Manager, Media Relations and Publications
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 29, 2008) – It has been 16 years since a U.S. men’s beach volleyball team had won back-to-back SWATCH FIVB World Tour events as Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers accomplished the feat in Stavanger, Norway on Sunday by winning the US$600,000 ConocoPhillips Grand Slam on the Vaagen Harbour centre court.
With a pair of wins Sunday over teams from the Netherlands and Germany, the top-seeded Dalhausser (Ormond Beach, Fla.) and Rogers (Santa Barbara, Calif.) validated their gold-medal success last Sunday in Paris. They placed second two weeks ago in Berlin where Brazilian Olympic champions Emanuel Rego and Ricardo Santos won the German title. They also completed the U.S. sweep of gold medals in Norway, as compatriots Misty May-Treanor (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Kerri Walsh (Santa Clara, Calif.) won the women’s final on Saturday.
The last-time the United States had a men’s team capture consecutive international beach volleyball titles was in March and April 1992 when Sinjin Smith and Randy Stoklos won back-to-back FIVB events in Rio de Janeiro and Sydney.
With their 29-27, 21-15 win in 56 minutes over 12th-seeded Jonas Reckermann and Mischa Urbatzka of Germany, Dalhausser and Rogers shared the $43,500 first-place prize and each received the special commemorative Viking sword that goes to the champions. The Americans have medaled in their last six SWATCH FIVB World Tour participations.
Dalhausser, who was named the SWATCH most outstanding player for the event, and Rogers also became the first U.S. men’s team to medal at the ConocoPhillips Grand Slam, where teams from Brazil had won the first nine gold medals.
With their two wins Sunday, Dalhausser and Rogers also moved within 40 points of tying Emanuel and Ricardo for the top spot on the qualifying list for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Emanuel and Ricardo have 5,500 points for their best eight SWATCH FIVB World Tour finishes since May 2007 with the Americans compiling 5,460 points. The Brazilians missed the ConocoPhillips Grand Slam due to a foot injury for Ricardo.
In Sunday’s semifinal, Dalhausser and Rogers scored a 21-19, 21-13 victory over 13th-seeded Bram Ronnes and Emiel Boersma of the Netherlands.
The final two events before the end of Olympic qualification are in Moscow this week and Marseille, France (July 15-20).
Complete results, photos and more information are available on the FIVB beach Web site at www.fivb.org/EN/BeachVolleyball/index.asp.