italy

Pool C
Russia, Cuba, Egypt, Serbia

Pool D
Bulgaria, Argentina, China, Poland

2007 U.S. World League Schedule

May 26-27: USA vs. France, Portland, Ore.
June 1-2: USA vs. Japan, Green Bay, Wis.
June 8-10: USA at France
June 15-17: USA vs. Italy, Site TBA
June 22-24: USA at Japan
June 29-July 1: USA at Italy
July 11-15: World League Finals