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“My childhood dream was to be the first girl in the MLB,” says Olympic beach volleyball player, Kerri Walsh Jennings. Little did she know then that she would grow up to become one of the greatest Olympic beach volleyball players of all time. Walsh Jennings grew up playing sports with her older brother and two younger sisters. Before transferring to beach volleyball, Walsh Jennings had a successful indoor career where she was a member of the United States National Team for two seasons and a right side hitter on the 2000 Olympic team.
SPORT: Beach Volleyball
BORN: August 15, 1978
HOMETOWN: Santa Clara, CA
HEIGHT: 6 ft 3 in
WEIGHT: 157 lb.
COLLEGE: Stanford University
OLYMPIC MEDALS: Gold Medalist in 2004, 2008, 2012
OTHER TITLES/NOTABLE WINS: Gold Medalist at 2007, 2005, 2003 World Championships. Silver Medalist at the 2011 World Championships.
FAVORITE TAPE COLOR: Black
FAVORITE TAPE APPLICATION: Deltoid activation
Nicknamed “Six Feet of Sunshine” due to her tall stature, Walsh Jennings asked Misty May Treanor for her autograph when she was a sophomore in high school. Nine years later, she ended up partnering with Treanor and won gold medals in beach volleyball in the 2004, 2008, and 2012 Summer Olympics. After Treanor retired in 2012, April Ross became Walsh Jennings’ new partner. Two shoulder dislocations last year forced Walsh Jennings to rely on Ross for support. “My injury was such a blessing because it brought us closer together,” says Walsh Jennings. Off the court, Walsh Jennings and Ross act like sisters and fit really well together.
With 3 Olympic gold medals and a fourth one in sight, Walsh Jennings plans to dominate at the 2016 Olympic Games. “We’re going to kick butt in Rio,” Walsh Jennings says. “We’ve worked really hard and we’re ready to go.” This sisterly connection helped them play strong at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio when they took home a bronze medal. “Winning the bronze medal meant so much to me. It was the hardest match I have ever played in my career,” says Walsh Jennings. With another medal under her belt, Walsh Jennings is looking forward to Tokyo in 2020.