League One Volleyball (LOVB) on Thursday announced Atlanta and Houston as the first of its franchises for its pro women’s league set to launch in 2024.
LOVB said in a news release:
With LOVB’s Houston Skyline and A5’s robust club presence in these cities, LOVB will strategically tie its pro teams to these clubs, helping the league to build an ecosystem of fandom, starting on the ground floor as pro players become even more familiar and accessible to club players and the community at large. A5 boasts more than 123 teams and Houston Skyline has 79 teams across three locations in the greater Houston area. These LOVB clubs have developed a number of marquee players like Madisen Skinner from Houston Skyline and Marianna Singletary from A5, who were both part of Texas’s 2022 NCAA Volleyball championship team, as well as others who’ve gone on to play in college and beyond.
LOVB also announced that Olympian Haleigh Washington has joined the organization. Previously LOVB signed two of her gold-medal-winning teammates, Kelsey Cook and Justine Wong-Orantes.
“At LOVB, we are not just setting out to create another league, but to make major league volleyball in the US a reality,” Katlyn Gao, co-founder and CEO of LOVB, said in a news release. “We are being incredibly methodical and purposeful in how we build. Through our community up model, which starts with our clubs, we are actively creating a path from club to pro, as well as building an ecosystem of engaged fans from the ground floor.
“We believe volleyball deserves to be on center stage and are incredibly proud of the strides we are making in the sport.”
We wrote about LOVB in December 2021.
LOVB said its first season will include “six teams, in six different cities across the country. The inaugural season will begin with a pre-season in November 2024, and then will move onto the main season starting in January and concluding in April 2025.”
LOVB is the third organization to start pro women’s volleyball in the U.S. Athletes Unlimited has already held two of its seasons and the Pro Volleyball Federation also is launching a pro league in 2024. PVF has announced four franchise locations, Columbus, Ohio; Omaha; Grand Rapids, Michigan; and, interestingly, also Atlanta.