COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (April 1, 2008) – The U.S. Women’s National Training Team had its four-match win streak snapped with a 25-20, 28-26, 25-23, 25-20 loss to Jiangsu, a professional Chinese club team, Tuesday at Nanjing, China.
“Our team fought hard and never gave up,” U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach ‘Jenny’ Lang Ping said. “We came back from a 0-7 deficit in the second set to win and we made several good defensive plays, but were unable to convert. We are learning and will review the video before tomorrow's game and try to make some adjustments.”
Team USA falls to 4-3 on its eight-match exhibition tour of China. The Americans conclude their tour with a rematch with Jiangsu at Nanjing on April 2. Jiangsu won a recent league tournament and defeated the China Army team in one of the preliminary rounds. Team USA defeated the China Army twice on the current tour of China.
Team USA’s three-week training tour of China was designed to allow the coaches to evaluate a younger group of players in preparation for Olympic Games roster selections. The U.S. qualified for the 2008 Olympic Games, held Aug. 8-24 in Beijing, by finishing with a bronze medal at the 2007 FIVB World Cup.
Team USA started middle blockers Tracy Stalls (Denver) and Foluke Akinradewo (Plantation, Fla.), outside hitters Alix Klineman (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) and Destinee Hooker (San Antonio), opposite Heather Hughes (Fallbrook, Calif.) and setter Angie McGinnis (Fraser, Mich.) versus Jiangsu. Team captain Nicole Davis (Stockton, Calif.) served as the libero for the match. Angie Pressey (Lake Mary, Fla.) subbed into the first three sets, while Cassie Busse (Prior Lake, Minn.) subbed into the second set and started the fourth set in place of Hughes.
Klineman and Akinradewo, both Stanford University collegiate players, tied for team-high points with 14 apiece. Klineman scored 11 kills and three blocks, while Akinradewo collected nine kills on 19 swings to go with three blocks and two aces. Stalls contributed nine kills with only two errors on 18 attacks to go with three blocks and an ace for 13 points. Hooker provided 11 kills and two blocks for 13 points in the loss. Hughes charted seven kills and an ace for eight points. Busse tacked on five points with four kills and a block in limited action on the court. McGinnis tallied four setter dumps on seven attempts to round out the scoring. Davis recorded 18 digs and provided reception percents of 85 positive and 62 excellent.
The U.S. held a 12-7 block advantage over Jiangsu. The host enjoyed a 7-4 margin in aces and took advantage of 21 Team USA hitting errors (eight blocked, 13 other errors). Jiangsu converted 39 percent of its attacks into kills and limited the U.S. to a 36 percent.
“Jiangsu is a very good team and well coached with players who have played together for several years,” Lang Ping said. “Because they know each other so well, they can run very, very fast combinations. They prepared well for us, studying our earlier matches that were televised in China. Their opposite, #2, is a key player for them and they use her a lot in transition - tonight she scored 23 points against us.
Hughes scored on consecutive points with a kill and ace to give the U.S. an early 4-2 lead in the first set. Jiangsu reached the first technical timeout on a 3-0 run and 8-7 margin. Team USA returned to the lead a 10-9 after an Akinradewo kill. After falling behind 14-12, Akinradewo scored a kill and ace to knot the score at 14-all. Jiangsu used a 5-0 run that included back-to-back aces to net a 20-15 advantage. Hughes hammered consecutive kills to cut the gap to four at 22-18. Akinradewo put up a block followed by a Jiangsu miscue to close the deficit to three at 23-20. However, Jiangsu scored the final two points on a Team USA service error and attack error at 25-20.
Jiangsu bolted to a 9-1 lead in the second set, but Team USA answered right back with a 5-0 run that included four blocks to put the score at 9-6. Stalls picked up two blocks in the run, while Busse and Klineman added a block apiece. Klineman provided the other point in the run with a kill. After Jiangsu broke the scoring run, Team USA rattled off a 6-1 spurt to assume a 12-11 advantage as Stalls put down two kills, while Busse, McGinnis and Hooker all added a kill apiece. After trading points through 15-all, Busse and Stalls scored back-to-back kills to give the U.S. a two-point edge at 17-15. However, Jiangsu used a 3-0 run to regain the lead at 19-18. Klineman and Hooker tacked on consecutive kills to move the advantage over to the U.S. at 20-19. Jiangsu scored three unanswered points for a 22-20 advantage, only to have Hooker put up a block followed by a Busse kill to tie the set at 22-all. Jiangsu reached set point at 24-22 with an ace, but the U.S. saved both opportunities with a Klineman back-row kill and Hooker block. Team USA gained its first set point at 25-24 with a Jiangsu error. With the score tied 26-all after trading points, the U.S. gained third set point on a Jiangsu service error and put away the set at 28-26 with an Akinradewo ace. The U.S. out-blocked Jiangsu 7-2 in the second set.
