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Bermuda volleyball teams warm-up for Island Games

Bermuda men’s and women’s national volleyball teams are putting the final touches to their preparations for the NatWest Island Games.

Both sides have been training and competing abroad since the turn of the year, and this weekend travel to Louisville, Kentucky for the US Open Volleyball Championships.

Representing the men’s national team are Ian Bucci, Daniel Fiddick, Jon Gazzard, Mike Gazzard, Dave Gletsu, Keiran Hamilton, Gary LeBlanc and Brad Meindersma

Head coach Bill Bucci said the team were excited to see how they “stacked up” at the Championship.

“Our travel team roster for this event has players with a variety of experiences,” he said.

“We have players who have been part of the national team programme since the beginning in 2002, such as Jon Gazzard, Mike Gazzard, and Gary LeBlanc.

“We have players who have come up through the ranks of the BVA youth programme, such as Ian Bucci and Daniel Fiddick; and we have a current member of our youth programme in Keiran Hamilton.

“Dave Gletsu and Brad Meindersma are experienced players who have been with the programme for several years. The competition at this event is always at a high level and we can't wait to see how we stack up.”

Following the US Open, the women’s national team will travel to Kingston, Jamaica, for the second round of the 2014 FIVB World Championships, to compete against the likes of Jamaica, Suriname and Nicaragua from June 1-2.

The top three teams from this tournament will advance to the third round of qualifying.

Representing the women’s national team at the US Open are Lisa Leblanc, Stacey Dorush, Melissa Fiddick, Wendy Gazzard, Allison Lacoursiere, Denise Mullican, Khianda Pearman-Watson, Elisabeth Rae, Alana Rathbun Swiss, Vikki Stevenson, Heather Wearmouth.

Slight changes will be made to the squad for the Jamaica tournament, with Michaela Eberly and Sarah Mentzel coming in for Wendy Gazzard, Allison Lacoursiere and Heather Wearmouth.

Head coach Juanita Blee said: “The ladies team is looking forward to our trips to both Kentucky and Jamaica. These events are key to our training as warm-up for the NatWest Island Games as it will give team members an opportunity to play at a higher level of competition and get some experience under our belt before the Games.”

The Island Games, held on home soil from July 13-19, will see Bermuda’s volleyball team take on European powerhouse islands such as Saaremaa, Faroe, Aland, and Gotland.

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Published May 22, 2013 at 9:20 am (Updated May 22, 2013 at 9:20 am)

Bermuda volleyball teams warm-up for Island Games

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