Wednesday, 29 May 2024

Snow Volleyball: U.S. Teams Embark on Moscow Adventure

Visa’s iconic ad during the 2004 Super Bowl showcased the dedication and determination of beach volleyball players, Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor, as they braved the cold and snowy beach in preparation for the Olympics. Now, the United States is sending two volleyball teams, one men’s and one women’s, to compete in the 2019 CEV Snow Volleyball European Tour in Moscow. Let’s dive into the exciting journey ahead for these teams.

The U.S. Men’s Team: Led by Lloy Ball

Lloy Ball, a four-time Olympian and gold medal setter, will lead the U.S. Men’s Team. Having played six years with a professional team in Russia, Ball is no stranger to the country’s volleyball scene. His team consists of Tomas Goldsmith, Kevin Owens, and William Robbins, all based in Indiana and playing on Ball’s indoor semi-pro club, Team Pineapple.

The U.S. Women’s Team: Assembled by Karissa Cook

Karissa Cook, a professional beach volleyball player, has assembled the U.S. Women’s Team. The team includes beach players Emily Hartong, Katie Spieler, and Allie Wheeler. This talented group of athletes is ready to showcase their skills on the snow.

A New Challenge Awaits

While both teams have extensive experience in volleyball, playing on the snow is uncharted territory for them. Lloy Ball admits that they haven’t had much training in snowy conditions, as they primarily play on grass. However, his expectations remain high, acknowledging the unpredictable nature of this new discipline.

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Karissa Cook shares the same sentiment, mentioning that their regular training hasn’t included snow practice. However, the team has been mentally preparing for the challenge that lies ahead. Snow volleyball presents a unique opportunity for these athletes to test their adaptability and resilience.

The Game and Attire

Snow volleyball is played with three players on each side, with one substitute for each team. Unlike the bikini uniforms worn by Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor in the Visa ad, the players participating in the Moscow tournament will be clad in warm clothing and cleats, ensuring their comfort and safety during the games.

The Future of Snow Volleyball

Snow volleyball has gained attention on the global stage, with an exhibition held during the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games. The long-term goal is to establish a full-fledged World Tour, a World Championship in 2020, and a demonstration event at the 2020 Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne. This growing interest highlights the potential for snow volleyball to become a recognized sport worldwide.

Wild Card Entry

Both U.S. teams received wild card entries into the main draw of the Moscow tournament, skipping the qualifying rounds. This opportunity allows them to showcase their skills right from the start. The teams will strive for victory while prioritizing their safety and well-being. The playing surface in Moscow remains unknown, but their flexibility and adaptability will be key to their success.

Embracing the Russian Experience

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Aside from the competition, Lloy Ball is excited to reunite with friends in Russia. He plans to watch U.S. Men’s National Team libero, Erik Shoji, in action during his club team’s match in Moscow. The opportunity to witness high-level volleyball while immersing themselves in the Russian culture adds an extra layer of excitement to their journey.

Q: How many players are on each team in snow volleyball?

A: Snow volleyball is played with three players on each side, with one substitute for each team.

Q: What attire do snow volleyball players wear?

A: Unlike the bikini uniforms seen in some beach volleyball games, snow volleyball players wear warm clothing and cleats to ensure their comfort and safety on the snow.

The U.S. teams’ participation in the 2019 CEV Snow Volleyball European Tour in Moscow marks an exciting new chapter for these dedicated athletes. Despite the lack of experience in playing on snow, their determination and adaptability will surely shine through. As they compete, the U.S. teams will not only strive for victory but also embrace the unique experience of being immersed in the vibrant volleyball culture of Russia. Stay tuned to witness their incredible journey on the snow volleyball court.

For more information about snow volleyball and to stay updated on the U.S. teams’ progress, visit Alpinetgheep.