Keegan Cook and the U 19 Pan Am Cup Team

Ignatius L Hoops

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Sep 9, 2015
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The roster is selected

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 5, 2023) – The USA Volleyball National Team Development Program (NTDP) has selected 12 athletes to compete at the 2023 Girls U19 NORCECA Pan American Cup on May 9-15 in Juana Diaz, Puerto Rico.

The 12 athletes were chosen from a roster of 20 U19 National Team athletes who trained April 30-May 6 at the Anaheim National Team Training Center.

“I’m really pleased with the growth of our group of talented athletes over the week,” head coach Keegan Cook said. “It’s a lot of ‘new’ coming their way, and by the end of the week I’m just amazed at the level of play.”

Two players on the roster return from the 2022 team that won the Girls U19 Pan American Cup in Tulsa, Okla., and qualified for the 2023 FIVB U19 Girls World Championship: outside hitter Julia Blyashov and setter Izzy Starck. Blyashov also played on the 2021 Girls U18 Team that won bronze at the 2021 FIVB U18 World Championship. In late April she was named MVP of the 18 Open division at the USA Volleyball Girls 18s Junior National Championship, where her club team captured the title.

In addition to Blyashov and Starck, players headed to Puerto Rico are outside hitters Blaire Bayless, Kaci Demaria, Teraya Sigler and Abby Vander Wal, and middle blockers Lizzy Andrew, Jaela Auguste and Calissa Minatee. Olivia Babcock plays at opposite and Logan Parks plays setter/opposite. Ava Falduto is the libero.

Alternates for the team are outside hitters Suli Davis, Brooklyn DeLeye and Kelly Kinney, middles Taylor Harvey and Alec Rothe, setters Reese Messer and Taylor Yu, and libero Ryan McAleer.

Other teams competing at the Pan Am Cup are Canada, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“You never really know what you’re going to get when you go overseas, which is part of the fun, in terms of the challenges and the level of play” Cook said. “I expect things to be pretty competitive after experiencing most of these teams last year in Tulsa. I think they’ll be one year better, and it will be a nice challenge for USA.”
The 2023 Girls U19 Pan American Cup was a late addition to the NORCECA calendar and USA Volleyball looks forward to participating in both the Pan Am Cup and the 2023 FIVB Girls U19 World Championship.

The roster for the 2023 FIVB Girls U19 World Championship (Aug. 1-11 in Croatia and Hungary) will be determined later this year.

Check back for live stream information.

Name (Position, Height, Birth Year, Hometown, School, Region)
Lizzy Andrew
(MB, 6-5, 2005, Ridgefield, Wash., Ridgefield HS, Columbia Empire)
Jaela Auguste (MB, 6-2, 2006, Spring, Texas, Grand Oaks HS, Lonestar)
Olivia Babcock (OPP, 6-4, 2005, Los Angeles, Calif., Sierra Canyon HS, Southern California)
Blaire Bayless (OH, 6-2, 2005, Plano, Texas, Plano West Senior HS, North Texas)
Julia Blyashov (OH, 6-3, 2005, San Diego, Calif., Cathedral Catholic HS, Southern California)
Kaci Demaria (OH, 6-4, 2007, San Pedro, Calif., Palos Verdes HS, Southern California)
Ava Falduto (L, 5-7, 2006, Elmhurst, Ill., IC Catholic Prep, Great Lakes)
Calissa Minatee (MB, 6-0, 2005, Kansas City, Mo., University of Minnesota, Heart of America)
Logan Parks (OPP/S, 5-11, 2006, Overland Park, Kan., Blue Valley North HS, Heart of America)
Teraya Sigler (OH, 6-2, 2006, Horizon HS, Scottsdale, Ariz., Arizona)
Izzy Starck (S, 6-1, 2006, Colorado Springs, Colo., Rampart HS, Rocky Mountain)
Abby Vander Wal (OH, 6-3, 2006, Elmhurst, Ill., Timothy Christian HS, Great Lakes)

