American women open volleyball tourney with a win


Stanford sophomore Carly Wopat had six kills and two blocks as the United States women's junior national volleyball team opened the FIVB Junior World Championships with a 25-21, 25-18, 25-16 victory over Belgium Friday at the Gran Chimu Gymnasium in Trujillo, Peru.

The Americans continue pool play with a match against Poland on Saturday and a match with Korea on Sunday.

Haley Eckerman led the U.S. with 15 points on 13 kills, a block and an ace. Kelly Reeves added eight kills and three blocks.

"We followed the game plan," Reeves said. "We are very happy with the result, Belgium is a great team and we were surprised to see that our team played better as the match went along."

Captain Lise Van Hecke scored 18 points for Belgium.

Team USA recorded 43 kills to Belgium's 29. The U.S. out-blocked Belgium by a 13-5 margin.

"We practiced about 10 days before traveling here to Peru," U.S. coach Rob Browning said. "We feel like we are at a disadvantage because of that."

Men's volleyball

The U.S. national team downed Mexico, 25-19, 25-17, 25-18, Friday at the London Volleyball International Invitational at Earls Court, the site of next year's Olympic volleyball competition.

The Americans (2-1) play host Great Britain on Saturday and finish with Brazil on Sunday.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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