Our next matchup of the weekend comes out of the Pappy Waldorf Region and features volleyball superstar Carli Lloyd taking on basketball great Layshia Clarendon. Lloyd got here with a solid win over Patrick Christopher while Layshia (we're on a first name basis with her here at CGB...not really, but we wish we were) took down Sean Lampley. We'll take a closer look at both of them and then you can cast your vote to decide who moves on. You can take a look at the whole bracket here and voting will end Friday at noon. GO BEARS!
Cal Volleyball: USA National Team Tryouts (via calathletics)
From BTown85: "The anchor of Cal's Pac-10 Champion women's v-ball team and National POY, leading the Golden Bears to the NCAA Finals only to lose (again) to Penn St. What a stud !!!!"
She is only the second player in Cal women's volleyball history to be a three-time All-American, and the only setter to win AA honors. This past year, she led the Bears to a program best 30-win season, their first-ever Pac-10 championship, and their first-ever national championship match. In recognition for her amazing play, she was also named the National AVCA Player of the Year. She is the first Cal woman to ever earn this prestigious award.
"Carli Lloyd and Meagan Schmitt, the lone seniors on the Cal volleyball team, were taking a walk on Sunday night, only hours after the NCAA tournament bracket was released.
The cool, crisp November air seemed to hint at the end of the season, the end of the year ... but also the beginning of a new one.
Suddenly Schmitt stopped. She turned to her friend and roommate and asked her if she would be satisfied with getting to the final four, like they did as freshmen in 2007. "Would that be enough for you?" she inquired.
Lloyd looked at her and answered with the intensity that has become her trademark quality in four years at Cal. "Absolutely not," she said. "I can't imagine anything other than winning.""
As a representative for the US, she helped Team USA win two gold medals and bronze medal. She is the only three-time selection to the USA A2 National team in the program's history. Now that she has graduated, Carli is working out with the U.S. Women's National Training Team in hopes of making the 2012 Olympic team.
Carli ended up making the team as an alternate and is well positioned to take a prominent position on the national team in the future.
I don't know exactly what Layshia's legacy will be as an individual player. She's probably the best shooting guard in Cal history, depending on whether or not you think of Alexis Gray-Lawson as a point guard. But the legacy of the teams she led is secure: The greatest in Cal history.
And if you only remember her for one game, it's a doozy. When nobody else could score, it was Layshia who sank shot after shot, willing the Bears back against Georgia in the Spokane Regional Final with 25 points. The Bears wouldn't have made the Final Four without her. But we already knew that. Throughout the season she proved herself as a leader, both tangible and intangible. Is it normal for your leading scorer to also be your glue? I don't know, but that's how her teammates described her.
When Joanne Boyle left for Virginia, Clarendon helped hold the team together. She quickly became the go-to player for Lindsay Gottlieb. And yet her off-the-court record is perhaps even more impressive. She was the conference academic player of the year and a senior class award nominee in part because of her volunteer work. She's as well-rounded a player as I can recall, and has never felt the need to publicize her accomplishments. Perhaps that's why the push to win her the Senior CLASS award was so strong.
Her combination of team, individual, academic and community achievement is as strong an argument for CGB Hall of Fame enshrinement as there can be. #Vote4Layshia.
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