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Kerri Walsh Jennings is a beach volleyball player competing at the 2012 London Summer Olympics.

After spending much of two seasons away from the court due to pregnancy, Kerri Walsh Jennings seeks a third consecutive Olympic gold medal with partner Misty May-Treanor. Walsh Jennings made her Olympic debut at the 2000 Sydney Games for the U.S. indoor volleyball team, which took fourth. She was back at the Games four years later, but on the beach with May-Treanor. Following a dominant year leading
Kerri Walsh Jennings in a bikini
Kerri Walsh Jennings in a bikini
up to the Athens Games, the duo cruised to a gold medal, the first by an American female tandem at the Olympics. Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor didn't lose a single set in seven matches. In Beijing, they became the first beach volleyball team to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals, and again they were unbeaten in seven matches (14 sets). May-Treanor plans to retire after the London Games, but Walsh Jennings does not.

Walsh Jennings returned to beach volleyball full-time in 2011 and played more FIVB World Tour events (12) than in any other season of her career. She and May-Treanor quickly returned to form as one of the best tandems in the world, advancing to the final in their first international event together since 2008. They lost that match in Brasilia, Brazil, to world No. 1 Larissa Franca and Juliana Felisberta Silva of Brazil, but went on to win three gold and four silver medals on the World Tour, which helped them finish second in the final world rankings. Walsh Jennings was named the FIVB's Best Blocker in 2011, her fifth such honor. In 2012, Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor played six World Tour events leading up to London but won only two medals — a silver in Moscow and a gold in Gstaad, their last appearance before the Games.

Soon after leaving the 2008 Beijing Games, Walsh Jennings learned she was pregnant with her first child. She and husband Casey Jennings, a fellow beach volleyball pro, welcomed Joseph Michael Jennings into the world on May 22, 2009. Within a year, on May 19, 2010, Walsh Jennings gave birth to their second son, Sundance Thomas Jennings. After both pregnancies, Walsh Jennings returned to the court within months, playing six events in 2009, and three in 2010. With Mom and Dad spending much of their summer in 2011 overseas on the World Tour, Joey and Sundance were along for the ride, as was Walsh Jennings' younger sister K.C. as the caretaker. Walsh Jennings was also named the FIVB's Most Inspirational in 2011.

When Walsh Jennings returned to action in 2009 after her first child, she played with Rachel Scott, another player who recently endured childbirth, because May-Treanor was sidelined with an Achilles injury. In 2010, with Walsh Jennings pregnant again, May-Treanor partnered with 2008 Olympian Nicole Branagh. But for the last two FIVB events in the fall, Branagh teamed with Walsh Jennings because May-Treanor didn't want to travel any more that season. Walsh Jennings and Branagh took fifth in their first tournament and won their second, the season finale in Thailand. It was the second title for Walsh Jennings and Branagh, who also won a late-season tournament together in Dubai in 2008.

In 2007, Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor became the first team — men's or women's — to win three consecutive world titles ('03, '05, '07) since the FIVB began hosting world championships in 1997. They didn't play in the 2009 Worlds, then advanced to the gold-medal match at the 2011 Worlds, but lost to Larissa and Juliana in three sets, a defeat that was especially tough considering the Americans had a four-point lead in the third game and later served for match point. It was just the second loss ever for Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor at the world championships; the other came in 2001, when the duo finished ninth. "I would say it's not that we take it for granted — winning and being dominant — but we expect it," Walsh Jennings says. "We've come to expect it, we're very capable of it, and there's so much room for us to grow."

Through the 2011 season, Walsh Jennings had 107 career titles (international and U.S.), a mark that ranks second all-time behind May-Treanor's 110. All but five of Walsh Jennings' wins have come with May-Treanor — 64 in the U.S. and 38 internationally. That first number is the best among American women, but the second is second-best internationally. Brazil's Larissa and Juliana own 42 career FIVB titles as a team, as they surpassed Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor in 2010. But the Americans own the longest winning streak in the history of the sport — 112 straight matches and 19 consecutive tournaments (domestic and international) between 2007 and '08. The previous best was 90 straight, which Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor set in 2003. The FIVB World Tour champions in 2002, Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor were named the AVP's Team of the Year from 2003-08.

May was Walsh's volleyball hero, even though May was only one year older and they competed against each other as California prep players. They met when Walsh was a sophomore. In awe of May, Walsh asked her for an autograph after her team defeated May's in the early 1990s. On the beach, May first teamed with Walsh in 2001, after their parents met randomly at a family center during the 2000 Olympics, and the idea of teaming up their daughters was first broached. Walsh had never played on the beach, but once she committed, it took only a year for the partnership to really take off. The duo finished fifth in the world rankings in '01, then battled to the top of the standings the following year. Although Walsh and May didn't play as often overseas after 2002, they were dominant whenever they did show up on the World Tour. Through 2011, the duo had won 38 of the 70 FIVB events it played.

Walsh Jennings isn't exaggerating when she says, "I've been around athletes my whole life." Her father, Tim, pitched in the Oakland A's minor league system and her mother, Margie, and two younger sisters all played volleyball. Walsh Jennings' brother, Marte, briefly played basketball at Cal Poly and her grandfather, Marte Formico, played football for Santa Clara University. Walsh Jennings' cousin Marcia Wallis, a Stanford soccer player, was named the Pac-10 Player of the Year in 2002 and played professionally in the now-defunct WUSA.

In December 2005, Walsh married Jennings in La Quinta, California. On July 2 the next year, both players won the AVP event in Seaside Heights, N.J., making them the second married couple to win a U.S. title on the same weekend (Mike and Patty Dodd accomplished the feat four times). Walsh and Jennings later collected titles at the AVP San Francisco Open on Sept. 16, 2007, and before they were married, both won the AVP San Diego Open on June 12, 2005, and the Hermosa Beach Open on July 23-24, 2005. Kerri asked to be referred to as Kerri Walsh Jennings prior to the 2012 season.

Walsh Jennings also enjoyed tremendous success indoors. Regarded as one of the best Stanford women's volleyball players of all time, the Northern California-native helped the Cardinal capture back-to-back NCAA titles in 1996 and 1997. As a freshman in 1996, she was named the national semifinals Most Valuable Player. In 1999, she was named the national co-player of the year. Walsh Jennings finished her career among the top five in seven statistical categories at Stanford and was a first-team All-American all four years.

May-Treanor and Walsh Jennings showed up in the homes of millions of Americans in February 2004, when the pair appeared in a Visa commercial that aired during Super Bowl XXXVIII. The 30-second ad shows the two — identified only by their first names — playing in their bikinis on the snow and ice, and shooting fingers to decide who retrieves the ball from the icy water. May-Treanor won. "I've never been in a situation like that," Walsh Jennings said. "It's five below, we're pulling up to a commercial set, we're supposed to strip down to our Speedos. It was a new experience for me, which was a lot of fun."


How tall is Kerri Walsh Jennings? How old is Kerri Walsh Jennings? Where does Kerri Walsh Jennings live? Find out here.

Age: 38 years old
Birthday: August 15, 1978
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 154 lbs.
Full Name / Real Name: Kerri Lee Walsh
Birthplace: Santa Clara, CA
Current Residence: Hermosa Beach, CA
Husband: Casey Jennings (12/4/2005, 2 children)

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