U.S. Women's National Team

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Sept. 20, 2023) – The U.S. Women’s National Team got a slow start but came back to beat Korea 3-1 (20-25, 25-17, 25-19, 25-17) on Wednesday at the FIVB Road to Paris Olympic Qualifier in in Łódź, Poland.

At the qualifier, eight teams are each playing seven round-robin matches over nine days. The top two teams will qualify for the 2024 Olympic Games.

The teams will take Thursday off before the U.S. Women (4-0) play Italy (4-0) at 11:30 a.m. on Friday. The U.S. Women are ranked No. 3 in the world and Italy is ranked No. 5.

In Wednesday’s first set, Korea led in kills (17-13) and aces (1-0) and scored seven points on U.S. errors while committing five. The U.S. led in blocks (2-0).

In the next three sets, the U.S. Women led in kills (43-31), blocks (9-5) and aces (5-1). Each team finished the match with 23 scoring errors.

“Korea threw a lot at us with their scrappy defense and tough serves,” opposite Jordan Thompson said. “We just need to settle in and find our rhythm after the first set.”

Thompson led all scorers with 26 points on a match-high 20 kills, a match-high three aces and a team-high three blocks.

“I think we had a solid game plan going into the match and we wanted to execute that well,” Thompson said. “Lauren (Carlini) set our offense up for success and I think our middles did a good job drawing the block so that I had some more space while I was attacking.”

Outside hitter Kelsey (Robinson) Cook added 13 points on 12 kills and one block. She also led the team in digs with 16 and in successful receptions with 12.

Outside hitter Jordan Larson and middle blocker Dana Rettke each totaled 12 points on nine kills, two blocks and one ace. Larson was credited with 13 digs.

Setter Lauren Carlini scored four points on three kills and one block. She set the U.S. to a .316 hitting efficiency.

Middle Haleigh Washington entered the match in the second set as the U.S. was battling back from a 12-9 deficit. She started the third and fourth sets and scored three points on a kill and two blocks. Starting middle Chiaka Ogbogu scored two points on two kills.

Libero Justine Wong-Orantes was credited with 14 digs and five excellent receptions.

Matches will be shown on VolleyballWorld.tv.

U.S. Women’s Roster for 2023 Road to Paris Olympic Qualifier

No. Name (Pos., Ht., Hometown, College, USAV Region)
4C Justine Wong-Orantes (L, 5-6, Cypress, Calif., Univ. of Nebraska, Southern California)
Ali Frantti (OH, 6-1, Spring Grove, Ill., Penn State, Great Lakes)
Morgan Hentz (L, 5-9, Lakeside Park, Ky., Stanford Univ., Pioneer)
Lauren Carlini (S, 6-2, Aurora, Ill., Univ. of Wisconsin, Great Lakes)
10 Jordan Larson (OH, 6-2, Hooper, Neb., Univ. of Nebraska, Great Plains)
11 Annie Drews (Opp, 6-4, Elkhart, Ind., Purdue Univ., Hoosier)
12 Jordan Thompson (Opp, 6-4, Edina, Minn., Univ. of Cincinnati, North Country)
15 Haleigh Washington (MB, 6-3, Colorado Springs, Colo., Penn State Univ., Rocky Mountain)
16 Dana Rettke (MB, 6-8, Riverside, Ill., Univ. of Wisconsin, Great Lakes)
22 Kathryn Plummer (OH, 6-6, Aliso Viejo, Calif., Stanford, Southern California)
23 Kelsey (Robinson) Cook (OH, 6-2, Manhattan Beach, Calif., Univ. of Nebraska, Southern California)
24 Chiaka Ogbogu (MB, 6-2, Coppell, Texas, Univ. of Texas, North Texas)
27 Avery Skinner (OH, 6-1, Katy, Texas, Baylor, Lone Star)
28 Ashley Evans (S, 6-1, Liberty Township, Ohio, Purdue, Ohio Valley)

Head Coach: Karch Kiraly
Assistant Coach: Tama Miyashiro
Second Assistant Coaches: Alfee ReftErin Virtue, Marv Dunphy
Physical Therapist/Athletic Trainer: Kara Kessans
Performance Analyst: Rianne Verhoek
Strength & Conditioning Coach: Brandon Siakel
Team Manager: Coley Pawlikowski
Team Doctor: Mark Hutchinson
Athletic TrainerJackie Chan
Nutritionist: Shawn Hueglin
Massage Therapist: Luis Hernandez
Mental Performance Coach: Sue Enquist
Performance Analyst: Matthieu Van Der Broeke

U.S. Schedule for the Road to Paris Olympic Qualifier
(all times PT)
Sept. 16 USA def Colombia, 3-0 (25-12, 25-12, 25-13)
Sept. 17 USA def Thailand, 3-0 (25-13, 25-16, 25-18)
Sept. 19 USA def Slovenia, 3-1 (25-13, 25-13. 20-25, 25-13)
Sept. 20 USA def Korea 3-1 (20-25, 25-17, 25-19, 25-17)
Sept. 22 at 11:45 a.m. USA vs Italy (world No. 5)
Sept. 23 at 8:30 a.m. USA vs Poland (world No. 7)
Sept. 24 at 8:30 a.m. USA vs Germany (world No. 12)