Women's U21 National Team celebrates

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 25, 2023) – The U.S. Women’s U21 National Team started a little slow but picked up speed and swept the Dominican Republic (25-16, 25-20, 25-14) on Thursday at the NORCECA Pan American Cup in Nogales, Mexico.

The U.S. Women (2-0) will finish pool play at 10 a.m. on Friday against Costa Rica (1-1). The two teams were supposed to have played each other on Tuesday, but the tournament had to be delayed due to travel issues caused by an erupting volcano near Mexico City.

The U.S. Women came out on top with a huge advantage in attacks 42-25, they held a comfortable 13-7 margin in blocks and a 3-0 in aces. The U.S. committed one less scoring error (17-18) than the Dominican Republic.

In the first two sets, the Dominican Republic kept the score close until the U.S. pulled away. In the first set, the teams were tied 13-13 before the U.S. pulled away. In the second set the tie was 15-15.

In the third set, the U.S. jumped out to a 5-1 lead and the Dominican Republic never recovered.

“We had to regroup after each set,” U.S. outside hitter Norah Sis said. “We knew we were starting out slow, but we did make it our goal to start fast in the last set and it all turned out well.

“The Dominican Republic is a really good defensive team. It took us a while to get the middles going, but after we got them in a good rhythm, I think our offense really picked it up.”

Sis and middle blocker Bre Kelley led the U.S. offense with 13 points each. Sis scored on 10 kills, two blocks and one ace. Kelley had eight kills and five blocks.

Opposite Devin Kahahawai added 10 points on nine kills and one ace. Middle Gabi Essix totaled nine points on a match-high six blocks, two kills and one ace.

Outside hitter Chloe Chicoine scored seven points on seven kills.

“We started off each set making a lot of errors and blew a few plays defensively, but we played well at the end of each set,” U.S. Head Coach Dan Fisher said. “Finally in the third set we started well defensively. I think our zone 4 attackers were very good, they were carrying a big load for us even if our middles weren’t going. They were serving a lot of balls to Norah, and she passed really well. I am very pleased with our serve-receive.”

Outside hitter McKenna Wutcherer played as a substitute and scored three points on three kills. Outside hitter Eva Hudson played as a substitute and scored two points on two kills. Middle Marianna Singletary scored one point with a kill.

Starts setter Rachel Fairbanks set the team to a .297 hitting efficiency. Libero Lauren Briseño was credited with 18 digs and five receptions. Sis led in receptions with nine and Chicoine had eight.

2023 Women’s U21 NORCECA Pan American Cup Roster
Name (Position, Height, Birth Year, Hometown, College, USAV Region)

2 Lauren Briseño (L, 5-7, 2003, San Antonio, Texas, Baylor, Lone Star)
3 Chloe Chicoine (OH, 5-10, 2004, Lafayette, Ind., Purdue, Hoosier)
5 Rachel Fairbanks (S, 6-0, 2003, Santa Ana, Calif., Pitt, Southern California)
7 Mckenna Wucherer (OH, 6-1, 2004, Brookfield, Wis., Univ. of Minnesota, Badger)
8 Eva Hudson (OH, 6-1, 2004, Fort Wayne, Ind., Purdue, Hoosier)
9 Norah Sis (OH, 6-2, 2003, Papillion, Neb., Creighton, Great Plains)
10 Alexis Stucky (S, 6-2, 2004, Laramie, Wyo., Univ. of Florida, Rocky Mountain)
13 Gabrielle Essix (MB, 6-3, Hoover, Ala., Univ. of Florida, Southern)
14 Devin Kahahawai (Opp, 6-4, 2004, Kailua, Hawaii, Univ. of Texas, Aloha)
15 Allie Sczech (Opp, 6-4, 2004, Sugar Land, Texas, Baylor, Lone Star)
16 Bre Kelley (MB, 6-4, 2003, Rockwall, Texas, Undecided. North Texas)
17 Marianna Singletary (MB, 6-4, 2004, Charleston, S.C., Texas, Southern)

Head Coach: Dan Fisher
Assistant Coaches: Josh Walker and Jessica Aschenbrenner
Team Leader: Jeffrey Wanderer
Athletic Trainer: Rebecca Duran
Performance Analyst: AJ Ruttenberg

Emmy Klika (L, 5-7, 2003, Novelty, Ohio, Pitt, Ohio Valley)
4 Caroline Bien (OH, 6-0, 2003, Overland Park, Kan., Univ. of Kansas, Heart of America)
6 Raven Colvin (MB, 6-1, 2003, Indianapolis, Ind., Purdue, Hoosier)
11 Mimi Colyer (OH, 6-3, 2004, Lincoln, Calif., Univ. of Oregon, Northern California)
12 Ella Swindle (S, 6-2, 2004, Columbia, Mo., Univ. of Texas, Heart of America)
18 Kennedy Martin (OPP, 6-6, 2005, Fort Mill, S.C., Univ. of Florida, Badger)

U.S. Women’s U21 Schedule for the Pan American Cup
(All times PT)
May 24 USA def Guatemala, 3-0 (25-8, 25-13, 25-14)
May 25 USA def Dominican Republic, 3-0 (25-16, 25-20, 25-14)
May 26 10 a.m.: 4 p.m.: USA vs. Costa Rica
May 27 Classifications and Semifinals
May 28 Classifications and Finals