U.S. Women's Update: Collegiate All-Star Showcase

Jan. 05, 2015, 5:24 p.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Jan. 5, 2015) – This week’s U.S .Women’s Update includes updates on the U.S. Women playing abroad and details on collegiate players who are taking part in a two-week training cycle (Jan. 5-16) at USA National Team Center in Anaheim, Calif., under the direction of Karch Kiraly, head coach of the U.S. Women’s National Team.


  • USA Volleyball begins its winter training block with a roster mostly of collegiate athletes or individuals who just finished collegiate eligibility this past December. The training roster of aspiring U.S. Women’s National Team players includes opposites Jen Hamson (BYU), Alex Holston (Florida) and Karsta Lowe (UCLA); setters Lexi Dannemiller (Michigan) and Micha Hancock (Penn State); middle blockers Inky Ajanaku (Stanford), Rhamat Alhassan (Florida), Alaysia Brown (San Diego) and Haleigh Washington (Penn State); outside hitters Ali Frantti (Penn State), Falyn Fonoimoana (formerly of Southern California), Macey Gardner (Arizona State), Taylor Simpson (Colorado) and Nicole Walch (Florida State); and liberos Kayla Banwarth (Team USA, formerly of Nebraska), Kori Moster (Michigan State) and Stevie Robinson (formerly of Pepperdine and Southern California).
  • USA Volleyball will host two Collegiate All-Star Showcase matches involving members of its winter training block of athletes. The first match is scheduled for Jan. 9 at Irvine Valley College (5500 Irvine Center Drive, Irvine, Calif.), followed by a Jan. 16 contest at AIM Sports Complex (1718 Apollo Court, Seal Beach, Calif.). Both contests start at 7 p.m. PT. Cost is $5 for adults and free for 18-and-under.
  • The annual U.S. Women’s National Team Open Tryouts will be held Feb. 20-22 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. A record 245 athletes participated in last year’s tryout, and a similar number is expected in 2015. Athletes eligible to participate are those who have concluded college eligibility, current collegiate athletes born in the years 1987-1997 inclusive and high school athletes born in 1997 or earlier. The tryout will be identifying athletes for the U.S. Women’s National Team Program, the U.S. Collegiate National Team and the U.S. Women’s Junior National Team (athletes born in 1996 and 1997). The tryout fee is $225, which includes housing, meals, local transportation and tryout expenses. For athletes not staying at the OTC, the fee is $150. For additional details and how to register for the tryout, click here.
  • Christa Dietzen (Hopewell Township, Pa.) was featured in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Dec. 28 edition under the headline “Hopewell’s Harmotto a natural born leader”. She discusses how she feels the team has built a special camaraderie and team chemistry that helped allowed them to succeed at the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship. To read the article, click here.
  • Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich.) and Christa Dietzen took part in JamtheGym.com’s “Jamming in 5 Questions” segment. To read Glass’ responses, click here. To read Dietzen’s responses, click here.

HILL, KLINEMAN WITH NOVARA: Kim Hill (Portland, Ore., Twitter, Instagram), the most valuable player of the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship Italy 2014, and Alix Klineman (Manhattan Beach, Calif., Twitter, Instagram) are playing for Igor Gorgonzola Novara of the Italian Serie A1 this winter. Novara downed 11th-place Volley 2002 Forli (1-11, 4 points) 25-10, 21-25, 25-22, 25-18 on Dec. 26 to conclude the Italian Serie A1 first half. Klineman totaled 18 points with 17 kills on 43 attacks and a block. Hill tacked on 12 points with 10 kills on 30 attacks and two aces. Novara opened the second half strong with a convincing 25-14, 27-25, 25-9 home victory over fourth-place Pomi Casalmaggiore (8-4, 23 points) on Jan. 4. Hill scored 12 points on 10 kills via 24 attacks, one block and one ace to go with a 92 positive reception percent on 13 chances. Klineman started and played just the opening set in scoring two kills on five errorless attacks, two blocks and an ace. Novara (11-1, 32 points), in first place with a four-point lead over second-place Modena, returns to Italian Serie A1 action on Jan. 11 against 10th-place Il Bisonte Firenze (3-9, 11 points). Novara starts its CEV Challenge Cup 8th Final Round home-and-home series against Altemo Apeldoorn on Jan. 14, followed by a Jan. 21 match.

