Silver Medalists Ross/Kessy To Participate In New Merle Norman Stadium Dedication
March 4, 2013
2012 London Olympic beach volleyball silver medalists April Ross and Jennifer Kessy will play the first-ever match in USC's new Merle Norman Stadium, as dedication ceremonies will be held this Thursday (March 7) at 4:30 p.m. for the new on-campus home to the Women of Troy sand volleyball team.
Following the dedication hosted by USC athletic director Pat Haden, Ross and Kessy--who were All-American indoor players at USC before forming one of the world's finest women's beach duos ever--will play an exhibition alumni match at 5 p.m.
The dedication ceremony and alumni match are free and open to the public. To RSVP, go to usc.edu/ESVP and enter Sand.
Merle Norman Stadium, located on the east side of campus on Figueroa Street across from the Galen Center, features 3 courts with sand from the U.S. Olympic Training Center. The palm tree-encircled stadium also has bleachers and a grass berm for spectator seating, a scoreboard and audio system, lighting, restrooms, showers and a storage area.
The 2013 Women of Troy are ranked third nationally in the American Volleyball Coaches Association pre-season coaches poll. They open their season this Sunday (March 10) hosting No. 4 Florida State and Loyola Marymount.
USC is now in the second year fielding a women's sand volleyball team, an NCAA "emerging sport." There are currently 30 schools nationally that sponsor the sport, closing in on the 40 teams required to be an NCAA-sanctioned championship sport.
Last year, USC went 7-4 and sent 2 teams to the pairs portion of the AVCA Collegiate Sand Volleyball Championship. The Women of Troy played their 2012 home matches at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica.