Feb. 22, 2011

NORMAN, Okla. – University of Oklahoma volleyball student-athletes Brianne Barker (Amarillo, Texas) and Sallie McLaurin (Midwest City, Okla.) have been selected to attend the United States Women’s National Team Open Tryout Feb. 25-27 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

The 208 participants are competing for spots on the U.S. Women’s National Team, U.S. Women’s National A2 Program and U.S. Women’s Junior National Team.

“We are extremely excited for Brianne and Sallie to be trying out for the national team,” said Oklahoma Head Coach Santiago Restrepo. “We’re honored to have both of them in our program and can’t wait to see their progress.”

Among the 208 tryout participants representing 81 different colleges are 57 outside hitters, 52 middle blockers, 46 liberos, 27 setters and 26 opposites. A total of 65 athletes are also eligible to be evaluated as U.S. Women’s Junior National Team prospects. McLaurin is one of the 65 eligible for the Women’s Junior National Team.

Barker, a setter, was named to the 2010 American Volleyball Coaches Association All-America third team. She averaged 10.39 assists per set on the year, 2.67 digs per set and produced a .288 hitting percentage. Her 1,340 assists set an Oklahoma 25-point rally scoring record and ranks as the fifth highest single season total in program history. She recorded the first triple-double in Oklahoma program history and had 19 double-doubles this season.

She led the Sooners to the third round of the NCAA Championship earning a spot on the University Park, Pa. all-tournament team for her efforts in OU’s loss at No. 8 Penn State on Dec. 10. Barker recorded a triple-double with 10 kills, 57 assists and 14 digs against No. 22 in the second round of the Championship on Dec. 4.

Barker commanded the Oklahoma offense to a .231 hitting percentage and 13.60 kills per set, its best offensive output since 2006 (.262, 16.28 kps). OU’s hitting percentage was the fourth-best in the Big 12 this year.
 
Middle blocker McLaurin was named the 2010 Big 12 Freshman of the Year. McLaurin was also named to the All-Freshman team. McLaurin earned Big 12 Rookie of the Week honors on Nov. 1 and Oct. 11. She led the team with 11 kills and a .417 hitting percentage in the third round of the NCAA Championship against No. 8 Penn State.

McLaurin had three double-doubles on the year and led the team in blocks 24 times this past year. Her .319 hitting percentage was a 25-point rally scoring single season record, as were her solo blocks (30) and block assists (123).

The Sooners finished the season 23-11 overall, the most wins since 28 during the 2006 season. Oklahoma finished third in the Big 12 with a 13-7 mark, the second highest win total for OU in the Big 12 era.