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Comments Off on Beach vs. Indoor

As summer materializes and formal indoor volleyball training dies down many indoor volleyball players find themselves at a loss for how to continue training. Common misconception makes some of these individuals believe that outdoor beach volleyball would not be a good substitute because it is not “specialized” like the indoor game. IVA would like to demystify beach volleyball for these individuals and coaches since for many, especially in Utah, they see beach as a foreign sport that should not be practiced, when in fact it is one of the best and cheapest trainings a volleyball player could have in the summertime.

To begin, we will list some of the common inaccurate claims about beach volleyball and dispel the false accusations surrounding:

Beach is not a specialized game. How will I be able to become a better hitter, digger, setter, etc.? Beach will cause burn-out since it is an add-on to club and school volleyball. The skills on the beach are not the same as in indoor. There is no coaching, so how could I get better?

Responses to the claims:

Beach will help you become better at all the skills listed above and more. This is so because unlike indoor where you share responsibility with six other individuals, two-player-beach forces you to take action on most plays. Players will be responsible for a full volleyball skill set as all are necessary at one point or another in a rally; players do not have the option to be one-dimensional. Thus beach volleyball has a positive effect on a player because not only does the individual get to improve upon the skills they are already good at, but also get to work on those they are not. While indoor promotes specialization, we all know that the person with the greatest skill set will be the most attractive to coaches. When people complain of getting burnt out from volleyball the blame generally falls on the coaches. Players get tired of the seemingly monotonous drills, begging to just play or scrimmage. Beach is perfect for the frustrated volleyball player since almost all skill development comes in the form of game play. By playing more instantly gratifying and competitive games, the worn down player can find why they loved volleyball again. While there are slight differences in the skills indoor and outdoor, in general the skills are the same. In beach, as discussed earlier, all skills must be mastered and perfected since you and your partner are responsible for the whole court. In fact the beach players that simplify their skills the most end up being the best. What coach wouldn’t want their player to have relaxed, informed, and fluid movements to the ball. Most beach players will tell you that they learn more without a coach in the outdoor game than with a coach in the indoor game. This is so because every movement counts in beach, so the player must be constantly tweaking skills to conserve energy, take stress off their partner, and win more points. Not having a coach, forces the player to make adjustments on their own which not only empowers the player, but gives them more confidence in their ability to adjust during play.

We hope that with this information we have been able to convince you of the merits of beach volleyball. Sign up for our beach camp July 9-11 and find out for yourself how amazing beach volleyball can be.




Comments Off on Women’s AA Dominated by Intermountain Teams at US Open

At the 2012 USA Volleyball Open National Championships, the Intermountain Region dominated in the women’s AA category. Team Red Rocks won gold in the division. A big congrats go out to Lori Baird, Karolina Bartkowiak, Tiffany Godfrey, Kate Holdeman, Lacee Koelliker, Jenna Neves, Chelsey Schofield and Emillie Toone for their performance.

Red Rocks prevailed over Intermountain in the championship game, which not surprisingly, was also comprised of Intermountain players.  More congrats go out to Charlotte Odale, Sheila Sorensen, Whitney Bartschi, Mandi Nuttall, Mckenzie Odale, Morgan Odale, Analaine Pelaez, Ashlan Rogers, Karly Jane Sipherd and Shay Sorenson for their second place finish.

Thanks to all the Intermountain athletes that represented the region well at the Open. If you have any volleyball stories or pictures you’d like to share log-on to our facebook page at and let us know!



Comments Off on Intermountain Coaches Win Gold

Congratulations to some of our wonderful Intermountain coaches who took home gold at the USA Volleyball Open National Championships over the weekend.

The UC 40’s team comprised of Warren Van Schalkwyk (Utah Juniors), Mike Daniel (Utah Aces/Club Utah), Jim Loveland (Utah Aces), Mike Clark (UP2), Steve Vail (Club Utah) and Bob Ward (Dig it!) won the championship in the Men’s 40 & over division by beating Rumbo A Los 100 from Venezuela in the championship match on Saturday. UC 40’s lost to Rumbo A Los 100 in pool play, but beat the challengers 2-0 twice in bracket play to take home the gold.

Thanks to everyone who came out to support the Open over the weeklong event and make it another great success in the Intermountain Region!

