Omaha, USA, July 26, 2015 – USA’s Karsta Lowe has made an impressive impact on the international volleyball game in just her first season, and today she was named the MVP (Most Valuable Player) of the FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix Finals Omaha 2015 after leading the Americans to the gold medal with an undefeated record.
Lowe, age 22, finished the tournament with 77 points, including 65 attack points and 12 blocks. She converted 65 of her 115 attacks for a 56.5 success percent as she finished third in Best Scorer and first in Best Spiker.
“It is really exciting and I didn’t expect it,” Lowe said. “I am having a lot of fun. I owe it a lot to my team.”
“Did I expect this, not necessarily,” Lowe said. “I had hoped that I would be able to get to this level at this time, but I didn’t know if it would be possible. I am really excited and humble to be here now.”
“Now looking back on it, it is all kind of a blur,” Lowe said. “We went to so many places – Turkey, Russia and Hong Kong and here in Omaha. I would say, all-and-all just the travel and hanging out with the girls and bonding with the girls are the most memorable experience.”
Karsta Lowe receives her medal from FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F°
USA had three other players represented on the Dream Team. Molly Kreklow was selected as the Best Setter and Kelsey Robinson was chosen as the 2nd Best Outside Spiker. Christa Harmotto Dietzen earned the 2nd Best Blocker award. Kreklow and Robinson, both age 23, are in just their second season with Team USA helping to form a strong youth core for the present and future.
Kreklow, who stepped into the starting setter role in the absence of 2014 FIVB World Championship Best Setter, did an admirable job in her first FIVB event.
“I was definitely a little nervous and not knowing what to expect,” Kreklow said. “I knew I just wanted to do my best for the team. I know with how many great players we have that we had a good chance at winning. I have definitely learned a lot and it has been an amazing experience and I am so thankful to be here. I definitely didn’t expect it. I definitely have dreams and goals that I want to pursue. I just want to get better each and every day and not think too much about the future whatever that may hold. I just know I am here with so many great people, and I couldn’t be more thankful.”
Nataliya Goncharova of Russia was selected as the Best Opposite Spiker. She was the tournament’s Best Scorer with 101 points (85 spikes, 14 blocks, 2 aces) and was second in Best Spiker with a 47.9 attack percent (85-179). Russia teammate Anna Malova was tabbed as the Best Libero. Brazil’s Juciely Barreto was chosen as the 1st Best Blocker after averaging 1.29 blocks per set. Her teammate Natalia Pereira earned 1st Best Outside Spiker with a 36.9 attack percent and ranking eighth in scoring with 54 points.
FIVB World Grand Prix Finals Dream Team
MVP (Most Valuable Player): Karsta Lowe (USA)
1st Best Outside Spiker: Natalia Pereira (Brazil)
2nd Best Outside Spiker: Kelsey Robinson (USA)
1st Best Blocker: Juciely Barreto (Brazil)
2nd Best Blocker: Christa Harmotto Dietzen (USA)
Best Libero: Anna Malova (Russia)
Best Setter: Molly Kreklow (USA)
Best Opposite Spiker: Nataliya Goncharova (Russia)