Women's Update: Watch Americans in Champions League Crunch Time

By Bill Kauffman (bill.kauffman@usav.org) | Feb. 06, 2017, 1:24 p.m. (ET)

Kim Hill and her Turkish League VakifBank team will compete in European Champions League this week as the 4th Round double round-robin format moves into the second half crunch time. Find out how to watch the match and three other Champions League contests with Americans playing in the U.S. Women's National Team Weekly Update below.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (Feb. 6, 2017) – Several U.S. Women’s National Team members are in crunch time in their professional leagues overseas, and you can watch some of the matches live via video stream this week. For details on the streams and other team news, check out the U.S. Women’s National Team Weekly Update below.

WATCH AMERICANS IN EUROPEAN CHAMPIONS LEAGUE AND CEV CUP: The CEV European Champions League 4th Round has four matches being streamed live with Americans competing as the home-and-home round robin moves to the all-important second half phase to help determine which teams advance to the next round. All four matches can be watched live on laola1.tv.

DIXON DISCUSSES HER ROAD TO RECOVERY FROM ACL SURGERY: Just over a year ago, U.S. middle Tori Dixon (Burnsville, Minnesota, Twitter, Instagram) tore her ACL during a pro match in Japan that ultimately led to her missing out on a chance to compete in her first Olympic Games. Over the last 12 months she has rehabbed with a purpose to get back on the court, but also working on her mechanics to eliminate bad habits. To read a Question & Answer on her recovery to get back into the National Team gym, click here.

Related: U.S. Women's National Team Home Page

HILL WITH TURKEY’S VAKIFBANK: Outside hitter Kim Hill (Portland, Oregon, Instagram) a bronze medalist on the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team, returns this winter to play for Turkey’s VakifBank and in the European Champions League. In the Turkish regular season, VakifBank defeated Nilufer 25-19, 25-23, 25-13 on Feb. 5. Hill contributed 13 points in the victory with 11 kills on 20 attacks, one ace and one block. She added a team-leading 27 receptions with a 59 positive reception percent. VakifBank (14-0) takes on 11th-place Sariyer (3-10) in its next Turkish League contest on Feb. 12. In the European Champions League, VakifBank (3-0, 8 points) resumes action on Feb. 8 with a rematch against Dresdner SC (0-3, 0 points).


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A video posted by Rachael Adams (@rachaeladams) on

LARSON, ADAMS WITH TURKEY’S ECZACIBASI: Outside hitter Jordan Larson (Hooper, Nebraska, Twitter, Instagram) and middle Rachael Adams (Cincinnati, Ohio, Twitter, Instagram), both members of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team that won bronze in Rio, are playing for Eczacibasi of the Turkish League and as part of the European Champions League this winter. In the Turkish League, Eczacibasi was edged by third-place Fenerbahce 25-21, 18-25, 25-20, 23-25, 16-14 on Feb. 4. Larson scored 19 points with 17 kills on 31 swings, one block and one ace. She added a 67 positive reception percent on a team-high 24 chances. Due to the Turkish League foreigner limits, Adams did not suit for the match. Eczacibasi, which ranks second in the league standings with a 10-4 record, will take on fifth-place Canakkale Bld (9-5) on Feb. 11. In Champions League Pool D, Eczacibasi, now in second place in Pool D with a 2-1 record and seven points, returns to action on Feb. 8 with a rematch against Uralochka-NTMK Ekaterinburg (1-2, 3 points).

CRIMES WITH TURKEY’S SARIYER: Middle Alexis Crimes (Rancho Cucamonga, California, Instagram), an alternate to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team, is competing for Sariyer in the Turkish League this winter. Sariyer lost to eighth-place Halkbank (5-8) 15-25, 25-20, 25-13, 27-25 on Feb. 4. Crimes pocketed 12 points with eight kills on 15 swings and four blocks. Sariyer, in 10th place in the Turkish League regular season standings with a 3-10 record, takes on league-leader VakifBank (14-0) on Feb. 12 in its next Turkish League match.

ROBINSON, FAWCETT WITH ITALY’S CONEGLIANO: Outside hitter Kelsey Robinson (Bartlett, Illinois, Twitter, Instagram), a 2016 Olympic bronze medalist, and opposite Nicole Fawcett (Zanesfield, Ohio, Instagram) are playing in the Italian Serie A1 after transferring midseason from teams China and Turkey, respectively. Robinson, who was named MVP of the Italian League championship round leading Conegliano to the 2015-16 title, helped her side win in her return to the league with a 25-14, 26-24, 25-22 victory over Suditrol Bolzano on Feb. 2. Robinson came off the bench in the second set and started the third to provide six kills on 13 swings and two blocks for eight points. She added a 73 positive reception percent on 11 chances. Fawcett did not play in the match. Conegliano (13-2, 37 points), now in first place following the victory, returns to action on Feb. 12 as it faces second-place Pomi Casalmaggiore (13-2, 36 points). In the European Champions League, Conegliano will face Poland’s Chemik Police on Feb. 8 in Pool A. Conegliano is currently in second place in Pool A with a 2-1 record, while Chemik Police is in third place with a 1-2 record.

