Posts by usantvolleyball

    The beauty of the German league is that it is a great training ground for American players that will never have a chance on the USNT but still love to play volleyball. Bartsch is a product of the German league. Several of Stuttgart's players may play their way up to the Italian league and have solid long term careers. There is no chance for American girls to ever play pro volleyball in the US as the NCAA is the only game in town for women's volleyball fans. In the US college loyalties outstrip pro loyalties.

    I'm wondering what impact Volero will have on recruiting some of the upcoming young talent. There will be money spent to return to competitive participation in CL for them.

    Just as a reminder in the recent Italian Super Cup Imoco was ahead of Novara 2-0 when Novara's #2 setter was sent in. She immediately began it set the middles and vary the sets. That totally confused the Imoco's blocking strategies and opened up the block for Egonu and Novara came back and won a five set thriller.

    Stats for that match http://www.legavolleyfemminile…ge_id=47322&idgara=743333

    Take a quick look at the MB's hitting efficiencies

    For the Novara vs Vakif semi..

    Egonu is equal in attack to Zhu.

    Bartsch is equal in attack to Sloetjes

    Piccinni only when she forgets she's 40 is equal to Krob

    Chirichella and Veljkovic are equal to Rasic and Caliskan

    Carlini is better then Cansu

    Gizem is better then Sansonna

    So a near dead heat in terms of talent. Novara is deeper in the bench so unfortunately for Vakif who was only able to beat Imoco last year in a five set thriller with a fabulous end play by Zhu because Imoco had both their starting MB's out with injury, the end result will be a golden set loss to Novara and an all Italian final in Berlin.

    Plus this is the start of the end of Vakif's current run of dominence as Zhu leaves and Guidetti begins to use Vakif as a farm team for the Turkish national team.

    I think I can safely say that in this biggest match Hill outplayed both Larson and Kim as she has done many times before in the Turkish league. The Americans lead Imoco to victory. Nice to see after last year when they went into the playoffs with both Robin and Folie injured.

    Jordan Poulter, just out of college, and in a half season in Italy has quickly shown that she will be must have setter in the next few years. Her big push now is the get the serious attention of Karch so she can have an opportunity to fight for the starting setter postion in Tokyo 20. The US has a plethora of talented setters. The question is "can Karch create a system that maximises the skill of just one of them to revive his teams potential for a medal in Tokyo". It's clear that Club general managers still value the best US players as key components for success regardless as to how Karch uses them. Kelsey Robinson a case in point.

    Two solid matches in a row for Imoco. It's a confidence building ramp up for their match with ECZ who looked out of sync in their recent ugly loss to Vakif. Everyone for Imoco was solid today and their serve was on point. Sylla/Hill versus Larson/KYK10, it should be a great competition. Bosko versus Fabris/Lowe but Imoco seems to have the advantage at middles and certainly at setter.

    Can it be that Lowe is now replacing Fabris in the starting six? CL quarters are coming soon and it seems that now is the time to be creating that extra harmony that on court time together develops. I know Lowe has had some big moments but I've yet to see her take over the match like Fabris can when she is totally in her zone. CL is about limiting mistakes and being on top of your game. After watching ECZ get routed by Vakif in their last match I feel that Imoco has a solid opportunity to take them out. Imoco clicked like a well tuned engine against Lodz, or maybe I should say a fine running Tesla so that has to be a positive sign of their re-imergence. This match will tell if that is truly so.

    Karsta Lowe to join Imoco after the first of the year. Is there any rule as to how many players you can have from one country? Or is it just the foreigner on the floor rule? There are several top NCAA OH's that will be available if they are willing to forgo their final semester of college. Foecke being the first choice. Imoco making another big push to claim CL gold and repeat as Italian champs and get that free pass to CWC.

    I'm not sure how Aachen can expect success based upon the woeful nature of their reception. I know that Taylor Agost did receive part of the time last year at Oregon and was adequate. A receiving opposite as a possibility? They need to do something as they can't succeed if they can't have more in-system attacking.