COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Nov. 6, 2017) – Lauren Gibbemeyer won a gold medal in Italy and helped Novara remain as one of three undefeated teams in the Italian Serie A1 regular season. Find out how all the U.S. Women’s National Team players fared in their overseas pro leagues in the WNT Weekly Update.
TRIVIA QUESTION: Which U.S. Women’s National Team player had a chicken coop in her backyard with a chicken named Nugget that laid green eggs? As an added hint, this player’s uncle was a star on the television series Dukes of Hazzard.
ROBINSON WITH VAKIFBANK IN TURKISH LEAGUE: Outside hitter Kelsey Robinson (Manhattan Beach, California, Instagram, Twitter), a 2016 Olympic Games bronze medalist, is playing club volleyball with VakifBank in the Turkish professional league this winter. VakifBank edged Nilufer 25-18, 25-21, 23-25, 22-25, 15-8 on Oct. 31. Robinson got the start and provided 19 points in the victory, including 15 kills on 37 attacks, three blocks and an ace. She chipped in a 61 positive reception percent on 18 chances. In the second set alone, Robinson was credited with six kills on 10 swings and a block. VakifBank swept Ilbank 25-18, 25-7, 25-15 on Nov. 4 to stay unbeaten in six Turkish League matches. Robinson got her second straight start and had 10 points, highlighted by five aces on 12 serves, four kills and a block. She added a 54 positive reception percent on a team-best 13 chances. VakifBank (6-0) resumes Turkish League action on Nov. 15 against Eczacibasi. VakifBank is also competing in the European Champions League this winter and has a bye into the third round. They will meet Minchanka Minsk in a home-and-home series on Nov. 7 and Nov. 11.
LARSON, ADAMS WITH ECZACIBASI IN TURKISH LEAGUE: Outside hitter Jordan Larson (Hooper, Nebraska, Instagram, Twitter), a two-time Olympic Games medalist, and middle Rachael Adams (Cincinnati, Ohio, Instagram, Twitter), a 2016 Olympic Games bronze medalist, are playing professionally with Eczacibasi in the Turkish League for the 2017-18 season. Eczacibasi rallied past Ilbank 21-25, 25-13, 25-23, 25-10 on Oct. 31. Larson, who did not start the opening set, came off the bench to provide nine points with six kills on 14 swings and an block. She also handled 14 receptions with a 64 positive reception percent. Adams did not play in the match. Eczacibasi claimed a 25-8, 25-15, 25-19 victory over Canakkale on Nov. 4. Neither Larson or Adams played in the match as Eczacibasi overpowered Canakkale. Eczacibasi, 6-0 overall in the Turkish League, meets VakifBank on Nov. 15 during the seventh round followed by a Nov. 4 contest against Canakkale Bld. Eczacibasi begins the CEV Cup competition in late November as it has a home-and-home series with VC Oudegem in the 16th Finals Round.
AKINRADEWO WITH JAPAN V-LEAGUE’S HISAMITSU SPRINGS: Two-time U.S. Olympic medalist Foluke Akinradewo (Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Instagram, Twitter) is playing middle for Japan V.League’s Hisamitsu Springs this winter. Hisamitsu Springs swept Toray 25-16, 25-22, 25-16 on Nov. 4. Akinradewo tallied four kills on 10 swings, two blocks and an ace for seven points in the victory. Hisamitsu Springs blanked Hitachi Rivale 25-18, 25-15, 25-16 on Nov. 5 to stay undefeated in five V.League matches. Akinradewo notched seven kills on eight errorless attacks, three aces on 14 serves and a block for 11 points. Hisamitsu Springs takes on Ageo Medics on Nov. 11, followed by Toyota Auto Body on Nov. 12 in its next Japan V.League matches.