GLASS, ADAMS WITH CONEGLIANO: Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich., Twitter, Instagram), the best setter of the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship Italy 2014, and Rachael Adams (Cincinnati, Ohio, Twitter, Instagram) are playing for Imoco Volley Conegliano of the Italian Serie A1 this winter. Conegliano ended the first half of the Italian Serie A1 with a 25-23, 25-21, 25-21 victory over sixth-place Nordmeccanica Rebecchi Piacenza (7-5, 20 points) on Dec. 26. Glass set the team to a 41 kill percent while adding three individual kills on as many attacks, one ace and one block for five points. Adams tacked on seven points, including a match-high six blocks. On the opposite side of the net, American Arielle Wilson totaled eight points for Piacenza including seven kills on 13 errorless attacks. Conegliano opened the second half by rallying past 10th-place Il Bisonte Firenze (3-9, 11 points) 19-25, 25-17, 27-25, 25-23 on Jan. 3. Adams scored nine points with four kills on nine attacks and five blocks in the victory. Glass did not dress for the match. Conegliano (8-4, 24 points), now in third place, resumes action on Jan. 10 against seventh-place Unendo Yamamay Busto Arsizio (7-5, 18 points). Conegliano will meet Poland’s Atom Trefl in the CEV Cup 4th Final Round with home-and-home matches on Jan. 14 and Jan. 22.

GIBBEMEYER WITH CASALMAGGIORE: Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minn., Twitter, Instagram) is playing for Pomi Casalmaggiore of the Italian Serie A1 in 2014-15. Casalmaggiore downed second-place Liu Jo Modena (9-3, 28 points) 20-25, 25-21, 25-22, 25-22 on Dec. 26 to conclude the first half of the Italian Serie A1 schedule. Gibbemeyer turned in five kills on 12 errorless attacks to go with two blocks for seven points. However, Casalmaggiore could not sustain the momentum in the second half opener in losing to league-leader Igor Gorgonzola Novara (11-1, 32 points) 25-14, 27-25, 25-9 on Jan. 4. Gibbemeyer was credited with five points with four kills and block in the loss. Casalmaggiore (8-4, 23 points), now in fourth place in the Italian Serie A1, faces fifth-place Foppapedretti Bergamo (7-5, 23 points) on Jan. 11 in its next league match.

FAWCETT WITH KOREA EXPRESSWAY: Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio, Instagram) is playing in the Korea V-League with Korea Expressway this winter. Korea Expressway swept KGC Ginseng 27-25, 25-18, 25-15 on Dec. 30 to conclude the 2014 portion of the schedule. Fawcett contributed 25 points, all on kills from 61 attacks. Korea Expressway topped IBK Altos 27-25, 25-15, 15-19 on Jan. 4 as Fawcett totaled 26 points that included 24 kills on 49 attacks. On the opposite side of the net, American Destinee Hooker led IBK with 26 points.

DAVIS, LICTHMAN WITH Le CANNET: Two-time U.S. Olympic libero Nicole Davis (Stockton, Calif., Twitter, Instagram) and outside hitter Cassidy Lichtman (Poway, Calif., Twitter) are competing for Le Cannet in the French LAF this winter. In the French League, Le Cannet edged Nantes 25-22, 25-23, 23-25, 23-25, 16-14 on Jan. 3 as the league restarted in the new year. Lichtman scored 24 points with 23 kills on 60 attacks and one block. She added a 67 positive reception percent on 39 chances. Davis contributed an 82 positive reception percent on 22 chances in the victory. LeCannet moves into the CEV Challenge Cup 8th Final Round to face AON Pannaxiakos Naxos in a home-and-home series on Jan. 13 and Jan. 21.

FAUCETTE WITH RC CANNES: U.S. Women’s National Team opposite Juliann Faucette (San Diego, Calif., Twitter, Instagram) is playing with RC Cannes in France this winter, along with four-time U.S. Olympian Logan Tom and Carly Wopat. RC Cannes held off Vannes 25-22, 25-27, 25-16, 25-19 on Jan. 3 to open the 2015 portion of the French League. Faucette and Tom did not play, while Wopat charted 11 points with 10 kills on 18 attacks and an ace. Earlier, RC Cannes finished with the bronze medal in the 2th Women’s Top Volley International Tournament prior to the new year. RC Cannes defeated Zarechie-Odintsovo 25-21, 25-23, 25-23 and Galatasaray 25-23, 25-22, 25-14 in group play before falling to eventual winner Molico/Osasco 30-32, 21-25, 25-18, 25-23, 15-9 in the semifinals on Dec. 28. In the bronze-medal match, RC Cannes again defeated Galatasaray 18-25, 17-25, 25-13, 25-12, 15-11 on Dec. 29. Tom scored 13 points in the victory. In CEV Champions League, RC Cannes (3-0) will meet VakifBank Jan. 13.

