Release pulled from USA Volleyball's website.
USA Volleyball Names 12-Player U.S. Collegiate National Team-Japan Tour Roster
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 25, 2019) – USA Volleyball is proud to announce its 12-player U.S. Women’s Collegiate National Team – Japan Tour roster comprised of current collegiate players.
Setters named to the CNT-Japan Tour are Mica Allison (University of Illinois, White Heath, Illinois) and Saige Kaahaaina-Torres (University of Utah, Honolulu, Hawaii). The two opposites selected are Taylor Bannister (LSU, Missouri City, Texas) and Kenzie Koerber (University of Utah, Chino Hills, California). The libero will be CC McGraw (University of Minnesota, Prior Lake, Minnesota).
Middles selected to the elite CNT-Japan squad are Heather Gneiting (Brigham Young University, Pleasant Grove, Utah), Taylor Morgan (University of Minnesota, Blaine, Minnesota) and Katie Myers (University of Maryland, Westerville, Ohio). The outside hitters named to the roster are Brooke Botkin (University of Southern California (Houston, Texas), Dani Drews (University of Utah, Sandy, Utah), McKenna Melville (UCF, Egan, Minnesota) and Jacqueline Quade (University of Illinois, Fort Wayne, Indiana).
The squad will tour May 19-30 in Japan where it will have a series of training sessions and matches. The tour is unique in that the U.S. will play against Nippon Sport Science University, one of the best collegiate volleyball teams in Japan, as well as Japan’s Women’s 20 and World University Games teams. Below is the tentative match schedule:
- May 22: vs. Nippon Sport Science University in Tokyo
- May 23: vs. Japan Women’s U20 Team at NEC in Kawasaki
- May 24: vs. Japan World University Games Team in Kawasaki
- May 25: vs. Japan World University Games Team at NEC in Kawasaki
- May 26: vs. Japan Women’s U20 Team at Japan National Training Center in Kita, Tokyo
- May 28: vs. Okayama Seagulls in Okayama
Heather Olmstead, head coach of the Brigham Young University women’s volleyball team, will serve as the CNT-Japan Tour head coach.
“I’m excited to represent USA this summer along with 12 student-athletes from across the country,” Olmstead said. “This roster is full of experience and skill at every position. We’re looking forward to competing at a high level and experiencing the Japanese culture.”
The CNT-Japan Tour will have Jaylen Reyes and Krista Vansant as assistant coaches. Reyes is currently assistant coach at University of Nebraska, while Vansant is an assistant coach with Indiana University. TJ Read, the director of volleyball operations at UCF, will serve as the program’s technical coordinator.
Drews is the only player with experience in the CNT program as she was part of the 2018 CNT-Detroit roster. Allison helped lead the U.S. Women’s Junior National Team to gold at the 2018 NORCECA Women’s U20 Continental Championship after playing in the 2017 FIVB Girls’ U18 World Championship as part of the U.S. Girls’ Youth National Team.
Athletes were selected through the U.S. Women’s National Team Open Tryouts held March 1-3 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
USA Volleyball will announce the CNT-Anaheim roster within the next two weeks. The CNT-World University Games roster was announced on March 13. All CNT programs are considered second tryouts for the U.S. Women’s National Teams under NCAA rules.
- Jacqueline Quade and Taylor Bannister were also selected to participate in the U.S Women’s National Team spring training block being held March 16-23 at the team’s training facility in Anaheim.
- Only two rising seniors are on the CNT-Japan Tour roster: Taylor Morgan of Minnesota and Jacqueline Quade of University of Illinois.
- Three CNT-Japan players are from the state of Minnesota: CC McGraw (Prior Lake), McKenna Melville (Eagan) and Taylor Morgan (Blaine). McGraw and Morgan were part of University of Minnesota’s tour of Japan earlier this month.
- Jacqueline Quade and Heather Gneiting (BYU) helped lead their collegiate teams to the 2018 NCAA Division I Collegiate Volleyball Championship semifinals.
- Taylor Bannister’s father Ken played five seasons in the NBA after being a 7th round draft pick of the New York Knicks.
Name (Position, School, Height, College Eligibility Remaining, Hometown, Youth Club)
Mica Allison (S, University of Illinois, 6-1, 3, White Heath, Illinois, Illini Elite)
Taylor Bannister (OPP, LSU, 6-5, 2, Missouri City, Texas, Texas Premier Volleyball Club)
Brooke Botkin (OH, University of Southern California, 6-1, 2, Houston, Texas, AVA of Texas)
Dani Drews (OH, University of Utah, 6-0, 2, Sandy, Utah, Club V)
Heather Gneiting (M, Brigham Young University, 6-4, 3, Pleasant Grove, Utah, Club V)
Saige Kaahaaina-Torres (S, University of Utah, 6-0, 3, Honolulu, Hawaii, Ku’ikahi Volleyball Club)
Kenzie Koerber (OPP, University of Utah, 6-3, 2, Chino Hills, California, TStreet Volleyball)
CC McGraw (L, University of Minnesota, 5-9, 3, Prior Lake, Minnesota, Minnesota Select)
McKenna Melville (OH, UCF, 6-1, 3, Eagan, Minnesota, Northern Lights)
Taylor Morgan (M, University of Minnesota, 6-0, 1, Blaine, Minnesota, Kokoro Volleyball)
Katie Myers (M, University of Maryland, 6-2, 3, Westerville, Ohio, Mintonette)
Jacqueline Quade (OH, University of Illinois, 6-2, 1, Fort Wayne, Indiana, Munciana Samuria)
Head Coach: Heather Olmstead (Brigham Young University)
Assistant Coach: Jaylen Reyes (University of Nebraska), Krista Vansant (Indiana University)
Technical Coordinator: TJ Read (UCF)