Penn State Volleyball

Two former Nittany Lions are headed to the Olympics

United States players Karsta Lowe, left, Tetori Dixon, right, and Christa Harmotto Dietzen, center, admire the championship trophy after their 3-0 win over China and winning the women's FIVB World Grand Prix volleyball championship in Omaha, Neb., Sunday, July 26, 2015.
United States players Karsta Lowe, left, Tetori Dixon, right, and Christa Harmotto Dietzen, center, admire the championship trophy after their 3-0 win over China and winning the women's FIVB World Grand Prix volleyball championship in Omaha, Neb., Sunday, July 26, 2015. Associated Press

Two more former Nittany Lions are headed to the Olympics.

Alisha Glass and Christa Harmotto Dietzen were among the 12 women named to the roster for the U.S. women’s national volleyball team Tuesday morning by head coach Karch Kiraly.

Harmotto, a middle hitter, is the U.S. team captain and helped Penn State to national championships in 2007 and 2008. Glass, a setter, joined Harmotto Dietzen on those NCAA title teams and also helped Penn State to the 2009 NCAA crown.

Harmotto Dietzen started for the U.S. at the London Olympics in 2012, helping the team to a silver medal.

“Christa’s story has so many special facets, two of which are in leadership and overcoming adversity,” Kiraly said on teamusa.org. “Nobody wins a tournament like the Olympics without facing down major adversity, so she’s well-equipped to play a key role in guiding us through those challenges.”

Glass was an alternate for the 2012 Olympics, and she was named USA Volleyball’s Female Indoor Athlete of the Year in 2013 and 2014.

“Alisha is one of the best in the world at what she does, and she’s won at every possible level,” Kiraly said on teamusa.org. “We can’t wait for her to unleash that deep and varied skill set in Rio.”

Nebraska has three alumni on the women’s roster, and the Cornhuskers join Penn State as the only schools with multiple representatives on the team.

“I am thrilled for the athletes who have been selected because it is such a demanding an arduous process,” Penn State head coach Russ Rose said in a statement. “I am excited for Alisha, who was an alternate in 2012 and Christa, who has made the team again.”

In addition, Nicole Fawcett and Megan Hodge Easy were named alternates for the team. Eight women are on that list. Hodge Easy was on the 2012 team, while Fawcett also was an alternate that year.

Dietzen and Glass join former Nittany Lions Aaron Russell, Max Holt and Matt Anderson, who were part of the U.S. men’s roster announced earlier this summer.

The Olympics will be held Aug. 6-20 in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. The U.S. women open the tournament against Puerto Rico on Aug. 6.

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