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Volleyball Canada – Report courtesy of USA Volleyball

LINCOLN, Neb. (Jan. 7, 2016) – The host United States defeated Canada 25-18, 25-18, 25-15 Thursday evening to start the 2016 Women’s NORCECA Olympic Qualification Tournament at the Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, Neb, USA.
 
USA had seven players with at least five points. Nicole Fawcett scored a team match-high 14 points, while Karsta Lowe totaled 10 points as a sub in all three sets. Jordan Larson and Kelsey Robinson, who both played collegiate volleyball at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, added 10 and nine points respectively. Tori Dixon punched in seven points.
 
Canada was led by Tabitha Love and Lucy Charuk chipped in eight points each.
 
The U.S. offense overwhelmed Canada with a 57-30 kill advantage. Canada held a 7-3 margin in blocks, while the Americans had a 2-0 edge in aces.
 
USA will face Puerto Rico (0-1) on Friday on the second of three round-robin competition days, while Canada looks to stay alive for the Olympic Games bid to the winner on Friday versus Dominican Republic (1-0). The second- and third-place teams in the final standings move into the last chance Olympic Games qualification tournaments in May.
 
USA Head Coach Karch Kiraly: “We used a little different substitution patterns that many other international teams use. We look for little fractions of points of advantage. So we will often use all six of our available subs. Four of those six are used in what we call the double-sub where we bring in Courtney Thompson and Karsta Lowe, and they did a very nice job. We also brought Megan Easy in as she has had a good training camp, particularly good at the net hitting and blocking. We want to squeeze out a fractional advantage out. Some people talk about using a defensive specialist across the back row, well we offensive specialist, or OSed her across the front row.”
 
USA Captain Christa Dietzen: “First off, hats off to Canada as they played great defense which is a struggle for a lot of our opponents. Their defenders did a phenomenal job and put pressure on us. We talked about throwing a lot of good a them. I thought we kept our patience in the match. Was it our best match, no. But I think we have to find ways if we are operating at a C level or B-minus, we have to find ways to win.”
 
Canada’s Head Coach Arnd Ludwig: “We played good, we had a really good defense. Our serving wasn’t as good as I was hoping for. Our passing was same thing, we can pass a little bit better. For us it was a good start to the tournament and there are some things we can build confidence on for the next two games… Adjustment number one is to get a tougher serve. And adjustment number two is to get less aggressive in our passing because we had a lot of good passes, good positioning, but overpasses. The U.S. is the top ranked team and they took advantage of that.”
 
Canada’s Captain, Brittney Page: “USA is a very strong program with a lot of depth. There is a good atmosphere here and they were excited to come out and play hard. We knew we had to play solid to catch them at all. They’re a team you can’t afford to make mistakes with because they’re so solid and they don’t make mistakes. There were moments where we beat ourselves and that’s what hurt us. We have to take the good out of this and keep fighting because it’s just the start of the tournament.”

 
NORCECA Olympic Qualification Tournament Details

Jan. 7-9, 2016  Lincoln, Neb. (Pinnacle Bank Arena)
For live streaming see www.usavolleyball.org

Jan. 7
Dominican Republic vs. Puerto Rico, 5 p.m. CT  3-1
USA vs. Canada, 7 p.m. CT  3-0

Jan. 8
Canada vs. Dominican Republic, 5 p.m. CT
USA vs. Puerto Rico, 7 p.m. CT

Jan. 9
Canada vs. Puerto Rico, 5 p.m. CT
USA vs. Dominican Republic, 8 p.m. CT
 
Team Canada Roster
Janie Guimond – Bécancour, QC
Lisa Barclay – Brandon, MB
Brittney Page – Vernon, BC
Kyla Richey – Robert’s Creek, BC
Jaimie Thibeault- Sylvan Lake, AB
Tabitha Love- Dauphin, MB
Marisa Field- Kelowna, BC
Jennifer Cross – Scarborough, ON
Lucille Charuk- Tsawwassen, BC
Rebecca Pavan – Kitchener, ON 
Shanice Marcelle – Victoria, BC 
Jennifer Lundquist – Surrey, BC
Dana Cranston – Fort St. John, BC
Megan Cyr – St Andrews, MB
 
Staff
Arnd Ludwig – head coach
Ryan Ratushniak – asst coach
Scott Koskie – asst coach
Mandy Los – therapist
Shane Smith- statistician
Nichole Mailey – manager
 
For more info, see www.usavolleyball.org or use hashtag #VBOlympicQualifier