Larsen named interim U.S. coach to fill in for grieving McCutcheon

Updated: August 10, 2008, 4:42 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

BEIJING -- Assistant Ron Larsen has taken over as interim head coach of the U.S. men's volleyball team after coach Hugh McCutcheon's in-laws were attacked.

McCutcheon's father-in-law, Todd Bachman, was fatally stabbed Saturday while at a popular Beijing tourist site, the 13th-century Drum Tower. His mother-in-law, Barbara Bachman, is in serious condition at a hospital.

"As a team, there is nothing more important to us than supporting Mrs. Bachman in her struggle and supporting Hugh and Elisabeth in their grief," men's volleyball team spokesman Rob Browning said. "We are absolutely devastated by what has occurred, for their loss and for everything they are going through.

"Hugh has been in touch with the team throughout this tragedy and we're extremely proud of the strength he and Elisabeth are displaying. They know we're here for them in every way possible.

"We're banding together as a team to lift up the Bachmans and McCutcheons. We are a family, and we'll get through this together as a family."

The couple's daughter, 2004 Olympian Elisabeth Bachman McCutcheon, was with them but wasn't hurt.

McCutcheon was a member of the U.S. women's volleyball team at the Athens Games, and was recently married to Hugh McCutcheon.

Two of Todd and Barbara Bachman's other adult daughters were flying to China to be with their mother and Elisabeth, Dale Bachman said at a Friday news conference in Minneapolis.

Larsen, formerly the head coach at UC San Diego, is in his fourth season with the U.S. men's national team. The U.S. team was scheduled to open its Olympic competition later Sunday against Venezuela.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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