June 14, 2013
BERKELEY - Cal incoming freshman Alyssa Jensen has been selected to play on a Pac-12 Conference All-Star Volleyball team that will compete in China later this month.
Jensen, who enrolled at Cal in the spring, will join 12 other players from the Pac-12 to play at least six matches against Chinese professional club teams during a two-week span in Beijing and Shanghai.
The players also will have the opportunity to explore Chinese culture and attractions, with trips planned to Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, the Great Wall and more.
"This is going to be an amazing experience," Jensen said. "My main focus is to just take in what the girls do and how they play. Being able to practice with them, see their mentality, how they act, how they practice - it's going to be a huge learning experience for me. I think I'll definitely be able to take what I learn and apply it to my own game."
Jensen, a 5-10 setter from St. Louis, is a former Missouri Gatorade Player of the Year. She was named a First Team All-American by Under Armour and a Prepvolleyball.com All-American as well. Jensen also was a "Fab 50" selection by Volleyball Magazine.
"I am very excited for Alyssa and the Cal program," Cal head coach Rich Feller said. "This is an opportunity for her to grow her volleyball knowledge and travel and play with some of the best players in the Pac-12. I know the experience Alyssa gains from this trip, representing Cal, will pay off or her as her career at Cal progresses. I want to wish Alyssa and the rest of the Pac-12 athletes the best of luck competing in China."
Jensen will be joined by some of the top returning players in the conference, including AVCA All-Americans Lauren Plum and Liz Brenner of Oregon. USC's Natalie Hagglund, the 2012 Pac-12 Libero of the Year, is also on the roster.
The team gathered in Los Angeles on Friday and will depart for Shanghai on Saturday night. The team's first match is on Wednesday and its final match will take place on June 25. The team, which is being led by USC coach Mick Haley, returns home on June 27.