I just returned from Grand Cayman, the largest of the Cayman islands in the Carribbean where I played in my first tournament of the 2011 season. It was a NORCECA event, which is an international tour that involves all North American and Central American countries. My partner, Brooke Hanson and I were excited to start the season with a win in while representing USA. Additionally, since the Olympic qualification procedures changed for this upcoming Olympics, the NORCECA tour now qualifies one Olympic spot. It is unlikely that the USA will need to qualify a team through NORCECA, but it feels good to win a tournament that is considered Olympic qualification caliber.
Brooke and I have been working extremely hard since December and the win is a nice reassurance that our hard work is making us better. Brooke and I played sharp the entire tournament and we did not even lose a set.
We also had the incredible opportunity to swim with dolphins and pick up and pet giant (about 60 lb.) and baby sea turtles(see picture above). The ocean water was incredibly turquoise and it was a dream to swim in it between each match. The event staff worked incredibly hard and it showed. I want to thank everyone in Grand Cayman for putting on a great event!!
Looking forward, I am excited to build off this win and to keep improving. My sights and goals are long term but my focus is day to day, moment to moment. Up next is Brasilia, Brasil, the first FIVB Olympic Qualification event, in two and a half weeks!