Thursday, July 23, 2015

National Team | Two more wins for USA in World Grand Prix and Pan Am Games

Miyashiro and Thompson excel in Omaha; Vansant has another big night in Toronto
  • USA def. Italy 3-1 (25-17, 25-14, 15-25, 25-18) [World Grand Prix Final Round]
  • USA def. Dominican Republic 3-1 (25-17, 22-25, 25-18, 25-22) [Pan Am Games semifinals]

USA libero Tama Miyashiro digs one of 15 balls in a 3-1 World Grand Prix victory over Italy

Former Washington All-Americans continued to excel as US National Team split squads once again picked up victories in the round-robin final round of the World Grand Prix and in the semifinals of the Pan Am Games.

In Omaha, Tama Miyashiro had 15 digs and was in an excellent serve receive groove as USA’s defense outlasted a scrappy Italian team 3-1 (25-17, 25-14, 15-25, 25-18). Christa Dietzen led the US with 13 kills. Courtney Thompson made long runs in each set of the setter/opposite double-sub, at one point connecting with Karsta Lowe for 4 straight kills.

Team USA, including Courtney Thompson (3) and Tama Miyashiro (5) celebrate a point against Italy.

Over five days of competition, each of the six World Grand Prix finalists play each other once. On Friday night, USA squares off against Russia, the only other undefeated (2-0) team in final round robin. Earlier Thursday, Russia handed Brazil its first loss of the 2015 World Grand Prix, a 3-0 pasting led by Nataliya Goncharova’s 16 kills and 8 blocks. Also Thursday, China beat Japan 3-0.

In Toronto, USA defeated Dominican Republic 3-1 (25-17, 22-25, 25-18, 25-22) in the Pan Am Games semifinals. The Americans were led by Nicole Fawcett (14 kills,) Krista Vansant (13 kills) and Rachael Adams (6 blocks.) On Friday, USA goes for the gold medal against Brazil, a 3-2 winner over Puerto Rico.


  1. ? on coaches. Who coaches the Pan Am team and who coaches the Grand Prix. Does Karch bounce around between both or does he stay with one group throughout a tournament?

  2. Good question. Karch and his primary assistants, Jamie Morrison and Tom Black, have been with the World Grand Prix team all this month. Pittsburg head coach Dan Fisher and new BYU head coach Heather Olmstead have been coaching the team in Toronto. In the USA gym, it's long been a tradition to have promising young college coaches spend time with the US National Team during the collegiate offseason.

  3. Another ? In round robin play, what determines the champion in case there is a 3 way tie at 4-1, and each suffered one loss against the others?

    1. Teams are awarded 3 points if they win 3-0 or 3-1. They get 2 points for winning 3-2, and 1 point for losing 2-3. If those numbers don't settle it, there are tiebreakers involving differential between points scored and points allowed. Easiest route to the gold: go 5-0!


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