Head Coach: Keegan Cook
Assistant Coach: Krista Hendrickson
Assistant Coach: Cursty Le Roux
Performance Analyst: Virginia Pham
Athletic Trainer: Cherryl Bueno
Team Lead: Courtney Smith

Suli Davis (OH, 6-2, 2007, Euless, Texas, Colleyville Heritage HS, North Texas)
Brooklyn DeLeye (OH, 6-2, 2005, Auburn, Kan., Washburn Rural HS, Heart of America)
Taylor Harvey (MB, 6-3, 2006, Bountiful, Utah, Bountiful HS, Intermountain)
Kelly Kinney (OH, 6-2, 2007, West Palm Beach, Fla., The King’s Academy, Florida)
Ryan McAleer (L, 5-5, 2005, Leawood, Kan., Blue Valley HS, Heart of America)
Reese Messer (S, 5-11, 2006, Olathe, Kan., Saint James Academy, Heart of America)
Alec Rothe (MB, 6-3, 2006, Dublin, Ohio, Dublin Scioto HS, Ohio Valley)
Taylor Yu (S, 6-0, 2006, Temple City, Calif., Temple City HS, Southern California)

U.S. Schedule​

Tuesday, May 9 (all times PT)
11 a.m.: USA vs. U.S. Virgin Islands

Wednesday, May 10
11 a.m.: USA vs. Costa Rica

Thursday, May 11
1 p.m.: USA vs. Mexico

Wonder why more early enrollee college players weren't selected? I suppose you can decline to participate. Cook probably asked Minatee to accept, but why not also take Schnichels?

Weird system

The University of Minnesota will be well represented with USA Volleyball this month at the Pan American Cup.

On Tuesday, Gophers sophomore McKenna Wucherer was named to the Under-21 roster that will compete in Mexico — she is one of 18 players on the team for the U.S., which will train for a week before 12 players make the final roster. The tournament will be held May 23-28.

The Under-19 team got competition started Tuesday in Puerto Rico with new Gophers coach Keegan Cook leading that squad. The 12-player roster includes Calissa Minatee, a freshman middle blocker for the U. That tournament runs through May 15

Again, why not Schnichels?

If she sits behind Grote and Crowl this season, could be transfer-city.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 9, 2023) – The U.S. Girls U19 National Team began pool play with a resounding victory over U.S. Virgin Islands 3-0 (25-6, 25-18, 25-12) at the NORCECA Pan American Cup on Tuesday in Puerto Rico.


The U.S. maintained steady control on the scoreboard throughout each set, never trailing in the match. U.S. Head Coach Keegan Cook took note of areas where he thought the team could improve, but was pleased with the overall result.

“Really strong opening set,” Cook said. “I would have liked to have seen us carry that through a little bit more. I am looking forward to seeing us improve in serve receive and on the service line, but nice to see a bunch of talented young athletes wear USA for the first time and I liked what I saw.”

Opposite Olivia Babcock scored eight points in the victory as one of the top scorers in the match. Two of her eight points came on service aces. Babcock set aside any pregame jitters once it was time to deliver.

“It was my first time wearing the USA jersey so I was nervous,” Babcock said. “It was a great opportunity to represent my country and it ended up being really fun and I think we played really well as a team. I think this is going to be a great tournament for us.”

Middle blocker Jaela Auguste and opposite/setter Logan Parks each also contributed seven points to the winning effort. Auguste earned three of those points on blocks, while Parks brought in five of her seven points on kills.

Libero Ava Falduto led the team with eight digs and outside hitter Teraya Sigler led the team with three service aces.

Outside hitter Julia Blyashov and setter Izzy Starck joined Auguste for the tie in team high blocks at two.

Overall, the U.S. had just under a 70 percent success rate on attack throughout the three sets and limited U.S. Virgin Islands to just a 15 percent success rate.

The U.S. Girls U19 Team will be back in action on Wednesday against Costa Rica with match time set for 11 a.m. PT.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 9, 2023) – The U.S. Girls U19 National Team continued its hot start with a second straight victory, this time over Costa Rica 3-0 (25-13, 25-13, 25-12) at the NORCECA Pan American Cup on Wednesday in Puerto Rico.


