International Volleyball

Olympians Hancock, Thompson, Washington join USA’s VNL Arlington roster

Olympians Hancock, Thompson, Washington join USA's VNL Arlington roster

Haleigh Washington attacks last month for Scandicci against Conegliano/Filippo Rubin, LVF photo

An Arlington overhaul.

The USA womenโ€™s 14-player roster for the second round of Volleyball Nations League includes eight players who did not compete in the first round.

The Americans open play Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. Central at UT Arlington against Canada.

The roster includes setter Micha Hancock; libero Morgan Hentz; opposite Jordan Thompson; middles Dana Rettke, Asjia Oโ€™Neal and Haleigh Washington; and outsides Kathryn Plummer and Khalia Lanier.

Returning from the first week, when the USA went 2-2, setter Jordyn Poulter, outsides Ali Frantti and Avery Skinner, libero Justine Wong-Orantes and outside Jordan Larson (featured here last month).

Ogbogu (Coppel) and Oโ€™Neal (Southlake), who played at Texas, and Skinner (Katy), who played at Kentucky and Baylor, all grew up in Texas.

Ogbogu is one of seven on the roster who won gold in the Tokyo Olympics along with Hancock, Poulter, Wong-Orantes, Larson, Thompson and Washington.

Washington, Plummer, Rettke and Lanier were late arriving to the teamโ€™s training center in Anaheim because their Italian season was still in progress. Hentz was in the gym but then returned to the Atlanta Vibe for the Pro Volleyball Federation semifinals. Hancock and Thompson were training with the team before the first round.

The USA takes Wednesday and Thursday off before playing Bulgaria on Friday, Poland on Saturday and defending champion Tรผrkiye on Sunday. Volleyball World noted that team captain Eda Erdem, who did not olay for Tรผrkiye in the first round, will be in Arlington.

Also worth noting from Volleyball World that โ€œstar setter Joanna Woล‚osz, who didnโ€™t play in Tรผrkiye, will now be part of the team for their matches against Serbia, Poland, Germany and the United States. The playmaker also missed the entire 2023 edition of the VNL and will reappear in the tournament after two years.โ€

In the first round in Rio de Janiero, the USA defeated Thailand in four sets, lost to China and Brazil in four setes each, and then swept the Dominican Republic.

Canada, which hasnโ€™t been to the Olympics since 1996, has high hopes of clinching a spot in Paris. Coach Shannon Winzerโ€™s roster likely will include some former NCAA players, incuding Alexa Gray (BYU) and Layne Van Buskirk (Pittsburgh). Gray had 69 kills in Canadaโ€™s first four matches.

Standings, schedule

Here are the standings after the first round, including match record and sets…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Volleyballmag.comโ€ฆ