The U.S. Women's Junior National Volleyball Team defeated Mexico, 25-19, 25-16, 25-23, on Wednesday evening at the NORCECA Women's Junior (U-20) Continental Championships held in Tijuana, Mexico.
The Americans had the highest point scoring ratio (225-98) among all of the pool winners. The U.S. advances directly to the semifinals that start on Friday and will have a day off on Thursday.
"I really liked our effort," USA coach Rob Browning said. "Mexico is good team. Getting out of here with a win tonight in their home facility is very gratifying. I also was very pleased with the performance of our players that came off the bench. They played a big role in the win."
Croson was the highest scorer for Team USA with 12 points on 11 kills and one block. Kelly Reeves and incoming Stanford freshman Carly Wopat each scored 11 points. Reeves scored 10 kills and one ace while Carly Wopat had eight kills and three blocks.
Team USA had an advantage over Mexico with a 41-31 kill ratio. The U.S. also contributed two aces in comparison to Mexico's one serving ace. The teams tied in blocks at 7. However, Team USA also took the advantage on defense with a 31-24 digging ratio and 25 Mexico errors to its own 16.
The NORCECA Women's Junior Continental Championship is a qualifier into the 2011 FIVB Women's Junior World Championship. The top three teams at the NORCECA earn berths into next year's pinnacle event for the age group.
Senior national team
The U.S. Women's National Team has scheduled two intra-squad Red-Blue scrimmages in July as it prepares for the annual FIVB World Grand Prix.
The first exhibition is scheduled for Irvine Valley College on July 17 at 7 p.m. while the second exhibition is scheduled for St. Margaret's Episcopal School on July 24 at 7 p.m.
The U.S. will be on the road for nearly all of August as it plays in the FIVB World Grand Prix. The squad opens the event in Gdynia, Poland, with matches against Dominican Republic on Aug. 6, Germany on Aug. 7 and host Poland on Aug. 8 during the first weekend of preliminary round matches.