Don’t forget to sign up for beach and summer camps which are available at



Comments Off on Unity Remains Undefeated in Day Two of Premier Volleyball League Championships

Team will finish pool play against also undefeated Hoosier Exterminators tomorrow

Salt Lake City (May 27 2012)- Utah Unity continued their strong play in day two of the Premier Volleyball League, a new professional league that is being played as a part of the 2012 USA Volleyball Open National Volleyball Championships in Salt Lake City. Unity knocked off Western Empire in four games (25-21, 22-25, 25-12, 25-19) and Arizona Sizzle in three-game sweep (25-23, 25-20, 25-13).

Crimson Club Hall of Famer Brenda Whicker’s serving skills were vital in the win against Western Empire as she contributed four aces. Former BYU Cougar Kayla Walker continued to pace the team collecting a team-high 12 kills while hitting .670 from the Right Side position. Utah continued to be efficient in their hitting .313 as a team compared to just .174 for Western Empire. Alyssa D’Errico had 15 kills and 14 digs in the losing effort for Western Empire.

Nebraska imports Tara Mueller and Brooke Delano did most of the damage in the second match of the day against Arizona. Delano, a Middle Blocker, had 10 kills while Outside Hitter Mueller led the team with 11 kills.

“Right now we are playing with passion, love for each other and love for the game,” said team captain Sydney Anderson. ”We are having a lot of fun and playing volleyball like we are 12-years old again.”

With the two victories Unity moved to 4-0 in pool play and is assured a spot in the gold bracket tomorrow afternoon. Utah will play the top ranked and also undefeated Hoosier Exterminators at 11:30 tomorrow to finish pool play. The winner of that game will enter tournament play as the pool winner, and the top overall seed. Tournament play begins with the quarter-finals at 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. Semi-finals will be at 10 a.m. on Tuesday morning with the bronze medal game coming at 2:30 and the gold medal game at 4:30 Tuesday afternoon.





Comments Off on Unity Shines in First Ever Premier Volleyball League Game

Unity Shines in First Ever Premier Volleyball League Game

Inaugural Event for New USA Volleyball Sanctioned Professional League

Salt Lake City (May 25 2012)- The hometown Utah Unity showed well in the Asics Preview, the inaugural event for the new  Premier Volleyball League. In the main event of the exhibition Unity defeated Team Florida WAVE 20-25, 25-22 and 15-13.

The PVL is a new professional women’s volleyball league sanctioned by USA Volleyball. Teams will vie for the first ever PVL Championship as a part of the USA Volleyball Open National Championships taking place in Salt Lake City this week.

A crowd of over 500 volleyball fans took to the Dolores Dore Eccles Health, Wellness and Athletic Center on the campus of Westminster College to see the six-team exhibition that included an autograph signing and free kids clinic before the matches.

Nearly 40 boys and girls took part in the free volleyball clinic before the match. Unity players gave hands on training to kids of all skill levels and ages, ranging from six to 17 years old. Following the clinic the team signed autographs and posed for pictures.

Besides Utah and Florida, four other PVL teams participated in the exhibition. Puget Sound, Arizona Sizzle, Team North Texas and Dream Team of Northern California also scrimmaged prior to the Unity match. The six teams that took part in tonight’s exhibition will be joined by Team Iowa Ice, Hoosier Exterminators, Team Evergreen, Team Great Lakes, Team New England and Western Empire to make up the 12 team league. Teams will battle in the inaugural league event for the title of PVL Champion and a prize of $20,000 put up by USA Volleyball.

Games will be played at the Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace beginning at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning with the last match starting at 5:30. Teams will play five games in pool play over the weekend before taking to bracket play on Monday afternoon. The Championship match will be played at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday. All matches are free to attend.

Utah Unity will play at 1:30 and 5:30 on Saturday and Sunday and then at 11:30 on Monday morning on the center courts at the Salt Palace.

About Intermountain Volleyball

The Intermountain Volleyball Association is a non-profit member organization affiliated with USA Volleyball, the national governing body for the sport. USA Volleyball and IVA endeavor to assure universal access to opportunities at all levels of the game of volleyball.

