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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Olympian Alumni to Play at Stadium Dedication

The exhibition match will feature Olympic silver medalists April Ross and Jennifer Kessy.

USC alumni and Olympic silver medalists April Ross and Jennifer Kessy will be back on campus Thursday to play the inaugural sand volleyball match in the new Merle Norman Stadium.

After months of construction, new sand volleyball courts opened up on campus on Thursday. (ATVN)
After months of construction, new sand volleyball courts opened up on campus on Thursday. (ATVN)

Ross and Kessy won the silver medal in the 2012 Olympics after losing the final game to the United States' Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings. The duo also won the 2009 sand volleyball world championship.

The dedication ceremony for the new stadium begins at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday and is free and open to the public. The match will start at 5 p.m.

The new stadium is across Figueroa S
treet from the Galen Center and includes three courts, bleachers, a scoreboard and audio system, restrooms and showers. USC's team will play its second season in the stadium.

The Women of Troy played its first season at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica. USC coach Anna Collier said the new, on-campus training location will cut out hours the team used to waste in travel each day.

Sand volleyball is still considered an emerging sport by the NCAA. It needs ten more college teams to reach the 40 the NCAA requires for it to hold a national championship.

The women of troy are ranked third nationally by a pre-season coaches poll.

USC's team has 14 players, including six returning players, two former USC indoor volleyball players, three transfers and three freshmen.

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