HILL WITH CONEGLIANO IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: Outside hitter Kim Hill (Portland, Oregon, Instagram), a 2016 Olympic Games bronze medalist, is playing for Imoco Volley Conegliano in the Italian Serie A1 this winter. Prior to its Italian Serie A1 regular season match, Conegliano lost to Igor Gorgonzola Novara 25-19, 25-27, 22-25, 25-23, 16-14 in the Italian Super Cup championship match on Nov. 1 on Novara’s home court. Hill tallied 13 points with 11 kills on 30 attacks, one ace and once block for 13 points. She added a 58 positive reception percent on 31 reception chances. Both teams were undefeated through the first three Italian Serie A1 regular season matches. In the Italian Serie A1, Conegliano blanked eighth-place Sab Volley Legnano (1-3, 3 points) 25-20, 25-20, 25-22 at home on Nov. 5. Hill scored a match-high 19 points with 15 kills on 29 attacks, three aces on 13 serves and a block. She added a 90 positive reception percent on 10 chances. Conegliano (4-0, 12 points), one four undefeated teams in the Italian Serie A1 and in second place on tiebreakers, challenges last-place Foppapedretti Bergamo (0-4, 0 points) on Nov. 15 in its next regular season match. In the European Champions League, Conegliano has advanced to the third round to play Sliedrecht Sport in a home-and-home series on Nov. 7 and Nov. 11.
GIBBEMEYER WITH NOVARA IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: U.S. Women’s National Team middle Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul, Minnesota, Instagram, Twitter) is playing her 2017-18 professional season with Igor Gorgonzola Novara in the Italian Serie A1. In a break from the Italian regular season, Novara captured the Italian Super Cup championship by rallying past Imoco Volley Conegliano 25-19, 25-27, 22-25, 25-23, 16-14 in a five-set battle on Nov. 1. Gibbemeyer scored four kills on 10 attacks and a block for five points in the victory. Both teams were undefeated in the Italian regular season through three matches. Novara started slow against 10th-place Lardini Filotrrano (1-3, 3 points), but bounced back for a 19-25, 25-15, 25-22, 25-19 victory on Nov. 5. Gibbemeyer was a sub in the fourth set and provided one kills on two attacks. Novara, in third place of the Italian League with a 4-0 record and 11 points, returns to action on Nov. 15 when it faces sixth-place Liu Jo Nordmeccanica Modena (2-2, 6 points). Novara is also participating in the European Champions League this winter and will have a bye into fourth round.
CARLINI WITH SCANDICCI IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: Setter Lauren Carlini (Aurora, Illinois, Instagram, Twitter), who played her first year with the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is playing her first pro season with Savino Del Bene Scandicci in the Italian Serie A1 this winter. Scandicci won its fourth straight match to start the Italian Serie A1 regular season following a 25-14, 25-16, 25-14 victory over 11th-place Il Bisonte Firenze (1-3, 3 points) on Nov. 5. Carlini set Scandicci to a 45 kill percent for the match with a .385 hitting efficiency. Scandicci, tied for first place in the Italian League standings with a 4-0 record and 12 points, looks to remain undefeated when it meets 10th-place Lardini Filotrrano (1-3, 3 points) on Nov. 12.
BARTSCH-HACKLEY, WILHITE WITH ITALY’S UNET E-WORK BUSTO ARSIZIO: Michelle Bartsch-Hackley (Champaign, Illinois, Instagram, Twitter) and Sarah Wilhite (Eden Prairie, Minnesota, Instagram, Twitter), both outside hitters for the U.S. Women’s National Team, are playing their 2017-18 pro season for Unet E-Work Busto Arsizio in the Italian Serie A1. Busto Arsizio defeated winless Foppapedretti Bergamo (0-4, 0 points) 25-14, 31-33, 25-11, 25-16 on Nov. 4. Bartsch-Hackley notched 20 points via 17 kills on 38 attacks with just two errors while scored three aces on a match-best 30 serves. She added an 80 positive reception percent on a team-leading 35 chances. Wilhite, a sub in the second and third sets, scored one kill on one attack and a block late in the third set before being taken off the court due to injury. To watch a replay of the match on ESPN3, click here. Fourth-place Busto Arsizio, 3-1 on the season with nine points, meets fifth-place Saugella Team Monza (2-2, 6 points) on Nov. 12 in its next Italian Serie A1 match. Busto Arsizio is also competing in the European CEV Cup and begins 16th Finals Round home-and-home competition in late November.