About Utah Unity

Utah Unity is a professional women’s volleyball team representing the Intermountain Region of USA Volleyball. Unity plays in the Premier Volleyball League. More information on Unity, including rosters, bios and schedules is available at

About USA Premier Volleyball League:

The USA PVL is a grass roots professional volleyball league beginning in 2012 and it will be made up of teams from among of the forty (40) regional volleyball associations across the United States.

The USA PVL will be sanctioned by USA Volleyball and will offer tournament play and a League Championship event each year. Additional information on the USA Premier Volleyball League can be found at:




Comments Off on Utah Unity to Host First Premier Volleyball League Exhibition

Unity will face Florida Wave at Westminster College

Salt Lake City (May 17, 2012)- In preparation for the first ever Premier Volleyball League Tournament, the Utah Unity will host the “Asics Preview” at Westminster College. The six-team exhibition will be held at the Dolores Doré Eccles Health, Wellness, and Athletic Center (1840 South 1300 East, Salt Lake City) on the Westminster campus starting at 4:00 P.M. on Friday, May 25th. The event is free to attend and donations will be taken at the door for fans wanting to support Utah Unity.

The hometown Unity will match up against Team Florida Wave in the Asics Preview’s main event at 6 p.m. Florida and Utah are two of the top-seeded teams in the tournament and are expected to challenge for the inaugural title. The other exhibitions will start at 4:30 p.m. and be played side-by-side. Game one will matchup Team North Texas versus the Dream Team from Northern California.  The other exhibition will see Arizona Sizzle square off against Puget Sound. All exhibition matches will be played best two out of three games to 15 points.

Prior to the exhibition matches there will be a free 30 minute volleyball clinic featuring the Unity, beginning at 4 p.m.

The Premier Volleyball League Tournament will begin the following day at the Salt Palace Convention Center as a part of the USA Volleyball Open Championships. Teams will play two matches a day in pool play on Saturday and Sunday before finishing pool play and moving into bracket play on Monday. The Championship match will take place on Tuesday afternoon at 4:30 P.M.

More information on Utah Unity and Premier Volleyball League is available at and Fans can purchase VIP packages that include everything from practice visits to t-shirts and autographed posters at

All competition at the USA Volleyball Open Championships is free for fans to attend. Over 440 teams and 6,000 plus athletes will participate and result in over 14,000 people traveling to Salt Lake City and bring in an estimated $14-$16 million economic impact on the city. The Open championships are hosted by the Intermountain Region of USA volleyball, the Utah Sports commission and Visit Salt Lake.



Comments Off on Six Intermountain Volleyball Teams Win Bids to USA Junior National Championships

Six Intermountain Volleyball Teams Win Bids to USA Junior National Championships

Champions move on to compete against the Nation’s Best in Columbus, Ohio

Salt Lake City (May 5,2012)- Six Intermountain volleyball clubs completed their season by winning their age group and punching their tickets to the USA Junior National Championships at the Intermountain Bid Qualifier. Over 110 teams and more than 1,500 youth volleyball players at 30 different courts in six different locations competed at the Intermountain Volleyball’s Bid Qualifier event May 4thand 5th.

The six bids were spread across six age divisions ranging from 13-18 year olds. High Country won two bids taking home gold in the 18’s division coached by Kim Norman and the 16’s division coached by Owen Monroy.

Provo’s Club Utah Black were also duel winners. Club Utah Black 17-1 coached by Mike Daniel took home the 17’s division and Club Utah 14 Black coached by Allyce Jones were champions in the 14’s division.

The Draper based Utah Juniors were also winners in two age divisions as their Red team went on to win in both the 15’s coached by Kiesha Fisher and 13’s division coached by Jaime Bartholomew. Utah Juniors bid in the 13’s division was reallocated to Idaho Stars 13-1.

Results for all age divisions and brackets can be found on Advanced Event Systems. Pictures of each winner are being posted at

Champions in each age division have been allocated bids to compete in the 33rd annual USA Volleyball Junior National Championships (formerly the USA Junior Olympic Girls National Championship). This year’s National Championships will be held in Columbus, Ohio June 28-July 7 and will feature hundreds of the best teams from around the country vying for the title of National Champion.

