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The U.S. women’s volleyball team secured its berth to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Sunday, beating Argentina in straight sets Sunday at a Tokyo women’s volleyball qualification tournament in Bossier City, La.

Middle blocker Tori Dixon, a former Gophers standout from Burnsville, is back in a key role with the U.S. after she was forced to miss the 2016 Olympics because of a left knee injury that required reconstructive surgery on her anterior cruciate ligament. She won Sunday on her 27th birthday.

“I am really glad with how we played, how we performed. It is a best birthday present ever, honestly,” Dixon said. “Our outsides and Jordan Thompson did a great job. They came in and carried a big load all summer long, especially today.”

Thompson (Edina) will return to the University of Cincinnati this fall. She had a match-high 16 points with 13 kills, two aces and a block in Sunday’s match.

Former Gophers Hannah and Paige Tapp (Stewartville), Sarah Wilhite Parsons (Eden Prairie), Lauren Gibbemeyer (St. Paul) and Samantha Seliger-Swenson (Minnetonka) also are part of USA Volleyball’s national team player pool.

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