DIXON, HANCOCK WITH MONZA IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: Middle Tori Dixon (Burnsville, Minnesota, Instagram, Twitter), an alternate to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women’s Team, and U.S. Women’s National Team setter Micha Hancock (Edmond, Oklahoma, Instagram, Twitter) are playing for Saugella Team Monza in the Italian Serie A1 this winter after missing the 2016-17. Team Monza topped perennial Italian power Pomi Casalmaggiore 25-19, 20-25, 25-21, 25-13 on Nov. 4. Dixon charted 11 kills on 21 attacks with just one error for a .476 hitting efficiency while adding a block for 12 points. Hancock set the team to a 43 kill percent and .313 hitting efficiency. She added five kills on five errorless attacks in the victory. Team Monza (2-2, 6 points), now in sixth place, will look to go above .500 on the season when it meets fourth-place Unet E-Work Busto Arsizio (3-1, 9 points) on Nov. 12.
HANNAH TAPP WITH FIRENZE IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: Middle Hannah Tapp (Stewartville, Minnesota, Instagram, Twitter), who played her first season with the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is playing her pro season with Il Bisonte Firenze in the Italian Serie A1. Playing its third consecutive match against the three remaining undefeated teams in the league, Firenze lost to Savino Del Bene Scandicci (4-0, 12 points) 25-14, 25-16, 25-14 on Nov. 5. Tapp scored four kills on nine errorless attacks in the match. Firenze, in 11th-place with a 1-3 record and three points, will look to break the three-match losing streak on Nov. 11 against eighth-place Sab Volley Legnano (1-3, 3 points).
DREWS, NEWCOMBE WITH LEGNANO IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: Opposite Annie Drews (Elkhart, Indiana, Instagram, Twitter), who was a rookie with the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is competing for Sab Volley Legnano in the Italian Serie A1 alongside fellow U.S. Women’s National Team member Sonja Newcombe (Lake Arrowhead, California, Instagram, Twitter). Legnano lost to league-leader Imoco Volley Conegliano 25-20, 25-20, 25-22 on Nov. 5. Drews, earning her first start of the season, totaled a team-best 15 points on the strength of 12 kills on 41 attacks, two aces on 11 serves and a block. Newcombe, who started the second set as well as a sub in the first and third sets, provided five points on four kills and a block. She handled 14 receptions with a 79 positive percent. Legnano, now 1-3 overall with three standings points and in 11th-place place, faces Il Bisonte Firenze (1-3, 3 points) on Nov. 11 in its next Italian Serie A1 match.
WOPAT WITH BAIC MOTORS IN CHINA: Carly Wopat (Santa Barbara, California, Instagram, Twitter), a middle for the U.S. Women’s National Team, is playing for BAIC Motors in Beijing as part of the Chinese professional league. In the regular season opener, BAIC defeated Hebei 25-19, 25-23, 25-12 on Nov. 4 to even its record through two regular season matches. Wopat connected for eight kills on 11 attacks as part of a nine-point performance. BAIC returns to action on Nov. 4 against Hebei. BAIC returns to action on Nov. 11 against Yunnan Dianchi.
McMAHON WITH SOVERATO IN ITALIAN LEAGUE: U.S. Women’s National Team opposite Liz McMahon (Liberty Township, Ohio, Instagram) is playing for Volley Soverato in the Italian Serie A2 this winter. Lost to third-place Ubi Banca San Bernardo 25-17, 25-21, 18-25, 25-20 on Nov. 1 to end its five-match winning streak to open the season. McMahon scored eight kills on 36 attacks and a block for nine points in the loss. Soverato, now 5-1 with 13 points, will look to get back in the win column on Nov. 12 as it faces Sorelle Ramonda Ipag Montecchio.
