Wednesday, 22 May 2024

Women’s National Training Team Update

The U.S. Women’s National Training Team has experienced exciting growth, with 26 talented athletes now preparing for the upcoming season. Following the recent Red-Blue intrasquad scrimmage, we have some interesting facts to share about the athletes who are currently training.

U.S. Women’s Training Roster

The U.S. Women’s National Team, ranked No. 2 in the world after their impressive bronze-medal finish at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, has 26 players training at the American Sports Centers in Anaheim. This is also where the U.S. Men’s National Team trains. Four new players have joined the team, including Lauren Gibbemeyer, who returns for her sixth season with Team USA. The other three players, Paige Tapp, Annie Drews, and Stephanie Niemer, have just finished their professional seasons in Puerto Rico and are joining the National Team for the first time.

The 2017 training roster will be further expanded as more players complete their commitments overseas or finish their academic year. It’s important to note that training rosters are subject to change on a weekly basis, as new athletes may be added or removed. It’s worth mentioning that all practices at the American Sports Centers are open to the public.

Player Highlights

Let’s take a look at some of the standout players on the U.S. Women’s National Training Team:

  • Inky Ajanaku (Middle, Rehabbing in USA, Stanford, Tulsa, Oklahoma)
  • Michelle Bartsch (Outside, Bolzano (Italy), Illinois, Maryville, Illinois)
  • Amanda Benson (Libero, Final Season in College, Oregon, Litchfield Park, Arizona)
  • Madi Bugg (Setter, NUC (Switzerland), Stanford, Apex, North Carolina)
  • Lauren Carlini * (Setter, Final Season in College, Wisconsin, Aurora, Illiniis)
  • Megan Courtney (Outside, Wroclaw (Poland), Penn State, Dayton, Ohio)
  • Lexi Dannemiller (Setter, Schweriner (Germany), Michigan, West Chester, Ohio)
  • Tori Dixon (Middle, Rehabbing in USA, Minnesota, Burnsville, Minnesota)
  • Annie Drews (Opposite, Caguas Criollas (Puerto Rico), Purdue, Elkhart, Indiana)
  • Lauren Gibbemeyer (Middle, Pomi Casalmaggiore (Italy), Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota)
  • Kristen Hahn (Libero, Did Not Compete, Iowa State, Cedar Rapids, Iowa)
  • Micha Hancock (Setter, Wroclaw (Poland), Penn State, Edmond, Oklahoma)
  • Madi Kingdon (Outside, IBK (Korea), Arizona, Phoenix, Arizona)
  • Molly McCage (Middle, Wiesbaden (Germany), Texas, Spring, Texas)
  • Liz McMahon (Opposite, Dresden (Germany), Illinois, Liberty Township, Ohio)
  • Kelly Murphy (Opposite, Henan (China), Florida, Wilmington, Illinois)
  • Sonja Newcombe (Outside, Sichuan (China), Oregon, Lake Arrowhead, California)
  • Stephanie Niemer (Outside, Caguas Criollas (Puerto Rico), Cincinnati, Erlanger, Kentucky)
  • Amber Rolfzen (Middle, Dresden (Germany), Nebraska, Papillion, Nebraska)
  • Kadie Rolfzen (Opposite, Dresden (Germany), Nebraska, Papillion, Nebraska)
  • Hannah Tapp (Middle, Schweriner (Germany), Minnesota, Stewartville, Minnesota)
  • Paige Minnesota (Middle, Juncos Valencianas (Puerto Rico), Minnesota, Stewartville, Minnesota)
  • Sarah Wilhite * (Outside Hitter, Final Season in College, Minnesota, Eden Prairie, Minnesota)
  • Aiyana Whitney (Outside Hitter, MTV Stuttgart (Germany), Penn State, Norwood, New Jersey)
  • Justine Wong-Orantes (Libero, Final Season in College, Nebraska, Cypress, California)
  • Carly Wopat (Middle, Toray (Japan), Stanford, Santa Barbara, California)
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Please note that Wilhite and Carlini will start on May 16, and Wopat will begin on May 17.

Training Team Notes

The U.S. Women’s National Team has an exciting mix of new faces and captivating storylines. Here are some interesting tidbits:

  • The team boasts two sets of twins who have joined the training team. Amber and Kadie Rolfzen, hailing from Papillion, Nebraska, and Hannah and Paige Tapp from Stewartville, Minnesota, are embarking on their first seasons with the U.S. Women’s National Team after successful collegiate careers at the University of Nebraska and University of Minnesota, respectively.
  • Five players on the team come from the University of Minnesota, with four of them playing middle. Along with outside hitter Sarah Wilhite, the quartet of Gopher middles who are part of the National training team are Tori Dixon, Lauren Gibbemeyer, and Hannah and Paige Tapp.
  • Out of the 26 players training in Anaheim, California, 16 are new additions to the team this season.
  • Lauren Carlini and Sarah Wilhite come into training with significant honors. Carlini was named the prestigious Sullivan Award winner for the best amateur athlete among all sports, and Wilhite was selected as the AVCA Division I Player of the Year in 2016.

Second Red-Blue Scrimmage Highlights

The U.S. Women’s National Team recently held its second Red-Blue intrasquad scrimmage of the season at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano, California. The Red Team emerged victorious, winning three out of the four sets with scores of 22-25, 25-18, 25-23, and 25-19. Noteworthy performances included Michelle Bartsch leading all scorers with 26 points, Sonja Newcombe’s impressive 18 points, and Madi Kingdon’s contribution of 15 points. Sarah Wilhite, the 2016 AVCA Division I Player of the Year, also made her mark with 13 points. It’s worth mentioning that 16 players scored at least one point in the match.

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  • When will the U.S. Women’s National Team face Brazil?
  • Where can I buy tickets for the USA Volleyball Cup?
  • When will the U.S. Women’s National Team play against Canada?
  • Where can I watch the Red-Blue scrimmages?


The U.S. Women’s National Training Team is gearing up for an exciting season. With a mix of seasoned veterans and promising new talent, there’s great anticipation for the upcoming matches and competitions. Stay tuned for more updates on the team’s progress and future events.

For more information about the U.S. Women’s National Training Team, visit Alpinetgheep.