USA women 6-0 in VNL after sweeping Serbia, Netherlands, Thailand

Micha Hancock and Megan Courtney on defense against Thailand/FIVB photo

The USA women, who have lost just one set in six matches, improved to 6-0 in the Volleyball Nations League tournament in Rimini, Italy, with three sweeps in its second round of three matches.

The Americans beat, in order, Serbia (25-20, 25-16, 25-12) on Tuesday, the Netherlands (25-22, 25-15, 25-18) on Wednesday, and Thailand (25-17, 25-14, 25-16) on Thursday.

They now get another three days off before taking on Germany on Sunday, Korea on Monday, and Italy on Tuesday.

The USA, which has won the last two VNL tournaments and is ranked No. 1 in the world, had a different look this week from when it opened play with victories over the Dominican Republic, Canada, and Brazil, the only team to take a set off the Americans.

Coach Karch Kiraly, with 18 players on his roster looking to trim it to 12 for the Olympics, continued to give everyone a chance to get in full matches. Accordingly, the USA has played all six matches without using a substitution.

Chiaka Ogbogu hits against Serbia/FIVB photo

Against Serbia, opposite Jordan Thompson continued to sparkle, this time with 15 kills while hitting .500. But the lineup included Michelle Bartsch-Hackley and Kim Hill at outside for the first time.

Bartsch-Hackley had nine kills, a block, and an ace. Hill had five kills.

Middle Haleigh Washington had six kills, four blocks, and an ace. The other middle was Chiaka Ogbogu, who had six kills, two blocks, and an ace. Setter Jordyn Poulter had two kills and a block and Megan Courtney, in at libero, had 22 digs.

Click here for USA-Serbia highlights.

Tori Dixon cuts the ball past the Netherlands block/FIVB photo

Against the Netherlands, Kelsey Robinson got the start at outside hitter and led with 10 kills, 15 digs, a block, and two aces. Annie Drews was back in the lineup at opposite and and had nine kills and two blocks. Jordan Larson, also back in the lineup, had eight kills and two aces as her team held a 7-0 advantage in aces.

Micha Hancock set for the first time and had two aces. She had 34 assists, 11 digs, and three kills. Justine Wong-Orantes had 14 digs. The middles were Foluke Akinradewo Gunderson and Tori Dixon.

Click here for USA-Netherlands highlights.

And then Thursday against Thailand, Bartsch-Hackley led with 11 kills as she hit .500 and had four aces and three blocks. The team hit .446.

Thompson had 14 kills and hit .480. Hill had nine kills and two blocks, Washington had six kills, a block, and an ace, and Hannah Tapp had six kills and an ace. Hancock set and had two blocks, a kill, a dig, and an ace as the USA hit .446. Courtney had five digs.

Click here for USA-Thailand highlights.


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