Women's National Team

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 24, 2021) – The U.S. Women’s National Team is headed to its third straight final of the FIVB Volleyball Nations League after defeating Turkey in Thursday’s semifinal, 3-0 (25-21, 25-23, 25-20) in Rimini, Italy.

The U.S. Women (15-1) will play longtime rival Brazil (14-2) in Friday’s final at 10:30 a.m. PT. The match will be shown LIVE on VolleyballWorld.tv. The U.S. Women beat Brazil in the third match of the preliminary round, 3-1 (25-17, 25-19, 23-25, 25-22).

The U.S. Women defeated Brazil in the 2019 VNL final, 3-2. In 2018, the U.S. beat Turkey 3-2 in the first ever VNL final.


Although it was a U.S. sweep, Thursday’s match saw the U.S. Women battle back from deficits of 9-16 and 17-22 in the second set thanks to some key substitutions by Head Coach Karch Kiraly.

“Special props to Annie Drews and Kelsey Robinson who came in and gave us a great lift and helped us break (Turkey’s) will a little bit,” Kiraly said. “When we came back and stole that second set, that was not easy. We’ve been on the other side of that situation before.”

In the middle of the second set with the U.S. trailing 8-14, Kiraly brought in Drews for Jordan Thompson at opposite and Robinson for Jordan Larson at outside hitter. Drews led the U.S. in scoring with nine points on seven kills and two aces. Robinson scored seven points on seven kills.

“We had some girls come off the bench who really helped us make a momentum change,” U.S. setter Jordyn Poulter said. “We homed in on a couple of our first and second touches and put a little more service pressure on them and were able to pull out the second set.

“We took that momentum into the third set and that helped us be successful in the end.”

Turkey led the U.S. in kills (42-40) but committed 24 scoring errors that helped the U.S Women, who had 14 scoring errors. The U.S. Women edged Turkey in blocks (7-6) and aces (4-3).

Besides Larson and Thompson, Kiraly started Poulter at setter, Michelle Bartsch-Hackley at outside hitter, Foluke Akinradewo Gunderson and Haleigh Washington at middle blocker and Justine Wong Orantes at libero.

Akinradewo and Bartsch-Hackley each finished with eight points. Washington finished with seven. Thompson and Poulter each scored five points and Larson finished with two.

Poulter set the team to a .321 hitting efficiency and Wong Orantes was credited with 14 digs and five successful receptions. Bartsch-Hackley was credited with 11 successful receptions.

Kiraly was happy with the 3-0 victory.

“We’re playing the finals in about 22 hours,” he said. “It gives everyone more time to recover.”

Prior to the match, the six Olympic alternates left Rimini, leaving the U.S. Women with their 12-woman Olympic roster.

“I told them after the game, ‘We’re 23 strong,’” Kiraly said. “That’s been our core group since early last year. We were 18 strong here in VNL and our six alternates went home so now we’re 12 strong, but we’re carrying all 23 with us.”

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster for June 24

No. Player (Position, Height, Hometown, College)
1 Micha Hancock (S, 5-11, Edmond, Okla., Penn State Univ.)
2 Jordyn Poulter (S, 6-2, Aurora, Colo., Univ. of Illinois)
4 Justine Wong-Orantes (L, 5-6, Cypress, Calif., Univ. of Nebraska)
10 Jordan Larson (OH, 6-2, Hooper, Neb., Univ. of Nebraska)
11 Annie Drews (OPP, 6-4, Elkhart, Ind., Purdue Univ.)
12 Jordan Thompson (OPP, 6-4, Edina, Minn., Univ. of Cincinnati)
14 Michelle Bartsch-Hackley (OH, 6-3, Champaign, Ill., Univ. of Illinois)
15 Kim Hill (OH, 6-4, Portland, Ore., Pepperdine, Univ.)
16 Foluke Akinradewo Gunderson (M, 6-3, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Stanford Univ.)
22 Haleigh Washington (M, 6-3, Colorado Springs, Colo., Penn State Univ.)
23 Kelsey Robinson (OH, 6-2, Manhattan Beach, Calif., Univ. of Nebraska)
24 Chiaka Ogbogu (M, 6-2, Coppell, Texas, Univ. of Texas)

Head Coach: Karch Kiraly
Assistant Coaches: Luka Slabe, Erin Virtue, Tama Miyashiro
Technical Coordinator: Jeff Liu
Athletic Trainer: Kara Kessans
Team Manager: Jimmy Stitz

May 25: USA def Dominican Republic, 3-0 (25-20, 25-21, 25-12)
May 26: USA def Canada, 3-0 (26-34, 25-15, 25-10)
May 27: USA def Brazil 3-1 (25-17, 25-19, 23-25, 25-22)

May 31: USA def Serbia, 3-0 (25-20, 25-16, 25-12)
June 1: USA def Netherlands, 3-0 (25-22, 25-15, 25-18)
June 2: USA def Thailand, 3-0 (25-17, 25-14, 25-16)

June 6: USA def Germany, 3-0 (25-23, 25-13, 25-13)
June 7: USA def South Korea, 3-0 (25-16, 25-12, 25-15)
June 8: USA def Italy, 3-1 (25-18, 25-21, 20-25, 25-16)

June 12: USA def Belgium, 3-0 (25-9, 26-24, 25-20)
June 13: USA def Japan, 3-0 (25-23, 26-24, 25-20)
June 14: USA def Turkey, 3-1 (25-21, 23-25, 25-15, 25-14)

June 18: USA def Poland, 3-0 (29-27, 29-27, 25-14)
June 19: USA def Russia, 3-1 (25-21, 25-27, 25-23, 25-15)
June 20: China def USA, 3-0 (25-10, 25-20, 25-17)

June 24: Brazil def Japan, 3-1 (25-15, 25-23, 29-31, 25-16)
USA def Turkey, 3-0 (25-21, 25-23, 25-20)

June 25: 8 a.m. Bronze: Turkey vs Japan
10:30 a.m. Gold: USA vs Brazil