AVP Tour Legend Holly McPeak Announces Immediate Retirement from 2009 Tour

Beach Volleyball Legend to End Career on the Sand, Effective Immediately

Holly McPeak sends a shot across the net at her last tour event in San Diego

Holly McPeak sends a shot across the net at her last tour event in San Diego at Harrah

LOS ANGELES, May 6, 2009 – Holly McPeak, living beach volleyball legend, is hanging up her bikini…for good. McPeak will retire from AVP Crocs Tour, effective immediately, it was announced today.

McPeak is one of the most celebrated and decorated professional beach volleyball players in history. She represented the United States in three consecutive Olympic Games, competing in beach volleyball in 1996, 2000, and 2004, where she claimed the bronze medal with then-partner Elaine Young, marking the first medal for U.S. women. Domestically, McPeak held the record for most career wins from June 6, 2004 until May 20, 2007 (72), when her record was broken by Misty May-Treanor. She now stands third on the all-time list behind May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh. In 2002, she became the first woman worldwide to surpass $1 million in career earnings on both the domestic and international tours. 

McPeak finished in ninth place last weekend at the AVP Crocs Tour San Diego in what would be her last event, playing with Jenny Kropp. 

Reactions from fellow athletes and the AVP are below: 

“As a beach volleyball player, it doesn’t get much better than having played with Holly. Without Holly taking a chance on a rookie (me) I wouldn’t be in the position I am today,” said Misty May-Treanor, two-time Olympic gold medalist and AVP Crocs Tour star. “I want to thank her for laying the foundation not only for me but for all the young women that will come after. She is a mentor, competitor, and friend who has taught me that with discipline and hard work anything is possible. Thanks, Holly, for all of the tremendous years you gave to the sport of beach volleyball. I enjoyed our journey together.” 

 “I could go on and on about how much I respect and admire Holly,” said Kerri Walsh, two-time Olympic gold medalist and AVP Crocs Tour star. “She’s had an amazing career to say the very least, and helped pioneer the sport for us ladies. She has never ever let anyone or anything stand in the way of her hopes and dreams. Holly will go down in history as one of the world’s best and I am personally very grateful to have had her to help motivate, inspire and push me to be the best I could and can be. She will be missed but she will undoubtedly continue to help shape the future of the sport.” 


Holly McPeak in Huntington Beach

Holly McPeak in Huntington Beach



“Holly has had a tremendous influence on beach volleyball, inspiring countless players and fans for so many years, being such a great ambassador for the game,” said Olympic gold medalist Karch Kiraly. “Beach volleyball won’t be the same without this living legend, but her legacy will live long and run deep through the sport.”

“There will never be another Holly McPeak,” said Todd Rogers, 2008 Olympic gold medalist and AVP Crocs Tour star. “Her tenacity on defense is unrivaled and her skill set in the sport is second to none. I will miss watching her play but wish her the best in all her endeavors.” 

“Everyone around here is really going to miss Holly,” said Phil Dalhausser, 2008 Olympic gold medalist and AVP Crocs Tour star. “She’s been a part of the sport for so long and has had such an impact on the game. You can’t replace that sort of influence.”

“Winning the bronze medal in Athens with Holly was a highlight of my career and an overwhelming accomplishment for us, our country, and our sport,” said Elaine Youngs, McPeak’s former partner. “I’m very grateful for the years Holly and I spent playing together.”

 “Coaching Holly and Elaine to their bronze-medal victory in Athens was such a special moment,” said Liz Masakayan, McPeak’s former coach. “Holly has worked so hard to be one of the most successful and well-known players in our sport, and her presence on tour will be greatly missed.”

 “Holly will not only go down as one of the greatest players of all time, but as one of the game’s greatest ambassadors,” said Chris “Geeter” McGee, longtime AVP emcee. “Her passion, competitive fire, work ethic and true love of the game will be missed. It has been an honor watching as a fan, announcing as an emcee and working side-by-side with her as a broadcaster. Holly and Leonard (Armato) together brought a shared vision to help bring this sport to new heights. I will miss my friend on the court but look forward to working with her on the sand calling games for many years. She is a great friend who has been an inspiration and mentor to so many of us. We will all miss watching ‘The Little Engine That Could’.”

 From everyone at the AVP, we will miss one of the great ambassadors for the sport of beach volleyball.   She is irreplaceable on the court and off.  She will be deeply missed and we at the AVP wish her all the best. 

About AVP, Inc.:

AVP, Inc. is a leading lifestyle sports entertainment company focused on the production, marketing and distribution of professional beach volleyball events worldwide. One of the fastest growing entities in the sports world, the AVP operates two of the industry’s most prominent national outdoor touring series, the AVP Pro Beach Volleyball Tour (1983) and the AVP Hot Winter Nights Indoor Tour (launched in 2008). The AVP is set to stage more than 35 events throughout the United States in 2009 and features more than 150 of the top men and women competitors in the sport. AVP athletes won both the women’s and men’s gold medals at the 2008 Games in Beijing, marking the first gold medal sweep by a single country in the history of Olympic Beach Volleyball. AVP is headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif. For more information, please visit www.avp.com


2009 San Diego AVP Photos and Video click here 

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