The four women who make up the U.S. Women’s National Beach Volleyball team and the fourteen women who make up the U.S. Women’s National Indoor Volleyball team all carry with them a long list of accolades that displays their athletic prowess–these are just a few of those names you should know.
Kerri Walsh Jennings
Kerri Walsh Jennings is a household name, whether or not you have had the incredible opportunity to see one of her beach volleyball matches. She is a five-time Olympian and three-time gold medalist–the most decorated beach volleyball Olympian of all time. During her reign with Misty May-Treanor, the team won 21 consecutive Olympic matches, losing only one set over an 11-year period. She has said the next Olympic Games will be her last drive for gold. You won’t want to miss it.
Another noteworthy beach volleyball phenom, April Ross, has recently become Walsh Jennings’ partner in the sand. After a stellar performance at the 2012 London Games playing with Jennifer Kessy, the USC grad joined Jennings in 2016 where the two brought home a bronze medal. This seven-time USAV Female Beach Player of the Year is one to watch as the next Olympic Games approach.
Indoor Volleyball star Jordan Larson has won both a silver and bronze medal from the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games respectively, but she is on the hunt for gold. With two Olympics and three world championships under her belt, the 2015 and 2016 USA Volleyball Female Indoor Player of the Year is expected to lead the charge for Team USA in the upcoming Summer Olympics.
MVP of the 2014 Volleyball World Championships, Kim Hill, made her Olympic debut at the Rio Games in 2016. She started in all eight matches throughout the tournament, helping Team USA earn a Bronze medal. Named First Best Spiker at the 2019 NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship, Hill will be one to watch during the next Olympic Games.
Although Lauren Carlini has yet to step on an Olympic court, her accolades and major tournament appearances suggest that she will achieve greatness in years to come. As a three-time AVCA First-Team All-American at the University of Wisconsin, it was no surprise when she was named the 2016-17 recipient of the Sullivan Award Winner for best amateur athlete in any sport in the United States. Following a stellar Olympic qualifier performance, Carlini was named the 2019 Player of the Pool, and Team USA expects her to continue to dominate the court in the upcoming Olympics.