Hamburg, Germany  - elite16 - Beach Pro Tour 2022 - News


Zana Muno was so close. Close to home. Close to a week off between the AVP Atlanta Gold Series and the Manhattan Beach Open. And then, laying over at the Denver airport on her return from Atlanta, just a two-and-a-half-hour flight from LAX, she got the news: She and Lauren Fendrick had just slipped off the reserve list and into the qualifier of this week’s Volleyball World Elite 16 event in Hamburg, Germany.

Within hours, she had a new itinerary. She was no longer going home. She was no longer taking that week off. She was no longer 150 minutes from the end of her journey. She was, rather, only beginning.

She was on her way to Germany.

That’s the whirlwind of a life balancing the AVP and Volleyball World tours. One must be ready to flip an itinerary from Los Angeles to Germany within minutes, or else lose your spot in the qualifier of the biggest international event of your career. Muno isn’t one to turn down opportunities; these are, in fact, exactly the type she has been holding out for since finishing second in a NORCECA in Aguascalientes, Mexico in April. She began embracing a mindset begat by Tim Hovland: With international travel as expensive as it is, she was holding out for the biggest events with the biggest points and the most to gain. She was becoming a Big Game Hunter.