July 5, 2013

Collegiate competition remains on hiatus for the remainder of the summer, but many Buckeye student-athletes are still busy representing their respective nations on the playing field, court and even pool.

From the United States to Italy, Ohio State’s diverse culture is prominently displayed with the following list of current student-athletes and recent graduates to watch for in international play during the months ahead. Updates throughout the summer will be provided on as well as the links provided below.

Men’s Basketball – Amedeo Della Valle
Italian Men’s U-20 National Team

Marking his return to international play, rising sophomore Amedeo Della Valle will represent Italy at the 20-and-under FIBA European Championship. Taking place in Tallinn, Estonia, the tournament will run from July 9 to July 21. 

A native of Alba, Italy, Della Valle led Italy in scoring with 15.1 points per game in the 18-and-under European Championship just two years ago. An injury in the quarterfinals, however, kept the Buckeye guard from guiding his squad to a much-desired Top 3 finish. In his absence, Italy finished just short of the podium in fourth-place.

Coming off his freshman year at Ohio State, Della Valle owns a Big Ten Tournament Championship and an Elite Eight NCAA Tournament run, the longest of any European player this season in NCAA basketball. The added experience from his freshman season at Ohio State will be valuable for Della Valle, who will face teams with similar make-ups this summer to those at the European Championships in 2011.

In preparation for the 2013 championship event, the Italian squad recently hosted the Domegge Tournament in the town of Domegge di Cadore, Italy.

With 15 points in the final game against Ukraine, Della Valle helped Italy finish out the tournament with an undefeated record. Along with Italy and Ukraine, the 20-and-under teams from Bulgaria and Georgia also participated.

Italy will open competition at the U-20 European Championship against France on July 9. The French took the runner-up spot in the last U-20 European Championship held in Slovenia.

Diving – Cheyenne Cousineau
U.S. World Championship Team

Earlier this summer junior diver Cheyenne Cousineau solidified a spot on Team USA for the FINA World Championships being held July 20 to July 28 in Barcelona, Spain. As one of 15 divers chosen to represent the United States, the meet will mark Cousineau’s third major international competition since joining the national team in 2012.

“Competing with Team USA in Spain is a huge opportunity not only for myself individually, but also as a team with my synchro parter Murphy Bromberg,” Cousineau said. “It’s an incredible honor to represent the country at such a prestigious meet.”

A native of Temperance, Mich., Cousineau punched her ticket to Barcelona with a first-place finish in the women’s synchronized 10-meter platform event alongside fellow Ohioan Murphy Bromberg at the USA Diving FINA Championship Trials. Taking place May 15–20 in Tallahassee, Fla., the meet attracted some of the strongest diving competition in the nation. The pair of Cousineau and Bromberg garnered a final round score of 599.23, a 74-point differential from the runner-up contenders.

“Murphy and I have been training to make the FINA World Championships since last summer, so to reach that goal was great,” Cousineau continued. “Now we are just looking forward to gaining experience on the international scene together while having fun and enjoying our time in Spain.”

Cousineau is no stranger to national diving competitions. Most recently, she competed at the 2012 AT&T National Diving Championships where she placed third in the synchronized 10-meter platform event. As a Buckeye, Cousineau’s accolades thus far include winning the 2012 Big Ten championship on the 10-meter dive as well as earning All-America accolades at the 2013 NCAA Championships.

Women’s Soccer – Danica Wu and Tiffany Cameron
Canadian National Team

With names like Tiffany Cameron and Danica Wu, the Canadian National Team roster will remain familiar to followers of the Ohio State women’s soccer program well into the future. Both players have earned playing time for the squad this summer, including an international friendly against the United States on June 6.

The matchup with the U.S. contingent was the first action Wu, a rising senior for the Buckeyes, has seen as a member of the Canadian National Team. Cameron, a recent graduate of Ohio State, played her first matchup with Team Canada at the Yongchuan Cup where the group took on Norway, Korea Republic and China (Jan. 8). Each previously competed with Canada’s 20-and-under team before advancing to Olympic national team play.

With Ohio State soccer on break until the 2013 season opener on Aug. 23, Wu has continued to spend time with the national team throughout the summer. Most recently, she played in a friendly against Germany on June 19.

The Canadian squad will return to the pitch October 30 at Edmonton Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Alberta to take on Korea Republic.

