Former USC All-American women’s volleyball players April Ross and Jennifer Kessy will be one of two teams representing the United States in beach volleyball at the 2012 Summer Olympics.
It is the first Olympic appearance for Ross and Kessy, who just missed qualifying for the 2008 Olympics. They finished third among the American teams, but countries are allowed a maximum of two beach volleyball teams in Olympic play.
“I always watched the Olympics,” Kessy said at the U.S. Olympic Committee media summit in May. “I always found it super entertaining, but I never thought I would get there. It was a dream, but an unattainable dream. Everybody wants to go to the Olympics.
“I thought I’d have the chance in 2008 and just missed it, and I thought, ‘Maybe that was my chance.’ And then this opportunity came along, and we worked hard for it, and it’s definitely been a dream for too long.”
Added Ross: “It was like, ‘OK. Maybe this can happen.’ Then it was like, full-bore ahead. We’re going to do this.”
Kessy starred at USC from 1995 to 1998, while Ross was at USC from 2000 to 2003 when she helped the Women of Troy to NCAA titles during her final two seasons.
The other U.S. beach volleyball duo is two-time gold medalists Misty May and Kerri Walsh.