April 25, 2024

"American Style" in VC Wiesbaden

“American Style” in VC Wiesbaden

BMost of the instructors are “open minded” and adventurous as well. With these basic criteria, volleyball coach Benedict Frank describes the five American players on his team. It is true that the 41-year-old attaches great importance to concern for the privacy of each individual. But a certain deal can already be determined, “American Style” has found its way to VC Wiesbaden ahead of the first leg in Schwerin on Friday (8pm).

Setter Gina Potts of Pennsylvania and setter Jameson Lee of Texas are the latest additions to the Hessian Bundesliga side. Both joined VCW mid-season after the club had to add its squad due to several injuries. There were already three more Americans, including Justin Wong Orantes, who won gold with the US team at this summer’s Olympics.

No professional league in America

What they all have in common is that they played volleyball in college before looking for their way to Europe after graduating at the age of 22 or 23 – since there was no professional league in America they could continue with. A system that works quite differently from Germany, but that is exactly why the Bundesliga is so popular. American college graduates are “well-trained” on the one hand, Coach Frank said, and on the other hand they come from abroad with the humble basic idea of ​​being just a “talent” to begin with. They are as ambitious as they are willing to learn, but also see a year or two as professional volleyball players in Europe as an adventure and a chance to see a piece of the world.

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Gina Potts revealed her background to her research before joining VCW: “She asked a little.” She also explained that she “talked to Molly,” and highly recommended her to VCW. “Molly” refers to Mallory Grace McKeig, who was the center hurdle center in Wiesbaden in the 2016/17 season before moving to Stuttgart. There McKeig won the German Championship and matured into a US National Player.

Knowledge has never been more valuable

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US national coach Kirsch Kiraly – an Olympic champion in indoor and beach volleyball who is himself a legend of his sport – makes the virtue of not having his own league in the country. The 61-year-old now watches what’s happening in Europe, stays in touch with his players, and brings the best together on a team in the summer – with the American women not only topping the world rankings, but also becoming the 2014 world champions and Olympic champions of the year. 2021.