The six new champions will join Pocatello Elite 18’s and Club Utah 18 Black who already earned bids to Columbus. Both teams qualified by virtue of their excellent finishes at Colorado Crossroads, a Junior National Qualifier Tournament in Denver, Colorado.

About Intermountain Volleyball

The Intermountain Volleyball Association is a non-profit member organization affiliated with USA Volleyball, the national governing body for the sport. USA Volleyball and IVA endeavor to assure universal access to opportunities at all levels of the game of volleyball.




Comments Off on Pocatello Elite at Colorado Crossroads


Last month the Intermountain Region was well represented at Colorado Crossroads Junior National Qualifier. Both Pocatello Elite and Club Utah won a bid in the Junior National Championships by virtue of their fantastic efforts.

Pocatello Elite was nice enough to send a court report recap of the tournament. Congrats again to both squads, and good luck at Nationals!

18 National

Pocatello Elite, which tied for third in 18 Club at the Las Vegas Classic two weeks before, ran the table in 18 National, winning 10 straight matches to claim the bid to Nationals. The Idaho squad swept through its first-day pool, including a win over MVA National in which OH Jenna Ellis and Katie Elgan slowed the Montana squad’s southpaw right side. Pocatello then overcame tough challenges from physical Delta Valley and Utah Juniors to sweep through its Saturday pool. Ann Clappier, Pocatello’s 6-2 RS, emerged as an offensive factor against DV and also had three huge blocks. Defensively, Kayla Ellis, libero Jackie Cuttlers and DS Micquel Blattner were key in the Utah win.

When the team got to the Gold Bracket, the big concern with a team with only two seniors on the 11-player squad was maintaining focus. Pocatello seemed to thrive on the challenge of the tough competition and improved its serve-receive to generate a more efficient offense. Momentum fell in straight sets, as did gritty Cal Synergy and Amarillo Juniors 18 Royal.

By the time Pocatello Elite reach the finals, coaches Chris Werner and Tawna Ellis sensed that the team was tired and losing steam. The Idahoans dropped the first set of the bid match to Oregon NW Airmax, like Pocatello a young team with only two seniors. A strategy change was employed for the second set, as setter Sami Parris was directed to work the middle hard. Elgan and Brea Mitchell began finding a lot of success, which energized the team.

A 25-13 romp forced a third set. In the third the teams were deadlocked at 10-10 before Pocatello ran off the final five points when freshman Kayla Ellis served 2 aces and scored on a backrow attack, to claim the championship.



Comments Off on Kids Train & Play

Do you have a 5 to 11 year old that wants to learn the game of volleyball? IVA is offering a five week train-and-play course beginning on March 28 to teach kids the basics of volleyball, develop their skills and play some games. The cost of the course is $59.99 and runs on Wednesday evenings from 4:30 to 5:30 from March 28 to April 25. Registration is available at . Let IVA know if you have any questions.

Play on!





Comments Off on Two Intermountain Clubs Qualify for Junior Nationals

Salt Lake City (March 7,2012)- Two Intermountain Volleyball Clubs earned their spot in the Junior National Championships by virtue of high finishes at the Colorado Crossroads Junior National Qualifier. Pocatello Elite 18’s and Club Utah 18’s will represent the region and play in the Junior National Championships in Columbus, Ohio from June 28-July 7.

Pocatello Elite finished first in the 18 National Standings, besting Oregon NW 18 Air Max in the championship match. In the 18 Open Standings, Club Utah 18 Black finished in third place to snatch a bid of their own.

More than 300 college coaches and representatives were on hand to watch Colorado Crossroads giving the athletes another great opportunity to impress local and national college coaches to take their game to the next level after graduating high school.

Intermountain Clubs will get another chance to qualify for Nationals at the Intermountain Bid Qualifier May 4-5 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

About Intermountain Volleyball

The Intermountain Volleyball Association is a non-profit organization affiliated with USA Volleyball, the national governing body for amateur volleyball. The primary objective of the IVA is to furnish an opportunity for volleyball players to participate in an organized schedule of tournament play. IVA offers different programs in which a team or an individual may participate: Adult, Junior, High Performance, Indoor, and Outdoor. Each of these programs has its own Program Coordinator who formulates schedules, procures tournament sites, arranges for officials, and communicates information to the team representatives.