LLOYD, GIBBEMEYER WITH ITALY’S CASALMAGGIORE: Carli Lloyd (Bonsall, California, Instagram), a 2016 Olympic bronze medalist setter for Team USA, and middle Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minnesota, Twitter, Instagram) have returned to Italy to compete for Pomi Casalmaggiore in the Italian Serie A1 league and the CEV Cup. In the Italian League, Casalmaggiore lost to then-third-place Igor Gorgonzola Novara 23-25, 25-22, 28-26, 25-18 on Feb. 5. Lloyd set the team to a 39 kill percent and chipped in two individual kills and a block for three blocks. Gibbemeyer tacked on four points with three kills on 11 errorless chances and a block. Casalmaggiore (13-2, 36 points), which falls to second place after the loss, resumes Italian League action on Feb. 12 against first-place Imoco Conegliano (13-2, 37 points). In CEV Cup action, Casalmaggiore has now advanced to the 8th Final Round where it will have a home-and-home series with HPK Hameelinna with matches on Feb. 8 and Feb. 22.

BARTSCH WITH ITALY’S BOLZANO: Outside hitter Michelle Bartsch (Maryville, Illinois, Twitter), an alternate on the U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team, is competing for Sudtirol Bolzano in the Italian Serie A1 this winter. After falling to league-leader Pomi Casalmaggiore last week, Bolzano lost to defending Italian League champion Imoco Volley Conegliano 25-14, 26-24, 25-22 on Feb. 2. Bartsch did not play in the match. Bolzano (5-10, 18 points), now in eighth place, returns to the court on Feb. 12 as it faces 12th-place Club Italia Crai (2-13, 10 points).

AKINRADEWO WITH SWITZERLAND’S VOLERO ZURICH: Middle Foluke Akinradewo (Plantation, Florida, Twitter, Instagram), the Best Blocker in the 2016 Olympic Games after leading the U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team to a bronze medal, is playing for Volero Zurich in the Swiss League and in the European Champions League. In the Swiss League, Volero topped second-place Sm’Aesch Pfeffingen I 25-20, 25-14, 25-17 on Feb. 4. Volero followed that victory with a 25-15, 25-10, 25-9 victory over Volley Top Luzern on Feb. 5 to improve to 15-0 on the season. In the CEV Champions League, Volero (2-1, 7 points) will meet CS Volei Alba Blaj (0-3, 0 points) in its next Champions League Pool B match on Feb. 7.

HANCOCK WITH POLAND’S IMPEL WROCLAW: Setter Micha Hancock (Edmond, Oklahoma, Twitter, Instagram), who played for the U.S. Women during the 2016 Pan American Cup and set the tournament record for aces in a match and tournament, is playing for Poland’s Impel Wroclaw in the Orlen Liga. In a break from the regular season, Wroclaw faced Grot Budowlani Lodz in the Polish Cup semifinals on Feb. 4 and lost 20-25, 15-25, 28-26, 25-20, 16-14. Hancock set the team to a 47 kill percent for the match and added five individual kills on eight swings and two aces on 15 serves for seven points. American teammate Megan Courtney was credited with 18 points via 17 kills on 36 swings and a block. She handled 43 of the team’s 96 service receptions with a 65 positive reception percent. Wroclaw, in second place in the regular season with a 14-4 record and 45 points, will challenge fourth-place Tauron MKS Dabrowa Gornicza (12-6, 33 points) on Feb. 11 in its next league match.

KIRALY HEADLINES HP COACHES’ CLINIC: U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Karch Kiraly will be one of five headline presenters for the 2017 USA Volleyball High Performance Coaches’ Clinic held Feb. 9-11 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. Others headline presenters include:

  • Bill Hamiter: head coach for U.S. Women’s Sitting Team which won gold at the 2016 Paralympic Games and silver at the 2008 and 2012 Paralympic Games
  • Matt Fuerbringer: assistant coach on U.S. Men’s National team which won bronze at the 2016 Olympic Games
  • Keegan Cook: head coach for University of Washington women’s volleyball team; head coach for 2016 U.S. Collegiate National Team-China Tour; 2015 AVCA Pacific North Region Coach of the Year
  • Beth Launier: head coach for University of Utah women’s volleyball team; head coach for 2016 U.S. Collegiate National Team-Europe Tour; 500+ career college victories

U.S. WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM OPEN TRYOUT: The U.S. Women’s National Team will hold its annual open tryout March 3-5 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. The three-day tryout is expected to draw 240 athletes with hopes of earning a spot in one of the U.S. Women’s National Team programs. Athletes who have come out of the tryout include Kim Hill, the 2014 FIVB World Championship most valuable player. This tryout is open to current college-age athletes and older born in the years 1989-1999* inclusive (Women’s Junior age group athletes born in 1988 or 1999 AND NOT currently enrolled in college must be invited to attend this tryout) AND high school athletes born in 1997 or earlier. Athletes born before 1988 must contact USA Volleyball at indoorhp@usav.org for approval. For more information and registration links click here.