A native of Edmonton, Alberta, Wu tallied three assists in 12 games for Ohio State after missing the start of the season playing for Canada at the U-20 Women’s World Cup and the final six games with a broken leg. In November, she was named one of six nominees for Canadian U-20 Player of the Year.

Hailing from Mississauga, Ontario, Cameron graduated from the Buckeye program as the all-time leading goal scorer with 40 and racked up a school record 96 career points. Selected as a 2012 NSCAA second-team All-American and two-time first team All-Big Ten honoree, Cameron currently plays for FC Kansas City.

Women’s Swimming – Samantha Cheverton and Zulal Zeren
Canadian World Championship Team and Turkish World Championship Team

Two members of the Ohio State women’s swimming family will have the opportunity to represent their country this summer at the FINA World Championships in Barcelona, Spain. Samantha Cheverton, a 2012 Olympian and former member of the Ohio State program from 2007-11, will compete with the Canadian National Team, while freshman Zulal Zeren will represent the Turkish National Team.

Now a three-time member of Team Canada, Cheverton earned her spot after finishing second in the 200 freestyle (1:58.80) and fourth in the 100 freestyle (55.67) at the Canadian World Championship Trials earlier this summer. A native of Lachine, Quebec, she has continued to train at Ohio State after receiving her degree in psychology in 2010.  During her time as a Buckeye, Cheverton captured a Big Ten title in the 200 freestyle and broke individual varsity records in the 200 and 500 freestyle events.

Expected to begin her Buckeye career this fall, Zeren recently represented her native Turkey at the 2013 Mediterranean Games held in Mersin, Turkey. At the meet, she placed third in the 200 backstroke with a Turkish-record time of 2:14.93. She currently holds a Turkish record as a part of the 4×200 freestyle relay (8:25.01), which was also set at the 2013 Mediterranean Games. 

Taking place July 28-Aug. 4, the swimming events of the FINA World Championships are scheduled to occur after the diving competition concludes.

Men’s Volleyball – Michael Henchy, Driss Guessous, Brennan Anderson and Pete Hanson
U.S. Men’s Junior National Team

The Buckeye impact on the U.S. Men’s Volleyball Junior National Team will be evident with two high profile tournaments quickly approaching. The squad will represent the United States this summer at the U-21 Pan American Cup (July 12-20) as well as the FIVB Volleyball Men’s U-21 World Championship (Aug. 22-Sept. 1).

Ohio State head coach Pete Hanson will lead the program with help from Penn State assistant Jay Hosack and Pacific assistant Jonah Carson.

The Buckeye coach was elected to helm Team USA following a gold-medal showing at the 2012 NORCECA Men’s Junior Continental Championship. At Ohio State, Hanson has tallied 15 MIVA regular season titles and 10 NCAA appearances, including the program’s first national title in 2011. Ohio State team statistician Jake Schick will accompany Hanson during his time with Team USA serving as a technical assistant for the squad.

Hanson narrowed his 12-player roster from a field of 22 after a tryout period in Southern California, June 16-20. From the Buckeyes, junior Michael Henchy and redshirt freshman Driss Guessous advanced to the final roster, while junior Brennan Anderson was selected as an alternate.

A native of Ventura, Calif., Henchy plays outside hitter for the Buckeyes. During his sophomore campaign, Henchy led the team in kills with 301 on the year and a 3.34 average. He also ranked among the Top 10 nationally in hitting percentage (.352) and was named to the MIVA All-Conference First Team. Henchy was also part of Hanson’s U.S. contingent that brought home gold at the Junior Continental Championship last summer.

Another member of Team USA’s Junior Continental Championship roster was Guessous, who played for the squad before beginning his time at Ohio State. The Pasadena, Calif., native, redshirted the 2013 season and will return next season with freshman eligibility. He is expected to play middle blocker for the Buckeyes moving forward.

Anderson, a libero from Newport Beach, Calif., concluded his sophomore season as the nation’s leader in digs, averaging 3.12 per set. He totaled 16 double-digit dig performances, including a career-best 24 against IPFW in February.

The U-21 Pan American Cup will take place July 12-20 in Costa Rica. Following the event, Team USA will reconvene at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs to train for the FIVB Volleyball Men’s U-21 World Championship held in Ankara and Izmir, Turkey, Aug. 22-Sept. 1.