U.S. Women's Update - Dec. 15

Dec. 15, 2009, 1:44 p.m. (ET)

Bill Kauffman
Manager, Media Relations and Publications
Phone: 719-228-6800
E-Mail: bill.kauffman@usav.org

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Dec. 15, 2009) – The current U.S. Women's National Team Weekly update released on Dec. 15 includes briefs on U.S. players competing overseas, player information, Volley-Tweets, trivia questions and much more.

For the complete PDF version including a complete list of players training at the team’s facility at American Sports Centers in Anaheim, Volley-Tweets, the U.S. international transfer list, 2009 season stats and other fan interaction sections, click here.

TRIVIA QUESTIONS: 1. Who is the only player competing in the 2009 NCAA Division I Women’s Championship semifinal round this week in Tampa who also was part of 2009 U.S. Women’s National A2 Team? 2. What two major events will U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon be attending this weekend? 3. What is the current consecutive match win streak that Megan Hodge and Alisha Glass, who both trained with the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, hold while competing at Penn State? Answers can be found on page three in the full PDF version (click here) of the current U.S. Women’s National Team Weekly update.

HANEEF-PARK, JOINES TAMAS TALK TALL ON DR. PHIL: Tayyiba Haneef-Park (Laguna Hills, Calif.) and Jennifer Joines Tamas (Milpitas, Calif.), both members of the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball team and part of the silver-medal roster at the 2008 Olympic Games, know a thing or two about being tall. Haneef-Park stands 200 centimeters tall, or 6-feet, 7-inches. Only two other women’s volleyball players were taller than her at the 2008 Olympic Games – both Russian players who are 202 centimeters tall, less than one inch taller than Haneef-Park. Joines Tamas is listed on international rosters at 191 centimeters tall, nearly 6-3 1/2 in feet and inches. At the 2008 Olympic Games, she was the second tallest player on the U.S. Women’s Olympic Team roster behind Haneef-Park. In October of 2009, Haneef-Park and Joines Tamas jumped at the opportunity to share their story of growing up tall when asked to appear on the popular nationally syndicated television show Dr. Phil. Joines Tamas was contacted by her friend and editor of Volleyball Magazine, Erin Pryor, who had a friend working for the Dr. Phil show looking for tall, confident women to be part of a Dec. 2 episode titled “Parents’ Biggest Fears.” The episode would feature individual segments dealing with children’s height, designer babies and sick children facing extreme odds for recovery. For the full feature, click here.

BERG PUSHING ITALIAN TEAM TO TOP: Lindsey Berg (Honolulu), a setter on the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team which won the silver medal in Beijing, is playing for MC-Carnaghi Villa Cortese of the Italian Serie A professional league this winter. Villa Cortese, which moved up to Serie A this season, continues its transition to a top team as it defeated league-leader Monte Schiavo Banca Marche Jesi 25-20, 22-25, 25-11, 25-17 on Dec. 12. Berg set her team to a .273 hitting efficiency converting on 38 percent of its kill opportunities. The victory puts Villa Cortese in the league leadership with a 7-2 record and 20 points, one more then second-place Scavolini Pesaro. Villa Cortese challenges seventh-place Riso Scotti Pavia on Dec. 20 in its next Serie A match. To follow Berg throughout the season, check out her blog at http://lindseyberg.blogspot.com.

TOM, ASYSTEL VOLLEY NOVARA: Logan Tom (Salt Lake City, Utah), a three-time Olympian and member of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Games silver medal roster, is competing for Asystel Volley Novara in the Italian Serie A professional league this winter. Novara won its second Pool D match in the CEV Indesit Champions League first round with a 25-18, 25-18, 28-26 victory over Romania’s Metal Galati despite Tom’s absence from the roster. Novara challenges Poland’s Bank BPS Fakro Muszynianka on Dec. 17 in its third Champions League match. In Italian Serie A action, Novara dropped a 25-15, 25-16, 23-25, 25-18 match to Despar Perugia on Dec. 13. Tom played in the first three sets in a starting role, compiling five kills and a block for six points. Novara, now 4-5 on the season with 10 points, is in ninth place in the league standings. It will try to get back on the winning side with a Dec. 20 match against Zoppas Industries Conegliano, which is in 12th place in the 12-team Serie A Division.

BOWN COMPETING FOR JESI: Heather Bown (Yorba Linda,Calif.), a three-time Olympian with the U.S. Women’s National Team, is competing for Monte Schiavo Banca Marche Jesi in the Italian Serie A professional league. Bown scored 10 points for Jesi on Dec. 12, but her team dropped a 25-20, 22-25, 25-11, 25-17 match to now-league leader MC-Carnaghi Villa Cortese. She tallied eight kills on 18 swings, one block and an ace in the loss. Jesi falls to 6-3 on the season and is in a tie for third place with Foppapedretti Bergamo. Jesi returns to the court on Dec. 20 against second-place Scavolini Pesaro.

