BOULDER - University of Colorado assistant volleyball coach Tom Hogan and freshman defensive specialist Hannah Walker recently returned to CU after participating in the USA Volleyball High Performance Championship July 26-30 in Wisconsin Dells, Wis.
"It's always a great honor to have your university represented at a USAV event of this caliber," CU coach Liz Kritza said. "But to have both a player and a coach participate is an excellent sign for this program. It shows that CU can provide a truly unique experience with our commitment to pursuing excellence in our volleyball training."
Hogan, who has a long-standing relationship with USA Volleyball as he was an assistant for the women's national team, served as an assistant coach for the USA Girls' Youth A2 team. The team recorded a 5-2 record to place fourth and won 18 sets over the course of the tournament.
Walker, a Colorado Springs, Colo. native, was a member of the USA Women's Junior A2 team that also finished with a 5-2 record. The team finished fourth in the bracket with a set win-loss record of 17-10.
"This championship was great for Hannah to adjust to playing at a higher level of competition," Kritza said. "She joined us in January after graduating from high school early, and those extra months of training, along with this experience are a clear benefit for her development as a young player."
CU has also been hosting a number of successful volleyball camps and had the help of a pair of Olympians for the second consecutive year. Tayyiba Haneef-Park and Danielle Scott-Arruda, a four-time Olympian, were on hand to help local volleyball players this summer. Both were members of the team that won the silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, along with Hogan who was an assistant coach. Last year Ogonna Nnamani and Robyn Ah Mow-Santos assisted at the CU camp.
"When we talked about adding unique opportunities to build the volleyball program here at CU, we decided to bring as many high level volleyball players and coaches to help in the process," Kritza said. "Tom had the idea and took the reins in bringing these athletes of the highest caliber to our campus. The young players who attend our camps have an amazing opportunity to interact with them and they have been a huge hit. It is an experience they will remember forever.
"These initiatives, in conjunction with the state-of-the-art practice facility that is being built, are clear signs of the excitement of the rebuilding that is taking place in the volleyball program here at Colorado."
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