COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 7, 2019) – The U.S. Women’s National Team improved to 2-0 in the Pan American Cup Pool B after the Americans swept Trinidad & Tobago 25-14, 25-15, 25-13 on Sunday in Chiclayo, Peru.
Outside hitter Roni Jones-Perry (West Jordan, Utah) led Team USA with 14 points via 12 kills on 19 errorless attacks, one block and one ace. Opposite Danielle Cuttino (Indianapolis, Indiana) chipped in 12 kills on 20 attacks and a block for 13 points.
“Tonight’s match was fun,” Jones-Perry said. “It was good to be on the court wearing the USA jersey and playing next to the girls on the team.”
Jones, along with Team USA’s six other starters, were competing in their first international tournament match. She said the energy on the court was positive.
“I think that the energy was good,” Jones Perry said. “We didn’t get too high, but we definitely maintained good energy throughout. We trusted each other and we communicated well.”
“Tonight we started an entirely new lineup from Saturday’s match versus Colombia,” added Rob Browning, who is serving as the U.S. head coach at the Pan Am Cup. “All seven of our starters tonight made their international debut with the senior national team, and they did not disappoint in any way. This entire team has been working hard in preparation for this event, and we were all excited to watch these young athletes take the floor and represent USA so well. We will all remember this match for its historical significance as these amazing athletes go on to represent USA in what we hope is a long and successful career for all of them.”
Outside hitter Kathryn Plummer (Aliso Viejo, California) tallied 10 kills on 15 attacks and a block for 11 points. Middle Brionne Butler (Kendleton, Texas) contributed 11 points with seven kills on 10 attacks, a match-high three blocks and an ace for 11 points. Middle Jenna Rosenthal (Fond du Lac, Wisconsin) pocketed four kills on six attacks, one block and one ace for six points. Setter Madison Lilley (Overland Park, Kansas) rounded out the scoring with two blocks.
Libero Gabby Curry (Buford, Georgia) handled a team-high 13 receptions with a 46 positive reception percent. Both Plummer and Jones-Perry were 50 percent positive on reception. Plummer had a team-high eight digs, while Curry added four digs.
Lilley set Team USA to a 63 kill percent and .507 hitting efficiency (45-9-71). The American defense held Trinidad & Tobago to a 27 kill percent and .036 hitting efficiency (15-13-56).
The Americans held a 9-3 advantage in blocks and a commanding 45-15 margin in kills. Both teams had three aces.
“I think our blocking, our defense overall, but mostly our blocking was really good,” Jones Perry said. “We did a good job at spreading our offense and attacking space. One thing we can do better is serving.”
Team USA opened the first set with an 8-3 lead and controlled the entire set to a 25-14 victory as the Trinidad & Tobago was able to score on its own serve just twice. In the second set the Americans charged out to a 6-1 advantage and led by as many as 12 at 22-10 before settling into a 25-15 victory. After the U.S. bolted a 9-2 lead in the third set, Trinidad & Tobago closed to four at 9-5. Team USA used an 8-0 run to push its advantage to 19-7 and finished the set at 25-13.
“Even given our youth and inexperience, our team tonight was more experienced than Trinidad & Tobago’s team and we overpowered and outplayed them from the first whistle.,” Browning said. “It was a good opportunity for us to push ourselves in some areas where we feel we need improvement.”