MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (July 3, 2017) – The USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championships (GJNC) showcased its oldest age group finals on Monday, and the athletes presented an early Fourth of July fireworks show of volleyball skills inside the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Playing in front of a crowded championship Court 19, TAV 17 Black earned the 17 Open title, the top divisional bracket for the age group. In addition, Mizuno Long Beach 17 Rockstar won the 17 National Division title, Houston Juniors 17 Elite captured the 17 USA Division crown, Northern Lights 17-2 earned the 17 American Division title and Zona 17-1 finished first in the 17 Patriot Division.

Sport Court is the official athletic flooring for the USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championships.

17 Open
The 17 Open Division semifinals was full of Texas-based teams with three of the four hailing from the Lone Star State. In the end, it was the team with the most to prove winning the title.

In the end, it was TAV 17 Black (Carrollton, Texas, North Texas Region) capturing the 17 Open title by rallying past AJV 17 Mizuno (Austin, Texas, Lone Star Region), 24-26, 25-16, 15-10 in the gold-medal medal. TAV 17 Black went undefeated in 11 tournament matches, though it had to win five times in the critical third-set tiebreaker.

TAV 17 Black has predominantly kept the same team intact the past three years, but the thrill of victory capped the season instead of losses. In 2016, TAV 16 Black won bronze at GJNC after failing to reach the semifinals in 2015 as TAV 15 Black. Adanna Rollins and many of her teammates who were also part of those earlier teams made sure gold was in the plans in Minneapolis.

“It meant a lot more because to win this event because we have been trying since 15s to win this all,” said Rollins, who was named the most valuable player of the 17 Open Division. “We finally got what we wanted.”

To reach gold, Rollins said it took a lot of work in the practice gym and knowing this could be the last time for many of the team to play together.

“I think we really worked hard in the gym more, and really came together,” Rollins said. “It was like this was our last time – lets go.”

Rollins said the apprehension of playing Austin Juniors again, a team they know well, was overcome by playing their own game.

“We were a little scared about it, but we just told ourselves to buy into the system, work hard and fight for this,” Rollins said.

TAV 17 Black reached the championship match by holding back Aspire 17 Rox (Tempe, Arizona, Arizona Region) 25-21, 20-25, 15-8 in the quarterfinal round before sweeping Texas Tornados 17 Mizuno (Houston, Texas, Lone Star Region) 25-14, 25-21 in the semifinals.

AJV 17 Mizuno, which ended the tournament with an 8-4 record, overcame a 1-2 record to start the first round pool play and a second-round pool play loss to reach the championship match. The Austin-based team defeated San Antonio-based SA Magic 17 Elite (Lone Star Region) 25-22, 25-17 in the quarterfinals and SG Elite 17 Roshambo (Los Angeles, Southern California Region) 17-25, 25-20, 15-11 in the semifinals. SG Elite 17 Roshambo and Texas Tornados 17 Mizuno won bronze medals as semifinalists.

17 National
Mizuno Long Beach 17 Rockstar (Hermosa Beach, California, Southern California Region) claimed the 17 National Division title by holding back EXCEL 17 National Red (Plano, Texas, North Texas) 25-20, 23-25, 15-11 in the gold-medal match. Mizuno Long Beach 17 Rockstar, which concluded the tournament with a 10-1 record, advanced to the championship match by edging Circle City 17 Purple (Plainfield, Indiana, Hoosier Region) 25-19, 16-25, 15-13 in the quarterfinals and Michio Chicago 17 National (Chicago, Great Lakes Region) 25-22, 24-26, 15-8 in the semifinals to avenge its only loss of the tournament. In total, Mizuno Long Beach 17 Rockstar needed to go the full three sets in seven of its 11 matches over the course of the four-day tournament. Kalyah Williams of Mizuno Long Beach 17 Rockstar was selected the 17 National Team most valuable player. EXCEL 17 National Red ended the tournament with an 8-3 record. It reached the championship match by ousting Vision 17 Gold (Los Gatos, California, Northern California Region) 25-18, 25-22 in the quarterfinals and slipping past OT 17 T. Rox Red (Orlando, Florida, Florida Region) 28-26, 15-25-16-14. The 17 National bronze medalists went to Michio Chicago 17 National and OT 17 T. Rox Red as semifinalists.