The U.S. jumped out to take command early thanks in part to high level serving. The team held a 15-2 advantage over Costa Rica, a mark that was among a few improvements noticed by head coach Keegan Cook.

“Certainly pleased with our service pressure and our improvement blocking and transitioning,” Cook said. “I thought communication improved tremendously across the board even as we mixed lineups. I thought the athletes did a nice job of binding to the systems of play that we have agreed on.”

Libero Ava Falduto had 14 serve receptions and one dig on the match. Falduto was proud of the progress she has already seen from her squad in just two matches.

“I think we are getting better each time we step on the court together,” Falduto said. “It’s been really fun competing with these girls and I think this team has a ton of potential we haven’t even reached yet. Everyone has been doing a great job filling their roles.”

Stout defense was also a key factor in the win. The U.S. held a 7-4 advantage for the match in blocks over Costa Rica, with seven different athletes accounting for each block.

Outside hitter Julia Blyashov led the team in scoring with seven points. Outside hitter Kaci Demaria and middle blocker Calissa Minatee followed closely with six points each. The U.S. held an impressive 30-11 advantage in attacks throughout the match.

Setters Izzy Starck and Logan Parks each ended the match averaging 2.33 sets

The U.S. Girls U19 Team will conclude pool play with a match against Mexico on Thursday. Match time is set for 1 p.m. PT. A win would earn the U.S. an automatic place in the semifinal match on Saturday

Minatee with 5 blocks and 2 aces

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 11, 2023) – The U.S. Girls U19 National Team is now 3-0 after completing the pool phase of the 2023 NORCECA Pan American Cup. The U.S defeated Mexico 3-0 (25-14, 25-11, 25-17) on Thursday in Puerto Rico. The win gives the team an automatic place in the semifinal on Saturday night.


The U.S. got out to an early lead for the third straight match and kept up defensive pressure with a 15-2 blocking advantage over Mexico. Middle blocker Calissa Minatee led the team in blocks with five. Middle blocker Elizabeth Andrew also contributed three blocks in the victory.

Libero Ava Falduto earned a team-high 13 digs while averaging 4.33 per set.

Minatee was the runner-up in team scoring, adding six of her nine total points in the second set. Outside hitter Julia Blyashov led the way with 12 total points on nine kills and two aces. Blyashov was complimentary of the team chemistry at this stage of the tournament.

“We were super supportive of each other and we were just getting in a better groove of the game,” Blyashov said. “We are super excited to bring this energy into the semifinals.”

The U.S. held the scoring margin at 32-19 on kills for the match. Opposite Olivia Babcock and outside hitter Teraya Sigler each tallied four kills on the stat sheet. Babcock added four of her five total points in the first set. Sigler saved her four points for the third and final set, helping to strand a late comeback bid by Mexico that ended with a 25-17 final score.

Middle blocker Jaela Auguste tied Blyashov and Minatee with two service aces for the match. The team ended the day with nine aces total, averaging three per set.

As a team, the U.S. had a 29.4 percent hitting efficiency and a 41.03 kill percentage throughout the three sets with Mexico.

The U.S. Girls U19 Team will face the winner of Dominican Republic vs. Canada in the semifinal. Match time is currently set for 5 p.m. PT on Saturday, May 13

USA Team Live right now which is FREE on IQ TV susbscription on YouTube.

Up 16-8 vs. Costa Rica.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 13, 2023) – The U.S. Girls U19 National Team is moving on to the championship match after defeating Costa Rica in the semifinals of the 2023 NORCECA Pan American Cup. The U.S was victorious by a final score of 3-0 (25-14, 25-20, 25-6) on Saturday in Puerto Rico. The team has yet to lose a set throughout its Pan Am Cup journey.


This was the team’s second victory over Costa Rica during this competition. USA previously defeated CRC 3-0 (25-13, 25-13, 25-12) in the pool stage on May 10.

In the semifinal, the U.S. once again got out to an early lead to set the tone in the first set. Outside hitter Blaire Bayless put up all nine of her total points with five kills and four aces. Her final tally was more than double the opponent’s leading scorer for the match. Setter Izzy Starck contributed five of her six total points in the first set and had four aces in the match.