RICHARDS HELPING OMICHKA TO RUSSIAN LEAD: Kristin Richards (Orem, Utah), an outside hitter and 2008 U.S. Olympic Team alternate, is playing in the Russia Super League for a third year in a row – this time with Omichka in Omsk. She led Omichka to a 33-31, 23-25, 25-18, 20-25, 15-9 victory over Dinamo Krasnodar on Dec. 12. Richards totaled 19 points with 15 kills, three blocks and an ace. Omichka is now 5-1 in league play and tied for second place with 11 points. Although the league is on hiatus until Dec. 26, Omichka will be in action hosting the Russian Cup on Dec. 21-22. The Russian Cup Finals includes Omichka, Dinamo Moscow, Zarechi-Odintsovo and Uralochka-NTMK. All four teams won their round-robin pool group of four teams to advance to the Russian Cup Final. To read about her Richards’ trip to Israel to obtain her Russian visa, click here.

NNAMANI, GLASS PACING PROSTEJOV IN CZECH REPUBLIC: Ogonna Nnamani (Bloomington, Ill.) and Kim Glass (Lancaster, Pa.) continue to lead their Czech Republic professional team Prostejov to a 12-0 start. Prostejov evened its CEV Indesit Champions League Pool C record to 1-1 with an 18-25, 25-18, 21-25, 27-25, 15-10 victory over Poland’s Aluprof Bielsko-Biala on Dec. 9 at Prostejov. Glass pocketed a match-high 22 points with 20 kills on 44 swings and two blocks. She chipped in a 66 positive percent and 53 excellent percent on service reception. Nnamani added nine kills and four blocks for 13 points in the five-set victory. Prostejov takes on Russia’s Dinamo Moscow in its next Champions League match on Dec. 15. In Czech Republic league action, Prostejov won its 12th straight match to start the league action as it downed SCM-CVS-JKY 25-12, 25-21, 25-20 on Dec. 13. Nnamani hammered 10 kills on 19 swings with only two errors to go with a block and ace for 12 points. Glass added nine kills, a block and an ace for 11 points. Prostejov plays Slavia Praha on Dec. 19 as its last league match in 2009 before a Jan. 9 restart of the league against Brno.

BARBOZA STARTS PROFESSIONAL CAREER: Cynthia Barboza (Long Beach, Calif.), an outside hitter with the U.S. Women’s National Team and alternate on both the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games rosters, is playing in her first professional volleyball season in Japan V-League with Toray. Her team split its matches this past weekend and are now 3-3 overall and tied for third place in the league standings. Barboza was a reserve in the second and third sets against Toyota on Dec. 12, netting two kills on four swings and a block, including a kill on match point yielding a 25-17, 25-16, 25-13 victory. On Dec. 13, Barboza played all five sets, including starts in the middle three sets, in a five-set marathon loss (26-24, 23-25, 25-18, 30-32, 21-19) to Denso. She was credited with 14 kills on 43 total attacks an only two errors to go with two blocks. Toray will compete in the Emperor’s Cup next week as the V-League is on hiatus through the rest of 2009.

METCALF GEARING UP FOR BRAZIL START: Nancy Metcalf (Hull, Iowa), a member of the 2004 U.S. Olympic Games roster, is in Brazil playing for Usiminia/Minas of the Brazilian Superliga. In the season opener, Metcalf scored a match-high 13 points in leading Minas to a 25-17, 25-16, 25-14 victory over Macae Sports on Dec. 10. She provided 11 kills on 24 swings while adding two blocks. However, Minas dropped its second match of the week 26-24, 25-19, 23-25, 25-19 to Unilever on Dec. 12. Metcalf tallied 21 points in the setback that included 20 kills on 49 attacks and a block. Minas returns to action on Dec. 17 against Pauta/Sao Jose/SC, followed by a Dec. 19 match versus Cativa/Opnnus.

