Class of 2017Active: 1971 - 1977
6 Open Victories
Born in Hermosa Beach, Rose Duncan was one of the premier beach players of the 1970s. She won three Manhattan Opens, each time with a different partner.
Duncan attended Mira Costa High School, but did not start playing volleyball until entering El Camino College. She took to the game quickly and at close to 5’ 10” was considered one of the taller players of her era. While at El Camino, Duncan met Sharkey and Pat Zartman and began playing for their legendary indoor team, the Spoilers.
Soon after, Duncan started mixing beach into her volleyball training and playing local tournaments. In the early 1970s it was difficult to even find nets set at a women’s height to train on, so Duncan and the other pioneers of this era would often make due with a men’s net.
In 1971, she shocked the best teams of the day by winning her first Manhattan Open with Susie Malpee. To this day, Duncan considers this first win at Manhattan her most memorable and satisfying victory. Two years later, she teamed with Kathy Gregory to win her second Manhattan Open and the following year, in 1974 captured her third Manhattan Open title with Nina Matthies. She also won two Hermosa Opens as well as the 1977 Rosecrans Open.
Duncan balanced playing on the beach with an outstanding indoor career. She was one of the first Americans to play in Europe, competing for two seasons at CUS Roma. Duncan was a three time USVBA All-American and competed for four seasons on the IVA, the first U.S. professional league.
At the top of her game both on the beach and indoor, Duncan moved to Colorado and then New Mexico, giving up her playing career. After two decades away from the sport, she now makes her home in San Diego where she plays weekly with a group of former players, reconnected to the sport she once dominated.
Written by: Chris Warshaw