Photo (Ledoux on the left, in white) by USA Volleyball's Bill Kauffman
For three days this past weekend, nearly 175 athletes (including three current Long Beach State athletes) were put to the test by U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team Head Coach Hugh McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) at the squad’s open tryouts held Feb. 19-21 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.
At the end of the weekend, McCutcheon was happy with what he saw on the court after each player had four different training sessions.
“I thought the tryout was successful,” McCutcheon said. “It was wonderfully well-attended. There were a lot of great volleyball players in the gym all at the same time for us to evaluate.
The tryout involved 174 athletes – the most ever at the annual open tryout – being evaluated by McCutcheon (Christchurch, New Zealand) and assistant coaches Karch Kiraly (San Clemente, Calif.) and Jamie Morrison (Dana Point, Calif.). The 49ers in attendance were Ashley Lee, who worked with the setters, Jocelyn Neely, who worked out at opposite, and Caitlin Ledoux, who joined the outside hitters.
The coaching staff was able evaluate 46 middle blockers, 41 outside hitters, 38 liberos, 30 setters and 19 opposites representing 81 different colleges. Athletes were competing for spots on the U.S. Women’s Volleyball National Team program and the U.S. Women’s Senior A2 teams. The U.S. Women’s National Team program is open to athletes who have concluded their college eligibility and who wish to train full-time. This program could begin as early as February 2010, or when an athlete’s scholastic or professional club season has concluded. Athletes who will have remaining collegiate eligibility may still participate in the program with participation beginning May 2010 or when their scholastic calendar ends.
Athletes in college with collegiate eligibility remaining for the 2010 season and not selected to the USA Women’s National Team may be invited to participate in the USA Senior A2 Team. This program is tentatively scheduled to take place in Phoenix from May 24 through June 2. A projected 24 athletes will be invited to participate in the program, which will include training and competition in the 2010 USA Adult Open Championships in the Open Division from May 29-June 1. USA Volleyball considers the event as the National Championship for the sport of volleyball in the United States.
“The amount of talent and support that the colleges have provided bodes well for the U.S. Women’s National Team program,” McCutcheon said.
According to Tom Pingel, USA Volleyball’s managing director of Indoor High Performance Program, the U.S. Women’s National A2 Teams will be announced in mid-March once all confirmations to participate have been secured.
From USA VBall reports