U.S. Beach Teams to Square Off in Thailand
April Ross plays the net against Italy
B.J. Hoeptner Evans
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Oct. 25, 2012) – The U.S. women’s beach volleyball teams of Jennifer Kessy and April Ross along with Nicole Branagh and Lauren Fendrick have advanced to the third round of the Bangsaen Thailand Open, the final event on the women’s 2012 FIVB Beach Volleyball SWATCH World Tour.
The two U.S. teams, which both went 2-0 on Thursday’s first day of main draw play, will have to play each other in Friday’s third round.
The two other U.S. teams competing in Thailand – Heather Hughes (Fallbrook, Calif.) and Summer Ross (San Diego, Calif.) and also Emily Day (Torrance, Calif.) and Brittany Hochevar (Fowler, Colo.) – remain alive in the consolation bracket.
Kessy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.) and Ross (Costa Mesa, Calif.), the 2012 Olympic silver medalists who are seeded No. 2, opened play on Thursday with a 24-22, 22-20 victory in 46 minutes over Japan’s No. 31 Ayumi Kusano and Mutsumi Ozaki. They followed that with a 21-13, 21-14 win in 33 minutes over No. 18 Gioria Daniela and Laura Giombini of Italy.
No. 7 Branagh (Orinda, Calif.) and Fendrick (Carlsbad, Calif.), competing together for the first time, defeated Norway’s No. 26 Vilde Solvoll and Cindy Treland, 21-12, 21-7 in 32 minutes in the first round. In the second round, the U.S. pair beat their compatriots, No. 23 Day and Hochevar, 21-14, 21-19 in 42 minutes.
Day and Hochevar won their first round consolation match over Thailand’s No. 10 Varapatsorn Radarong and Tanarattha Udomchavee, 20-22, 21-17, 15-6 in 1 hour, 3 minutes. They will play Norway’s No. 24 Janne Kongshavn and Ane Guro Tveit Hjortland in consolation on Friday.
Hughes and Ross, seeded No. 22, won their first round match over No. 11 Miller Elwin and Henriette Iatika of Vanuatu, 16-21, 21-19, 15-13 in 43 minutes. They fell in the second round to Greece’s No. 6 Maria Tsiartsiani and Vasiliki Arvaniti, 21-14 24-22 in 39 minutes.
They will play Netherlands’ No. 21 Jantine van der Vlist and Merel Mooren in consolation on Friday.
The semifinals will be played on Saturday followed by the medal matches on Sunday.
More information about the event is available on the FIVB web site.