The U.S. built a 3-0 lead to begin the third set with kills from Hughes and Klineman. However, Jiangsu got back into the set with a 4-1 run to knot the score and went into the lead at 7-6. The teams traded points until Jiangsu opened up a two-point cushion at 12-10, then stretched the gap to three points at 15-12. The Americans answered with three consecutive kills from Hooker to tie the score at 15-all. Team USA regained the lead at 17-16 with a Stalls block. However, the lead was short-lived as Jiangsu scored four of the next five points to take a 20-18 lead. Jiangsu gained four set-point opportunities at 24-20 and the U.S. saved three with kills from Akinradewo and McGinnis around a Klineman block at 24-23. Jiangsu closed the set at 25-23.
Jiangsu moved out to an early 4-0 lead to begin the fourth set, but Team USA rallied to knot the score at 6-all with two kills from Klineman and single scores from Busse, Stalls and Akinradewo. Jiangsu took an 8-6 lead into the first technical timeout. Leading 12-11, Jiangsu took a commanding seven-point lead at 18-11 with six unanswered points en route to a 25-20 victory.
For additional information on the U.S. Women’s National Team, check the team’s home page at http://www.usavolleyball.org/National/wnthome.asp. To follow the China Tour with all recaps, photo galleries and multimedia pages, view the China Tour page at http://www.usavolleyball.org/National/08ChinaTourHome.asp.
Team USA Tour of China Match Information
March 21: Team USA lost to Tianjin club at Tianjin (25-22, 25-21, 25-21)
March 22: Team USA lost to Tianjin club at WuQing (23-25, 21-25, 25-16, 25-21, 15-9)
March 24: Team USA def. Chinese Army Club at YiYang (21-25, 25-21, 25-19, 26-24)
March 26: Team USA def. Chinese Army Club at ChangShu (23-25, 25-17, 26-24, 21-25, 15-13)
March 28: Team USA def. ZheJiang in Hangzhou (19-25, 25-17, 27-25, 25-21 with 11-15 added fifth set)
March 29: Team USA def. ZheJiang in FuYang (15-25, 25-16, 25-22, 23-25, 15-10)
April 1: Team USA lost to Jiangsu in Nanjing (25-20, 26-28, 25-23, 25-20)
April 2: Team USA vs. Jiangsu in Nanjing, 7:30 p.m.
U.S. Women’s National Training Team Roster on China Tour
# - Name (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
1 - Juliann Faucette (OH, 6-2, San Diego, Calif., Texas)
2 - Destinee Hooker (OH, 6-4, San Antonio, Texas, Texas)
3 - Therese Crawford (OH, 5-11, Kalamazoo, Mich., Hawai'i)
4 - Alix Klineman (OH, 6-4, Manhattan Beach, Calif., Stanford)
5 - Angie Pressey (OH, 5-8, Lake Mary, Fla., California)
6 - Foluke Akinradewo (MB, 6-3, Plantation, Fla., Stanford)
7 - Tracy Stalls (MB, 6-4, Denver, Colo., Nebraska)
9 - Lauren Paolini (MB, 6-5, Ann Arbor, Mich., Texas)
11 - Heather Hughes (OPP, 6-2, Fallbrook, Calif., Loyola Marymount)
13 - Nellie Spicer (S, 5-9, Barrington, Ill., UCLA)
15 - Nicole Davis (L, 5-6, Stockton, Calif., Southern California)
16 - Lindsey Hunter (S, 5-10, Papillion, Neb., Missouri)
17 - Angie McGinnis (S, 5-11, Fraser, Mich., Florida)
18 - Cassie Busse (OPP, 6-1, Prior Lake, Minn., Minnesota)
Head Coach: “Jenny” Lang Ping
Assistant Coaches: Sue Woodstra, Li Yong, Tom Hogan
Technical Coordinator: Diane French