17 USA
Houston Juniors 17 Elite (Houston, Texas, Lone Star Region) captured the 17 USA Division by beating TAV 17 Blue (Carrollton, Texas, North Texas) 25-21, 15-25, 15-12 in the gold-medal match. Houston Juniors 17 Elite, which ended the tournament with a 10-1 record, advanced to the championship match by sweeping Dynasty 17 Black (Kansas City, Kansas, Heart of America Region) 25-21, 25-19 in the quarterfinals and Asics Willowbrook 17 Gold (Houston, Texas, Lone Star Region) 25-14, 25-22 in the semifinals. Houston Junior’s Hannah Overmyer was named the 17 USA Division most valuable player. TAV 17 Blue, which completed the tournament with a 9-2 record, moved into the championship match after defeating New Vision (Columbia, Missouri, Heart of America Region) 22-25, 25-16, 15-13 in the quarterfinals and Pgh Elite 17 Premier (Emsworth, Pennsylvania, Keystone Region) 25-20, 25-18 in the semifinals. Asics Willowbrook 17 Gold and Pgh Elite 17 Premier earned bronze medals by reaching the semifinals.

17 American
Northern Lights 17-2 (Burnsville, Minnesota, North Country Region) rallied to defeat SIVBC 17 Storm (Bellevue, Washington, Puget Sound Region) 17-25, 25-14, 16-14 in the 17 American Division gold-medal match. Northern Lights 17-2 finished the tournament with a 10-2 record, avenging one of the losses in the title match as SIVBC had won the head-to-head match in a first round pool match. Northern Lights 17-2 defeated St. Paul, Minnesota-based Kokoro Volleyball 17-1 (St. Paul, Minnesota, North Country) 25-23, 31-29 in a quarterfinal nail biter between neighboring clubs, then went on to defeat Momentum 17 Shane (Centennial, Colorado, Rocky Mountain Region) 25-19, 25-20 in the semifinals. Elizabeth Stark of Northern Lights 17-2 was named the 17 American Division most valuable player. SIVBC 17 Storm, which entered the gold-medal match undefeated in 10 matches before losing the final, defeated TAV Houston 17 Black (Houston, Texas, Lone Star Region) 25-20, 25-17 in the quarterfinals and PSVA 17 Black Gokhan (Florida Region) 25-19, 22-25, 16-14 in the semifinals. By advancing to the semifinals, Momentum 17 Shane and PSVA 17 Black Gokhan captured the bronze medals.

17 Patriot
Zona 17-1 (Tucson, Arizona, Arizona Region) played three matches the 17 Patriot Division on Monday’s gold bracket, and all three came down the third set. In the gold-medal match, Zona 17-1 edged LAVA North 17 Adidas (Valencia, California, Southern California) 25-19, 18-25, 15-12 to take home the title. Zona 17-1, which went undefeated in 12 matches, earned its ticket to the finals by rallying past Circle City 17 White (Plainfield, Indiana, Hoosier Region) 16-25, 25-15, 15-7 in the quarterfinals before stopping Rancho Valley 17 Select (San Bernardino, California, Southern California Region) 25-22, 22-25, 15-10 in the semifinal round. LAVA North 17 Adidas moved into the finals by defeating local team Northern Lights 17-B (Burnsville, Minnesota, North Country Region) 25-21, 25-23 in the quarterfinals and Colorado Juniors 17 Aneli (Colorado Springs, Colorado, Rocky Mountain Region) 25-14, 26-24 in the semifinals. Rancho Valley 17 Select and Colorado Juniors 17 Aneli earned bronze medals by reaching the semifinals.

USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships Results
11 Patriot: Gold – OTVA 11 S. Rox Red (Florida); Silver – Madfrog 11s N Blue (North Texas); Bronze – SG Elite 11 Roshambo (Southern California) and Abejitas (Puerto Rico)
12 National: Gold – Dynasty 12 Black (Heart of America); Silver – Boiler Juniors 12U (Hoosiers); Bronze – TAV 12 Black (North Texas) and Madfrogs 12s N Blue (North Texas)
12 American: Gold – Gainesville 12 Elite (Florida); Silver – ASICS MAVS 12-1; Bronze – Tstreet 12-Taylor (Southern California) and Skyline 11 Royal (North Texas)
13 Open: Gold – OTVA 13 S. Rox Red (Florida); Silver – Arizona Storm 13 Thunder (Arizona); Bronze – Absolute Black 13-1 (Northern California) and Madfrog 13s N Blue (North Texas)
13 National: Gold – Wave 13 Tammy (Southern California); Silver – Rockwood Thunder 13 Mizuno (Gateway); Bronze – Nebraska Elite 13 Thunder (Great Plains) and Rockford 13 Black (Great Lakes)
13 American: Gold – A2 13 Green (Ohio Valley); Silver – Gulfside 13U Navy (Florida); Bronze – JJVA Team Rox 13N Julie (Florida) and H Skyline 13 Royal (Lone Star)
14 Open: Gold – Tstreet 14-Carson (Southern California); Silver – TAV 14 Black (North Texas); Bronze – Rockwood Thunder 14 Mizuno (Gateway) and OT 14 S. Rox Red (Florida)
14 National: Gold – A5 Mizuno 14-2 Karen (Southern); Silver – A5 South 14-1 Trina (Silver); Bronze – Wildfire 14 Nike Albert (Florida) and AZ Sky 14 Gold Allegiance (Arizona)
14 USA: Gold – Mizuno Long Beach Rockstar M (Southern California); Silver – PVA 14 Elite (Heart of America); Bronze – Instinct 14 Leopards Wild GP (North Texas) and Mintonette Sports – m.42O (Ohio Valley
14 American: Gold – Tampa Elite U14 Columbia (Florida); Silver – Forza1 North 14 UA (Southern California); Bronze – HJV 14 Elite (Lone Stat) and Texas Pistols 14 Black (North Texas)
14 Patriot: Gold – Saddleback Valley Volleyball Club 14 Lisa (Southern California); Silver – Rancho Valley 14 Premier (Southern California); Bronze – Forza1 14 UA (Southern California) and Sunshine 14 Elite (Southern California)
15 Open: Gold – TAV 14 Black (North Texas); Silver – ASICS MAVS 15-1 (Heart of America); Bronze – Mintonette Sports – m.51 (Ohio Valley) and AVC Cleveland Rox 15N Harvey (Ohio Valley)
15 National: Gold – Kokoro Volleyball 15-1 (North Country); Silver – HPSTL 15 Royal (Gateway); Bronze – CC Force 151 Crossfire and Ka Ulukoa Black 15-1 (Aloha)
15 USA: Gold – LIVEWIRE 15 Adidas (Arizona); Silver – OP2 15-1 EP (Oklahoma); Bronze – SA Magic 15 Elite (Lone Star) and Rockwood Thunder 15 Navy (Gateway)
15 American: Gold – A4 Volley 15-Purple (Southern California); Silver – OT 15 T. Rox Red (Florida); Bronze – Tstreet 15-Curtis (Southern California) and A2 15 Green (Ohio Valley)
15 Patriot: Gold – Momentum 15 Elsa (Rocky Mountain); Silver – Forza1 15 UA (Southern California); Bronze – Forza1 North 15 UA (Southern California) and Wave 15 Dave (Southern California)
16 Open: Championship on July 4
16 National: Championship on July 4
16 USA: Championship on July 4
16 American: Championship on July 4
16 Patriot: Championship on July 4
17 Open: Gold – TAV 17 Black (North Texas); Silver – AJV 17 Mizuno (Lone Star); Bronze – Texas Tornados 17 Mizuno (Lone Star) and SG Elite 17 Roshambo
17 National: Gold – Mizuno Long Beach 17 Rockstar (Southern California); Silver – EXCEL 17 National Red (North Texas); Bronze – Michio Chicago 17 National (Great Lakes) and OT 17 T. Rox Red (Florida)
17 USA: Gold – Houston Juniors 17 Elite (Lone Star); Silver – TAV 17 Blue (North Texas); Bronze – Pgh Elite 17 Premier 1 (Keystone) and Asics Willowbrook 17 Gold (Lone Star)
17 American: Gold – Northern Lights 17-2 (North Country); Silver – SIVBC 17 Storm (Puget Sound); Bronze – Momentum 17 Shane (Rocky Mountain) and PSVA 17 Black Gokhan (Florida)
17 Patriot: Gold – Zona 17-1 (Arizona); Silver – LAVA North 17 Adidas (Southern California); Bronze – Colorado Juniors 17 Aneli (Rocky Mountain) and Rancho Valley 17 Select (Southern California)