U.S. Olympic Committee
For Immediate Release
December 13, 2005

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The U.S. Olympic Committee today named gymnast Chellsie Memmel and long track speedskater Chad Hedrick as its November Athletes of the Month. The USOC Team of the Month honor was awarded to the U.S. Women’s World Gymnastics Team.
At the 2005 World Gymnastics Championships Nov. 22-27 in Melbourne, Australia, Memmel (West Allis, Wis.) edged teammate Nastia Liukin by 0.001 for the all-around gold medal with a total score of 37.824. In the closest finish since 1985, Memmel became the first U.S. woman to win the world all-around crown since Shannon Miller in 1994. Memmel also earned silver in the uneven bars and balance beam.
Hedrick (Spring, Texas) set a new world record in the 5000m and won a silver medal in the 1500m at World Cup 1 Nov. 12-13 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. At World Cup 2 Nov. 18-20 in Salt Lake City, Utah, Hedrick set a new world record in the 1500m and earned a bronze medal in the 5000m.
The U.S. Women’s World Gymnastics Team of Jana Bieger (Coconut Creek, Fla.), Nastia Liukin (Plano, Texas), Chellsie Memmel and Alicia Sacramone (Winchester, Mass.) dominated the competition at the 2005 World Gymnastics Championships Nov. 22-27 in Melbourne, Australia, winning a total of nine out of 10 possible medals (four gold, four silver and one bronze). Liukin won two titles, while Memmel and Sacramone earned one each. The squad earned 1-2 finishes in four events-all-around, uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise-on its way to the best performance ever by the U.S. Women’s Team at a World Championships, surpassing the five medals collected in 1993. The 2005 U.S. Women’s Team ties the 1987 Romanian squad for most medals won by a nation at a single World Championships since countries were limited to two athletes in a final.
Long track speedskater Jennifer Rodriguez (Miami, Fla.) placed second among the women after winning three medals-silver in the 1000m and bronze in the 500m and 1000m-at World Cup 2 Nov. 18-20 in Salt Lake City. She won gold in the 1000m and silver in the 1000m at World Cup 3 Nov. 26-27 in Milwaukee, Wis. and has already secured her spot on the 2006 U.S. Olympic Team in the 500m and 1000m.
Third place for the women went to volleyball’s Nancy Metcalf (Hull, Iowa), who scored a match-high 21 points to lead four players in double figures as the USA Women’s National Volleyball Team posted a 28-26, 25-23, 25-16 victory over Japan Nov. 20 to capture the silver medal at the FIVB World Grand Champions Cup in Nagoya, Japan. Metcalf had 19 kills with two blocks in the win and finished as the tournament’s second-leading scorer with 85 points on 77 kills and eight blocks. The Americans finished the event with a record of 4-1.
Second-place honors for the men went to luge’s Tony Benshoof (White Bear Lake, Minn.), who led the overall World Cup standings with 240 points after three races. He became USA Luge’s all-time singles leader in international medals won with 22 and was nominated to the 2006 U.S. Olympic Team. Benshoof won three World Cup medals-silver in Sigulda, Latvia Nov. 6, bronze on the 2006 Olympic luge course in Cesana Pariol, Italy Nov. 20 and silver in Altenburg, Germany Nov. 26. Benshoof slid to a gold-medal finish in the Challenge Cup series opener in Cesana Pariol Nov. 20, setting a new track-record time of 52.070 in the opening round.
Baseball’s Ryan Shealy (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) placed third for the men after being named Most Valuable Player at the 2005 CONCEBE Regional Olympic Qualifying Tournament Nov. 15-19 in Phoenix, Ariz. An infielder, Shealy led Team USA to a perfect 5-0 record and advanced the American squad to the 2006 COPABE Continental Qualifier in Cuba by batting .500 (10-for-20) with four doubles, one home run, five RBI and five runs scored. Shealy had the highest batting average of all six teams that competed in the tournament. In Team USA’s 9-3 victory over Panama Nov. 18, he went 4-for-4 with a home run, two doubles and three RBI.
In the team category, second place went to the U.S. Men’s Skeleton Team, which ranked first in the world after two World Cup events. Led by Zach Lund (Salt Lake City, Utah) in second place, three U.S. men finished in the top seven in Calgary, Alberta, Canada Nov. 10. On the second stop in Lake Placid, N.Y. Nov. 17, Eric Bernotas (Avondale, Pa.) won gold and Lund won bronze as four U.S. men placed in the top nine.
The USA Baseball Regional Olympic Qualifying Team placed third in the team category. The 2005 USA Baseball Regional Olympic Qualifying Team posted a perfect 5-0 record at the CONCEBE Regional Olympic Qualifying Tournament Nov. 15-19 in Phoenix, Ariz., advancing Team USA to the 2006 COPABE Continental Qualifier in Cuba. Team USA outscored its opponents 49-13 and posted victories over Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Nicaragua and Canada.

(first place votes in parentheses)


1. Chellsie Memmel, Gymnastics 46 (14)
2. Jennifer Rodriguez, Long Track Speedskating 20 (1)
3. Nancy Metcalf, Volleyball 14 (3)
Also receiving first-place votes: Erika Figge (Water Polo), Shauna Rohbock (Bobsled), Jamie Van Natta (Archery), Courtney Zablocki (Luge)


1. Chad Hedrick, Long Track Speedskating 35 (10)
2. Tony Benshoof, Luge 29 (5)
3. Ryan Shealy, Baseball 15 (1)
Also receiving first-place votes: Todd Hays (Bobsled), Jared Lawrence (Wrestling), Zach Lund (Skeleton), Clay Stanley (Volleyball), Rau’Shee Warren (Boxing), Reo Wilde (Archery)


1. U.S. Women’s World Gymnastics Team 47 (12)
2. U.S. Men’s Skeleton Team 24 (3)
3. USA Baseball Regional Olympic Qualifying Team 18 (4)
Also receiving first-place votes: Preston Griffall and Dan Joye (Luge), Todd Hays and Pavle Jovanovic (Bobsled), USA Women’s National Volleyball Team
For more information, please contact the USOC Media & Public Relations Division at (719) 866-4529.