Career Highlights: Thornton will be making his first Olympic appearance in London, continuing a rapid rise since joining the national team in 2009 and winning a gold medal at the Pan American Games. He was a solid contributor in the 2011 World Cup, finishing eighth among all players with 5.64 assists per set _ well above his 5.19 average overall in 99 sets of play in 2011 _ as the U.S. placed sixth in the tournament. He was on the roster for the NORCECA Men’s Continental Olympic Qualification Tournament in May, but saw little action behind Donald Suxho as the U.S. clinched its spot in the Olympics by winning the tournament. Thornton, who contributed nine sets in reserve duty in the final round of the World League in July, attended UC-Irvine collegiately, winning the NCAA tournament in 2007. At the club level, he played for Chaumont in France in the 2010-11 season.