The second set was a tougher test. Costa Rica rallied to draw within one point with the score at 13-12. They held the margin within four points until the U.S. captured the final score at 25-20. Outside hitter Abby Vander Wal stepped in to take charge of scoring with nine total points of her own in the second set. Vander Wal would finish as the leading scorer for the U.S. with 12 points on 9 kills and three aces.

“Our energy definitely picked up from the second to the third set,” Vander Wal said. “I am super excited to take that energy into the championship game tomorrow.”

The U.S. finished strong in the third set, led this time by outside hitter Kaci Demaria. She scored six points on three kills and three blocks. Middle blocker Jaela Auguste tied Bayless for second on the team in kills for the match with five total. She put up four of her six total points in the third set.

Logan Parks was the team’s third highest scorer and earned a team-high five aces in the victory. Four of her seven points came in the third set. Libero Ava Falduto played all three sets and had 11 digs while averaging 3.67 per set.

As a team, the U.S. had a 41.2 percent hitting efficiency and a 57.14 kill percentage throughout the three sets with Costa Rica. Assistant coach Cursty Le Roux credited the team’s resolve and cohesion while facing a confident opponent.

“I think Costa Rica was an amazing team,” Le Roux said. “After beating Dominican Republic, they really had a lot of confidence, so our point was just to serve really aggressively, which we did, and play with a lot of energy and positivity. It was great to see a lot of different lineups and it just showed exactly who we are as a team.”

The U.S. Girls U19 National Team will look to capture its second consecutive Pan Am Cup title on Sunday. They will face the semifinal winner of Puerto Rico vs. Mexico. Match time is currently set for 4 p.m. PT.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 14, 2023) – The U.S. Girls U19 National Team (5-0) won its second consecutive Pan American Cup with a 3-0 (25-8, 25-18, 25-18) win over Mexico Sunday evening in Puerto Rico.

The U.S. defeated Mexico for the second time this week, and they did not lose a set in the tournament. Outside hitter Blaire Bayless was named MVP. Lizzy Andrew earned the Best Blocker award, and Ava Falduto was named Best Receiver.

“This medal started back last week in Anaheim when all 20 of the girls on the national team were training and preparing for the Pan Am Cup,” Bayless said. “I’m so beyond honored to have worn this jersey and represent my country in this tournament. I could not be more excited to be bringing home the gold.”
All 12 players saw action in the final match. Andrew led all scorers with 13 points on five kills, three blocks and five aces. Bayless had 10 points on seven kills, two aces and a block. Olivia Babcock tallied eight points on eight kills. Julia Blyashov picked up seven points (four kills, two blocks, one ace).

Abby Vander Wal and Jaela Auguste each scored five points. Vander Wal had four kills and a block; Auguste had five kills. Calissa Minatee scored four points on two kills and two aces. Teraya Sigler had three kills, Kacie Demaria had two kills, and setter Izzy Starck had an ace.

Falduto had 10 digs and 13 serve receptions, with eight rated excellent.

Match Statistics (PDF)

After the match, U.S. head coach Keegan Cook gave a shoutout to Puerto Rico and the solid play of the U.S. and Mexican teams.

“First, congratulations to Mexico on an outstanding tournament, particularly in the playoff rounds, and a huge thank you to the Puerto Rico volleyball community and NORCECA for running a tremendous event,” U.S. head coach Keegan Cook said. “I’m really impressed with how our group started tonight’s match. I thought they played their best volleyball in the most important moment. It was really impressive to have so many players contributing at so many different positions without missing a beat. [It’s a] great start to their young careers, and I look forward to their development looking forward. Go USA!”

Blyashov and Starck both picked up their second Pan Am Cup gold medals in less than a year.

“We brought it today; Mexico is a wonderful team, but we gave it our all,” Blyashov said. “Each game we kept getting better and feeling more together. For me, it’s my second gold medal in a row and it’s an honor to repeat this.”

Good for them, don't think there was much competition there? All the same, congrats

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