COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 14, 2019) – The U.S. Women’s National Sitting Volleyball Team returns to a familiar competition environment this weekend as it hosts Canada in a five-match exhibition series March 15-17 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver on featured courts during the Colorado Crossroads national junior qualifier.
- March 15: 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.
- March 16: 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.
- March 17: 9 a.m.
Bill Hamiter, head coach for the U.S. Women’s Sitting Volleyball Team, said these matches against Canada will provide game-like data to help evaluate players for future events in 2019.
“Canada is a great international partner for us,” Hamiter said. “We both use these matches to prepare our teams for competitions later in the year. We will be testing some new rotations and collecting stats on our players. Our players know they need to perform well in these matches to have a shot at the Parapan American Games roster later this year.”
The U.S. Women’s Sitting Team will have 10 players competing in Denver who were part of the 2016 Paralympic Games gold-medal team. Veterans include four-time Paralympic Games medalist Lora Webster (Point Lookout, N.Y.) at middle, along with three-time Paralympians Heather Erickson (Fayetteville, N.C.) and Katie Holloway (Lake Stevens, Wash.).
Annie Flood (Salem, Ore.), Sydney Satchell (Oklahoma City, Okla.) and Emma Schieck (Statesville, N.C.) will be playing in their first international matches with the U.S. Women’s National Sitting Team.
“These matches allow us to give quality playing time for our new and less experienced players,” Hamiter said. “Canada continues to move up in the World Rankings (#6) so we are looking forward to some high level play.”
The U.S. has hosted Canada during the last two Colorado Crossroads events. Overall, Team USA has held sitting volleyball matches at Crossroads in nine of the past 11 years. Large crowds of junior athletes and their parents have flocked to the sitting volleyball court during Crossroads to watch the top-ranked team in the world compete.
“It is always good to play in front of large crowds and that is especially true at the Crossroads Qualifier,” Hamiter said. “This event has been a huge support for our program and is wonderful for promoting our team.”
Team USA has already qualified for the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo and will be aiming for its second consecutive gold and fifth straight Paralympics with a medal. The Americans have also won silver at the last three ParaVolley World Championship events in 2010, 2014 and 2018.
The U.S. will hold autograph sessions after their matches with Canada where fans can interact directly with the top stars of the sitting volleyball game.