KINGDON WITH KOREA V-LEAGUE’S IBK: Outside hitter Madi Kingdon (Hermosa Beach, California, Instagram, Twitter), a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, is playing her second consecutive professional season with IBK of the Korea V-League. IBK swept GS Caltex 25-22, 25-23, 25-16 on Oct. 31. Kingdon scored 19 kills on 39 attacks, one block and one ace for 21 points. She added 13 digs in the victory. IBK, in second place with a 3-1 record, plays fifth-place KGC (2-3) twice this week with matches on Nov. 7 and Nov. 11.
BUGG WITH DRESDNER IN GERMAN BUNDESLIGA: Setter Madi Bugg (Apex, North Carolina, Instagram), who was part of the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is competing in the German Bundesliga with Dresdner SC this winter. Dresdner swept VCO Berlin 25-17, 25-19, 25-21 on Nov. 1. Bugg got the start and led her team to a 52 kill percent for the match and .416 hitting efficiency. She also served two aces on 10 serves. Dresdner resumes German Bundesliga action on Nov. 8 against Stuttgart. Dresdner is competing in the CEV Cup this winter and begins 16th Finals Round home-and-home competition against Pays d’Aix Venelles VB on Dec. 13.
McCAGE WITH ALLIANZ MTV STUTTGART IN GERMAN BUNDESLIGA: Middle Molly McCage (Spring, Texas, Instagram), who was part of the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is playing professionally this winter with Allianz MTV Stuttgart in the German Bundesliga. Stuttgart was idle last week in the Bundesliga and will look to go 4-0 on Nov. 8 when it faces Dresdner SC. Stuttgart is also competing in the CEV Cup this winter and has a 16th Finals Round home-and-home series in late November against VK Up Olomouc.
DANNEMILLER WITH MULHOUSE IN FRENCH LEAGUE: Setter Lexi Dannemiller (West Chester, Ohio, Instagram, Twitter), a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is competing for ASPTT Mulhouse in the French League this winter. Mulhouse rallied past Evreux (2-2) 22-25, 25-23, 20-25, 25-23, 15-8 on Nov. 4 to remain tied at the top of the league standings. Dannemiller set Mulhouse to a 35 kill percent for the match while adding in for individual kills on six errorless attacks, two aces and a block for seven points. Mulhouse, one of five teams tied at the top of the standings with a 3-1 record and six points, faces Nantes (1-3) on Nov. 11 in its next French League match. Mulhouse will also compete in the European Champions League this year and has a bye into the main format, or fourth round.
BENSON WITH VANDOEUVRE NANCY IN FRENCH LEAGUE: Libero Amanda Benson (Litchfield Park, Arizona, Instagram, Twitter), who was part of the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is competing for Vandoeuvre Nancy in the French professional league this winter. Vandoeuvre Nancy edged Nantes 23-25, 25-22, 26-24, 18-25, 15-13 on Oct. 30 to start the week’s action. Benson handled 29 of the team’s 98 receptions with an 83 positive percent and helped the team to an overall 37 kill percent with her passing. However, Vandoeuvre Nancy lost to SF Paris St. Cloud 25-22, 25-23, 21-25, 25-18 on Nov. 4. Benson was credited with a 56 positive reception percent after handling 32 of the team’s 82 receptions. Her team converted 42 percent of its attacks into points during the match. Vandoeuvre Nancy, 2-2 overall and with five points in seventh place, faces fifth-place Le Cannet (3-1, 7 points) on Nov. 15 in its next league match.
AMBER ROLFZEN WITH BEZIERS IN FRENCH LEAGUE: Middle Amber Rolfzen (Papillion, Nebraska, Instagram), who was part of the U.S. Women’s National Team this past summer, is competing with Beziersin the French League this winter. Beziers topped Venelles 25-21, 25-21, 25-20 on Nov. 4. Rolfzen turned in four kills on nine attacks and a block for five points in the victory. Beziers (3-1, 9 points), which ranks atop the league standings, returns to action on Nov. 10 against fourth-place SF Paris St. Cloud (3-1, 8 points).
TRIVIA ANSWER: Carly Wopat had a chicken named Nugget who laid green eggs. Also, her uncle Tom Wopat played Luke Duke on the television series Dukes of Hazzard.