Zana

Zana Muno of the USA

They knew it was a gamble. Knew that scrambling flights on Monday afternoon to get into Germany late on Tuesday for the Volleyball World Hamburg Elite16, to play a qualifier match early Wednesday, with no training and a different ball was, at the very least, a small risk.

Yet Americans Zana Muno and Lauren Fendrick have no regrets about making the last-second trip across the world.

No regrets about traveling upwards of 30 hours round trip for a total of 30 minutes of volleyball. That’s roughly how long their one and only match of Wednesday’s qualifier, a 21-16, 21-6 loss to Spain’s Sofia Gonzalez and Paula Soria, took to end their trip. Yet neither would change a thing about their decision to come.

“Any time I get the opportunity to step on the court with Zana I’m going to take it,” Fendrick said. “Tough conditions, not the way we wanted it to go. I love this sport. It shows you what’s lying underneath. It puts you in situations like this and we had an opportunity to perform. That pressure is a privilege and it’s not always going to go your way. It’s not always going to click,but you can still have the characteristics of being a good teammate, fighting for every point. I’m just grateful underneath it all just for what this sport’s taught me. I don’t like leaving the court like that but it’s a privilege. That’s what it comes down to.

“I’m stoked we got the opportunity. I’d do it again.”