Volleyball Alums Christa Dietzen And Alisha Glass Punch Ticket To Olympics
A pair of graduates from #RussRoseU are headed to the Rio Olympics in a few weeks after being selected to compete for the United States on the Women’s Volleyball team. Alumni Christa Harmotto Dietzen and Alisha Glass will represent the blue and white (and red) as the U.S. attempts to one-up the silver medal it earned in London.
Dietzen and Glass will be accompanied by two other Nittany Lions, as Megan Hodge Easy and Nicole Fawcett will serve as alternates. All four women were on the 2007 and 2008 teams that won back-to-back NCAA championships while Glass and Easy notched a third trophy in 2009. Each woman played a role on the 2012 Olympic team either as roster-players or alternate.
“I think all of the players selected to the US women’s team had great collegiate careers,” said Penn State coach Russ Rose. “The fact that all four of the players were involved with multiple Penn State national championships is an indication that they had great talent at an early age and people in the Penn State family were able to enjoy and embrace it.”
Dietzen, a middle hitter who was a starter in 2012, will serve as the Olympic team captain as the U.S. heads into the opening round of pool play against Puerto Rico on August 6 and then a match against the Netherlands on August 8. If everything goes according to plan for the U.S., which is currently ranked No. 1 in the world, the team will play in the gold medal match on August 20.
The official roster is comprised of 12 women who are accompanied by eight alternates. Penn State has the most players on the team of any university, with Nebraska’s three being the only other school to boast more than one player.
Dietzen, Glass, Easy, and Fawcett join a growing list of Penn Staters who will be heading to Rio to represent the Blue and White. Soccer standouts Ali Krieger and Alyssa Naeher officially joined the U.S. women’s soccer squad yesterday. Additionally, former track athletes Joe Kovacs and Darrell Hill qualified for the games as well as former men’s volleyball players Aaron Russell, Max Holt, and Matt Anderson.
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Clifford will take the job left vacant by Trace McSorley, who went 31-9 as the Nittany Lions’ QB1 in three seasons at the helm of the team’s offense.
2019 seems to break a trend for Penn State football, which usually named just three captains per season (one on offense, defense, and special teams).
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