MIYASHIRO WITH ALLIANZ MTV STUTTGART: Tama Miyashiro (Kaneohe, Hawaii, Twitter), a 2012 U.S. Olympic silver medalist, joined Allianz MTV Stuttgart of the German Bundesliga in mid-November. Stuttgart downed Aachen 23-25, 25-14, 25-14, 25-15 on Dec. 30. Miyashiro handled 13 of the team’s 58 service receptions with a 54 positive percent. Stuttgart pushed league-leader Dresdner SC to five sets before falling 25-19, 22-25, 25-23, 12-25, 15-4 on Jan. 3. Miyashiro was 38 positive percent on 21 of her team’s 89 service receptions. The loss is Stuttgart’s first since Miyashiro joined the team. Stuttgart (8-4) is in fourth place in the league with 26 points, just two points out of second place.

KREKLOW, JACKSON WITH DRESDNER: Molly Kreklow (Delano, Minn., Twitter, Instagram), who was in her first year with the U.S. National Team this past summer, and Cursty Jackson (Los Angeles, Twitter, Instagram) are playing for Dresdner SC of the German Bundesliga and in the European (CEV) Champions League. Dresdner swept Schweriner SC 27-25, 25-20, 27-25 on Dec. 30. Kreklow set the winners to a 48 kill percent for the match while adding two individual kills on three attacks, one block and one ace for four points. Jackson collected 11 points with nine kills on 16 attacks and two blocks. Bartsch matched her 11-point total with nine kills, one ace and one block. Dresdner opened the 2015 portion of its schedule with a hard-fought 25-19, 22-25, 25-23, 12-25, 15-4 victory over rolling Allianz MTV Stuttgart on Jan. 3. Jackson pocketed 11 points with nine kills and two aces while Kreklow set the team to a 42 kill percent. Bartsch contributed 16 points in the victory. Dresdner remains undefeated in the German Bundesliga at 13-0, three victories and eight points ahead of second-place VC Wiesbaden. In CEV Champions League, Dresdner (2-1) challenges Italy’s Unendo Yamamay Busto Arsizio on Jan. 14 in its next pool match.

THOMPSON, NATALIE HAGGLUND WITH VOLERO ZURICH: Courtney Thompson (Kent, Wash., Twitter, Instagram) and Natalie Hagglund (Encinitas, Calif., Twitter, Instagram) are playing for Volero Zurich of the Swiss League this winter. Volero is undefeated in the Swiss League at 13-0 and has been idle in league competition since Dec. 21. In the meantime, Volero played in the Gloria Cup, which included a 25-19, 21-25, 30-28, 23-25, 15-7 victory over Nova KBM Branik Maribor on Jan. 3. Volero followed with a 25-23, 22-25, 25-18, 25-19 victory over Azeryol Baku on Jan. 4. Prior to the New Year, Volero competed in the 26th Top Volley International Tournament, falling to Brazil’s Molico/Osasco 25-22, 19-25, 26-24, 18-25, 15-11 in the gold-medal match. Volero defeated Partizan Vizura Beograd 25-17, 23-25, 25-15, 25-16 to open group play, followed by a 25-17, 25-16, 25-15 victory over the eventual winners from Brazil. Volero topped Galatasaray 25-22, 25-22, 25-20 in the semifinals. In CEV Champions League action, Volero Zurich (2-1) will look to rebound from its loss to Eczacibasi as the two teams meet again on Jan. 13.

ROBINSON WITH BAIC MOTORS BEIJING: Kelsey Robinson (Bartlett, Ill., Twitter, Instagram) is competing for Beijing BAIC Motors in the Chinese League. BIAC Motors fell to Zhejiang 18-25, 25-23, 25-22, 25-13 on Dec. 23. Robinson charted 16 kills and two blocks for 18 points in the loss. She added digs and 11 excellent receptions on 14 chances. BIAC Motors absorbed a 25-18, 25-20, 25-23, 25-20 loss to Jiangsu on Dec. 27. Robinson tallied 12 points with eight kills on 29 attacks and four blocks. She was credited with 20 excellent receptions on 21 chances. BIAC Motors got into the win column on Dec. 30 with a 20-25, 25-21, 25-20, 25-15 victory over Fijian. Robinson produced 19 kills on 45 swings and an ace for 20 points. BIAC Motors was edged 3-2 (26-24, 26-24, 19-25, 16-25, 17-15) by Jiangsu on Jan. 3. Robinson pocketed 13 points with 11 kills on 17 attacks, one block and one ace. She also had 25 excellent receptions on 28 attempts. BIAC closes out the round robin on Jan. 6 against Fujian.

