Manager, Media Relations and Publications
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 22, 2007) –
Team USA (2-0), ranked seventh in the latest FIVB world ranking, will challenge 2006 nemesis Dominican Republic tomorrow at 4 p.m. CDT. Last year, Dominican Republic won two of three contests against the U.S., including a three-set victory in the bronze medal match of the 2006 Pan American Cup. However, the Americans won the final meeting last year between the two teams, a four-set win during the FIVB World Grand Prix on Aug. 27 in Macau.
"(Dominican Republic) is in good shape," U.S. Women's National Team Head Coach 'Jenny' Lang Ping said. "They have players with experience, but we look forward to playing strong teams."
The U.S. started captain Robyn Ah Mow-Santos (Honolulu) at setter, Tracy Stalls (Denver, Colo.) and Jen Joines (Milpitas, Calif.) at middle blocker, Katie Wilkins (Lakeside, Calif.) and Cynthia Barboza (Long Beach, Calif.) at outside hitter, and Cassie Bussie (Prior Lake, Minn.) at opposite. Candace Lee (Eugene, Ore.) is Team USA’s designated libero for the tournament. Marcie Hampton (Gainesville, Fla.) entered the contest in the second set and started the third set. Both Lindsey Hunter (Papillion, Neb.) and Katie Olsovsky (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) subbed into the third set.
Stalls paced the Team USA attack with 11 points on six kills, three blocks and two aces while hitting .455 on the day. Barboza landed 10 points on five kills, four aces, a block and a match-high five digs. Joines contributed eight points with five kills on six attacks and three blocks. Wilkins added seven points on three kills, two blocks and two aces. Hampton charted six points in a reserve role with five kills on 10 swings and a block. Busse gained a half-dozen points on five kills and a block, while Olsovsky hit .500 with two kills on four attacks in the third set. Hunter came off the bench to add a kill on her only attack. Lee tallied four digs on 12 chances, while accepting 18 of Team USA’s 38 service receptions.
“We wanted to concentrate on our side of the net, especially serving and passing,” Lang Ping said. “We had trouble yesterday, but we adjusted today. We need to play better with each match we play.”
Ah Mow-Santos, who provided 20 assists to lead the U.S. to a .294 team attack percentage, echoed her coach’s thoughts on the progress of the team against Costa Rica.
“Yesterday, we had a lot of errors serving and passing,” Ah Mow-Santos said. “So today we were trying to focus on our side of the net and limiting errors and increasing our intensity.”
Team USA held an 11-4 advantage in blocks, while winning the service portion of the match as well. The U.S. scored eight points off aces and limited Costa Rica to just one ace. The Americans held a significant 15-4 advantage in digs to allow for second-chance points.
The U.S. open the match with a 3-0 advantage, only to see Costa Rica rebound and tie the score at 5-all. Team USA responded with six unanswered on the serve of Katie Wilkins and two points from Stalls. The American lead reached double-digits at 18-8 as Barboza created two points on a kill and ace during a 4-0 run. Wilkins scored consecutive points on a kill and ace at 23-12 en route to finishing the set at 25-14.
Costa Rica held its first lead of a set at 2-1 early in the second set, but the advantage was short-lived as the U.S. surged to a 3-2 advantage. After trading points through an 8-all tie, Team USA embarked on a 6-1 run as Stalls provided three kills and a block to give the Americans a 14-9 lead. Costa Rica broke the spurt with two quick points to narrow the deficit to 14-11. The U.S. squelched any possibility of a comeback with nine unanswered points with three scores coming off the hands of Hampton for a commanding 23-11 lead.
Team USA continued its impressive scoring runs with the first seven points of the third set as Barboza nailed three aces in the spurt. Costa Rica would not get closer than six points the rest of the set as Barboza closed out the period with a kill and block at 25-13.
Verania Willis paced Costa Rica with eight points on six kills and two blocks, while Karen Cope Charles chipped in six kills. Angela Willis charted five points with four kills and her team’s only ace.
“We are not used to playing that fast,” Costa Rica captain Verania Willis said. “We tried improving on things from yesterday, but the good, tall players made it tough today.”
Later today in Pool A, the Dominican Republic faces Trinidad & Tobago at 4 p.m. CDT, while host Mexico faces Argentina at 8 p.m. CDT.
In Pool B, Canada defeated Uruguay 25-16, 25-17, 25-13 as Emely Cordonier led the Canadian attack with 10 points to start the day. Later, defending champion Brazil takes on Peru at 2 p.m. CDT, while Puerto Rico challenges Cuba at 6 p.m. CDT.