DAVIS, HARMOTTO WITH LANG PING: Nicole Davis (Stockton, Calif.), the libero on the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team that won the silver medal, and Christa Harmotto (Aliquippa, Pa.) are playing for Guangdong Hengda in the Chinese Professional League under the direction of “Jenny” Lang Ping, who served as head coach for Team USA at the 2008 Olympic Games. The squad defeated provincial rival Guangdong on Dec. 12, but needed to rally from an opening set loss to win in four sets. Hengda won its fifth match of the season on Dec. 15 by dominating a team from Guangxi, despite its setter Feng leaving during the match after a ball hit her in the eye. No match statistics are available for either match. Davis was honored as the Best Defense after the match, while Lang Ping was Best Coach. Hengda’s Zhou Suhong earned Best Attacker after the match. According to Davis, Harmotto would have won Best Blocker if it were a post-match honor. Hengda now is the only undefeated team in the league at 5-0 and is off until Dec. 26.

U.S. WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM OPEN TRYOUTS: USA Volleyball will hold its annual open tryouts for the U.S. Women’s National Team and Associated Training Programs Feb. 19-21, 2010, at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colo. Hugh McCutcheon, the U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach, will lead the evaluation process for the tryout. The online tryout registration, which must be completed by Jan. 14, 2010, can be found by clicking here. Upon confirmation of registration, tryout participants will receive and must complete additional USOTC forms to be fully enrolled in the tryout. As part of the tryout, athletes will compete for spots on the U.S. Women’s Volleyball National Team program and the U.S. Women’s Senior A2 teams. The U.S. Women’s National Team program is open to athletes who have concluded their college eligibility and who wish to train full-time. This program could begin as early as February 2010, or when an athlete’s scholastic or professional club season has concluded. Athletes who will have remaining collegiate eligibility may still participate in the program with participation beginning May 2010 or when their scholastic calendar ends. For the full press release, click here.

U.S. WOMEN NEARING END OF FALL TRAINING SESSION: The U.S. Women’s National Team has 17 players taking part in the fall training session and continue to show improvements as they are being put to the test by U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) and his coaching staff. The session started on Oct. 12 and will go through December at the team’s training headquarters – the American Sports Centers in Anaheim, Calif. Training sessions, generally starting at 9:30 a.m. to noon Monday through Thursday, are open to the public at no cost. On Fridays, the team has weights and either an indoor or beach training session. Middle blockers training include Jen Joines Tamas (Milpitas, Calif.), Tracy Stalls (Denver), Alexis Crimes (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), Mekana Barnes (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) and Cheryl Weaver (Washington, D.C.). The outside hitter group includes Angie Pressey (Lake Mary, Fla.), Julie Rubenstein (Camarillo, Calif.) and Katie Kimmich (Lakeside, Calif.), who previously played for Team USA as Katie Wilkins. Setters in the fall training session are Courtney Thompson (Kent, Wash.), Nellie Spicer (Barrington, Ill.) and Bryn Kehoe (North Bend, Ohio). Heather Hughes (Fallbrook, Calif.) and Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio) are taking training reps at opposite during the fall training period. The libero position has Stacy Sykora (Burleson, Texas), Jessica Fine (Tarzana, Calif.), Holly Benson (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Jaimi Gregory (Westminster, Calif.) working out at American Sports Centers. McCutcheon is hopeful the current training group will expand during the second phase of the off-season training period starting in mid-January with the addition of current collegiate seniors.

McCUTCHEON AMONG SPEAKERS AT HP COACHES’ CLINIC: Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) will serve as one of the featured speakers at USA Volleyball’s Seventh Annual High Performance Coaches’ Clinic held Jan. 21-23, 2010, at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. The clinic theme is “Getting Up to Speed for London” in reference to the site of the 2012 Olympic Games. The 2010 USA Volleyball High Performance Coaches' Clinic costs $425 for United States citizens and $520 for non-United States citizens. The clinic cost includes instruction, material and room and board at the U.S. Olympic Training Center. In conjunction with the USA Volleyball High Performance Coaches' Clinic, the USAV Coaching Accreditation Program (CAP) will have additional CAP Level II on Jan. 20-21 and CAP Level III on Jan. 21-24 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center. The clinic is open to the first 100 coaches who complete the registration process, which can be started by click here.

AH MOW-SANTOS PART OF CLINIC: Robyn Ah Mow-Santos (Honolulu), a three-time U.S. Olympian and part of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team that won the silver medal at the 2008 Olympic Games, will be part of clinic coaching girls ages 9-18. She along with three-time AVCA All-American Tanya Fuamatu are hosting Advanced Girls’ Setters and Hitters Sessions from Dec. 2-30. For additional information, contact Melissa Lum at info@efchawaii.com or click here.

TRIVIA ANSWERS: 1. Libero Christine Tan of Minnesota; 2. Hugh McCutcheon will be presenting at the American Volleyball Coaches Association Annual Convention and attending the NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship semifinals and finals in Tampa, Fla.; 3. Penn State won its 100th consecutive match on Dec. 12 against California.