Tuesday, 23 Jul 2024

Eight Make National Team Debut in Continental Championship Loss

Eight talented players had the opportunity to showcase their skills as they made their debut for the U.S. Women’s National Team in a thrilling match against Puerto Rico at the NORCECA Continental Championship. Although the team faced a 3-2 defeat (21-25, 28-26, 25-19, 21-25, 15-9), their performance did not go unnoticed.

A Strong Effort Despite the Loss

Head coach Joe Trinsey commended the players for their hard-fought battle on the court. He acknowledged the tenacity of Puerto Rico as a formidable opponent and was pleased with the team’s effort level, even though there were moments when execution fell short.

Notable Performances by Debutants

Six of the eight debutants made their mark by securing starting positions. Kara Bajema, as an outside hitter, led the team with an impressive 17 points. Middle blocker Rachael Kramer contributed greatly with eight blocks and a total of 10 points. Jenna Gray, the setter, orchestrated the team’s offense, resulting in 46 successful attacks. Kendall White, the team’s libero, played a critical role in defense. Madeline Gates and Ali Frantti also showcased their skills as they started all five sets as middle blocker and outside hitter, respectively.

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New Talent Shining Through

Lindsay Stalzer and Ali Bastianelli made their debuts off the bench and displayed their talent and potential. As nerves settled, their aggression became evident, especially in the early stages of the match.

A Veteran Presence

Danielle Cuttino, the team’s opposite and captain, contributed 11 points, showcasing her experience as the sole starter with previous WNT (Women’s National Team) experience. Back in 2019, Cuttino participated in two tournaments and a few exhibition matches.

A Hard-Fought Battle

The United States secured an early lead by winning the first set, but Puerto Rico responded strongly, taking the next two sets. The USA managed to tie the match by clinching the fourth set but couldn’t maintain the momentum in the fifth. Puerto Rico finished on a 13-5 scoring run, ultimately securing victory.

What’s Next

The U.S. team will close group play against Canada on August 27 at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/3:30 p.m. Pacific. All three teams from Group A will advance to the knockout stage, which begins on August 29. Stay tuned to witness the continued growth and success of this talented group of athletes.


Q: How did the U.S. Women’s National Team fare in the match against Puerto Rico?
A: The U.S. team displayed great effort and fought hard but unfortunately lost the match 3-2. Despite the loss, their performance showed promise and determination.

Q: Who were the standout players in the match?
A: Kara Bajema stood out as the team’s leading scorer with 17 points, while Rachael Kramer showcased her defensive skills with eight blocks. Jenna Gray’s effective setting contributed to the team’s success, and Kendall White played a crucial role as the libero.

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Q: What is the next match for the U.S. Women’s National Team?
A: The U.S. team will face Canada in their next group play match on August 27 at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/3:30 p.m. Pacific.


In their first match of the NORCECA Continental Championship, the U.S. Women’s National Team introduced eight new players to the international stage. Despite a 3-2 loss to Puerto Rico, the team’s performance showed promise and determination. Kara Bajema led the team in scoring, while Rachael Kramer showcased her defensive prowess. The team will look to regroup and bounce back in their next match against Canada. Stay tuned to witness the growth of this talented group as they continue to represent their country with pride and passion. For more updates, visit the official Alpinetgheep website.