Although the 2007 Pan American Cup does not have direct bearing on 2008 Olympic qualification, it will have an impact on the 2008 season. Based on the final standings of the Pan American Cup, the top three teams from NORCECA (North, Central America and Caribbean Volleyball Federation) and the top team from the CSV (South American Confederation) qualify for the 2008 FIVB World Grand Prix.
For Team USA’s press kit for the Pan American Cup, go to http://www.usavolleyball.org/media/national/07PanAmCupPressKit.pdf.
For additional information on the tournament, go to http://www.norceca.org/2007%20VI%20Pan-American%20Women’s%20Volleyball%20Cup.htm.
U.S. Women’s National Team Roster for VI Pan American Cup
Name – Pos, Ht, Hometown, College
3 - Marcie Hampton (OH, 6-1, Gainesville, Fla., Florida)
6 - Tracy Stalls (MB, 6-4, Denver, Colo., Nebraska)
7 - Laura Tomes (MB, 6-2, Sioux City, Iowa, Oklahoma)
8 - Katie Wilkins (OH, 6-4, Lakeside, Calif., Pepperdine)
9 - Jennifer Joines (MB, 6-3, Milpitas, Calif., Pacific)
10 - Cynthia Barboza (OH, 6-0, Long Beach, Calif., Stanford)
11 - Robyn Ah Mow-Santos (S, 5-9, Honolulu, Hawai'i, Hawai'i)
13 - Katie Olsovsky (OPP, 6-3, Hermosa Beach, Calif., Southern California)
14 - Candace Lee (L, 5-7, Eugene, Ore., Washington)
15 - Courtney Thompson (S, 5-8, Kent, Wash., Washington)
16 – Lindsey Hunter (S, 5-10, Papillion, Neb., Missouri)
18 - Cassie Busse (OPP, 6-1, Prior Lake, Minn., Minnesota)
Head Coach: “Jenny” Lang Ping
Assistant Coaches: Sue Woodstra, Gen Kawakita
Technical Coordinator: Diane French
Team Manager: Joan Powell
Medical Support: Emery Hill, Jr.
Sixth Annual Pan American Cup * June 21-29 * Colima, Mexico
Pool A Standings
Dominican Republic 1-0
Trinidad & Tobago 0-1
Costa Rica 0-2
Pool A Matches (Times CDT)
June 21: Dominican Republic def. Costa Rica, 25-21, 25-22, 25-10
June 21: USA def. Argentina, 17-25, 25-20, 25-23, 25-16
June 21: Mexico def. Trinidad & Tobago, 25-10, 25-19, 25-8
June 22: USA def. Costa Rica, 25-14, 25-15, 25-13
June 22: Trinidad & Tobago vs. Dominican Republic, 4 p.m.
June 22: Argentina vs. Mexico, 8 p.m.
June 23: Trinidad & Tobago vs. Argentina, noon
June 23: Dominican Republic vs. USA, 4 p.m.
June 23: Mexico vs. Costa Rica, 8 p.m.
June 24: USA vs. Trinidad & Tobago, noon
June 24: Costa Rica vs. Argentina, 4 p.m.
June 24: Mexico vs. Dominican Republic, 8 p.m.
June 25: Trinidad & Tobago vs. Costa Rica, noon
June 25: Dominican Republic vs. Argentina, 4 p.m.
June 25: Mexico vs. USA, 8 p.m.
Pool B Standings
Puerto Rico 0-1
Pool B Matches (Times CDT)
June 21: Cuba def. Uruguay, 25-13, 25-11, 25-14
June 21: Peru def. Canada 25-21, 21-25, 31-29, 16-25, 16-14
June 21: Brazil def. Puerto Rico, 35-33, 25-23, 25-19
June 22: Canada def. Uruguay, 25-16, 25-17, 25-13
June 22: Peru vs. Brazil, 2 p.m.
June 22: Puerto Rico vs. Cuba, 6 p.m.
June 23: Brazil vs. Uruguay, 10 a.m.
June 23: Canada vs. Cuba, 2 p.m.
June 23: Peru vs. Puerto Rico, 6 p.m.
June 24: Puerto Rico vs. Uruguay, 10 a.m.
June 24: Canada vs. Brazil, 2 p.m.
June 24: Cuba vs. Peru, 6 p.m.
June 25: Peru vs. Uruguay, 10 a.m.
June 25: Puerto Rico vs. Canada, 2 p.m.
June 25: Brazil vs. Cuba, 6 p.m.
June 27: 6A vs. 6B, 2 p.m. (11th Place Match)
June 27: 5A vs. 5B, 4 p.m. (9th Place Match)
June 27: 2A vs. 3B, 6 p.m. (Quarterfinal)
June 27: 2B vs. 3A, 8 p.m. (Quarterfinal)
photo Getty Images
photo Getty Images