Mon | Dec 5, 2016

Wallen hoping to lead Ja beach volleyballers to Rio

Published:Monday | April 20, 2015 | 12:00 AMShayne Fairman

Ace-blocker Sasha Lee Wallen is hoping to lead the country's quest for a beach volleyball spot at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Their first step will be the women's beach volleyball Olympic Qualifier and Caribbean Beach Volleyball Championships at the Ocho Rios Bay Beach, St Ann, from May 1-3.

"Where beach volley ball is concerned, I am fairly new. However, I have a lot of potential to grow. My main strength that always carries me through is that I'm recognised as a strong blocker," she said.

 

best blocker

 

Jamaica's two female teams - Danielle Perry and Alicia Malcolm, and the duo of Sasha Lee Wallen and Kai Wright - will be looking to progress from May's tournament.

"I've been awarded best blocker many times, and, on the beach so far, I've had more than 10 blocks, which is not normal on the beach circuit," she continued.

Wallen was a scholarship athlete at Wolmer's Girls, and went on to play competitively in Poland. Now back home, Wallen dreams of donning the black, green and gold in Rio 2016.

 

under-16 Ja team

 

Wallen made the first under-16 Jamaica team while at Wolmer's Girls.

"We went away, and because I did great there, I decided this is what I wanna do professionally. That was when I quit track and field for Volleyball," she noted.

She has played indoors professionally from age 16, and is now determined to make her mark on the beach volleyball circuit.

"It will only get better from here. If we win this, (May 1-3 qualifiers) we will go to the second round of the tournament. Having Jamaica in the Olympics is a major goal for volleyball, so we just need everyone behind us to help us achieve that goal," she added.