TORONTO – A month removed from being named BYU’s head women’s volleyball coach, Heather Olmstead helped the U.S. Women’s Volleyball National Team capture gold in the 2015 Pan Am Games. Olmstead served as an assistant to Dan Fisher, head coach of Pitt women’s volleyball and a former assistant coach at San Francisco.
“What an incredible experience,” said Olmstead. “I loved working with this team and with Coach Fisher. I learned a lot from him and from all our players. I’m so proud of how they came together as a team in such a short period of time. It’s an honor to represent the United States and bring home the gold.”
This marks the second time the U.S. women have won the Pan Am Games gold medal. The other gold came in 1967. It is the 12th Pan Am Games medal the U.S. women have won.
Team USA finished pool play with a 2-1 record, earning 3-0 sweeps against Puerto Rico and Peru while falling to Brazil in a five set heartbreaker.
In the medal round, the U.S. defeated Cuba 3-1 in the quarterfinals and the Dominican Republic 3-1 in the semis to set up a rematch with Brazil in the gold medal match. Team USA avenged its only loss of the tournament with a convincing 3-0 sweep (25-22, 25-21, 28-26) to capture the title.
Visit TeamUSA.org for more information on the gold medal match against Brazil.
Prior to being named the head women’s volleyball coach for the Cougars in June, Olmstead was an assistant to her brother Shawn at BYU from 2011-14. During that time, she helped guide the Cougars to four straight Deseret Duel titles, two WCC championships, three trips to the round of 16 at the NCAA Championships, and coached five AVCA All-Americans.
This past fall Olmstead helped lead BYU women’s volleyball to its most successful season in school history, going 30-5 and advancing to the national championship match at the NCAA tournament for the first time in program history.