WEBSTER WITH PRAIA CLUBE: Bailey Webster (Baltimore, Md.) is competing for Praia Clube in the Brazilian Superliga this winter. Praia Clube topped Maranhao 25-16, 25-23, 25-17 on Dec. 21. Webster, in just her second pro start in the Super League, scored six points in the victory. Praia Clube (8-4, 20 points), which is in fifth place, starts the second half of the season on Jan. 6 against ninth-place Rio Do Sul (3-9, 9 points).

LARSON-BURBACH WITH ECZACIBASI: Jordan Larson-Burbach (Hooper, Neb., Twitter, Instagram), a 2012 U.S. Olympian and starting outside hitters, is playing for Eczacibasi Vitra of the Turkish League this winter. With the Turkish League on hiatus since Dec. 20, Eczacibasi is tied for second holding 29 points and two points behind league-leader VakifBank. Eczacibasi challenges fourth-place Nilufer BLD on Jan. 10 in the next league match. In CEV Champions League Pool D, Eczacibasi (3-0) takes a break from the CEV Champions League until a Jan. 13 match re-match with Volero Zurich.

HILDEBRAND WITH FENERBAHCE: Kristin Hildebrand (Orem, Utah, Twitter, Instagram) is playing for Fenerbahce of the Turkish League this winter. Fenerbahce is tied for second place in the Turkish League, which has been on hiatus since Dec. 20. Fenerbahce (29 points) faces eighth-place Sariyer Bld on Dec. 11 as the league resumes the 2015 portion of the schedule. In CEV Champions League action, Fenerbahce (3-0) will meet Nantes VB on Jan. 14 following the New Year hiatus.

HOOD WITH ILBANK: Regan Hood (Dallas, Texas, Instagram) is playing for Ilbank of the Turkish League in 2014-15, as well as the CEV Challenge Cup. In Turkish League action, Ilbank is in 10th place with six points as the league has been on holiday hiatus since Dec. 20. Ilbank resumes action on Jan. 11 against sixth-place Idman Ocagi. Ilbank begins the CEV Challenge Cup 8th Final Round home-and-home series against Russia’s Uralochka-NTMK with matches on Jan. 14 and Jan. 20.

NEWCOMBE WITH IDMAN OCAGI: Sonja Newcombe (Lake Arrowhead, Calif., Twitter, Instagram) is playing for Trabzon Idman Ocagi of the Turkish League this winter. Idman Ocagi is in sixth place in the Turkish League, which has been on hiatus since Dec. 20. Idman Ocagi resumes action on Jan. 11 against 10th-place Ilbank.

AKINRADEWO, DIXON WITH RABITA BAKU: Foluke Akinradewo (Plantation, Fla., Twitter, Instagram), a 2012 U.S. Olympic Games starter at middle blocker, and Tori Dixon (Burnsville, Minn., Twitter, Instagram) are competing for Rabita Baku in the Azerbaijan Super League and the CEV Champions League this club season. In CEV Champions League action, Rabita (1-2) will seek to avenge its upset loss to Agel Prostejov as the two teams meet again on Jan. 15.

LLOYD WITH LOKOMOTIV BAKU: Carli Lloyd (Bonsall, Calif., Instagram) is setting for Lokomotiv Baku this winter in the Azerbaijan Super League. In the CEV Cup, Lokomotiv will now play Russia’s Dinamo Krasnodar on Jan. 14 in the first match of the 4th Final Round home-and-home series.

MURPHY WITH AGEO MEDICS: Kelly Murphy (Wilmington, Ill., Twitter, Instagram) is competing in Japan this winter for Ageo Medics in the V-League’s top division. The Japan V-League comes out of holiday hiatus on Jan. 10 as fourth-place Ageo Medics (3-4, 11 points) play Hisamitsu Springs on Jan. 10 and against Hitachi on Jan. 11.

PAOLINI WITH HITACHI: Lauren Paolini (Ann Arbor, Mich., Instagram) is playing for Hitachi in the Japan V-League this winter. Hitachi (4-3, 10 points), ranked fifth in the V-League, plays NEC on Jan. 10 in the first V-League match after the holiday hiatus, followed by Ageo Medics on Jan. 11.