COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 9, 2013) – Both U.S. teams competing in the women's qualification round of the FIVB Beach Volleyball Gstaad Grand Slam in Gstaad, Switzerland, have advanced to the main draw after the first day of competition on Tuesday.
The team of Jennifer Fopma (Bellflower, Calif.) and Brooke Sweat (Fort Myers, Fla.) had a bye in round one as the No. 2 seed in the qualification bracket. In round two, Fopma and Sweat defeated the Swiss team of Romana Kayser and Muriel Graessli in straight sets (21-14, 21-11).
Summer Ross (Carlsbad, Calif.) and Emily Day (Torrance, Calif.), seeded first in the qualification bracket, also had a bye in round one. In the second round, they defeated Janne Kongshavn and Cindy Treland of Norway, 2-0 (21-16, 21-12).
The U.S. now has four women’s teams competing in the main draw at Gstaad. Fopma/Sweat and Ross/Day join compatriots Lauren Fendrick (Carlsbad, Calif.) and Brittany Hochevar (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) and April Ross (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Kerri Walsh (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) when main draw competition begins on Wednesday (July 10).
Gstaad will be the first time Ross and Walsh team up, as the two were last on opposite sides of the net in the final match of the London 2012 Olympic Games. Walsh and partner Misty May-Treanor won gold while Ross and Jennifer Kessy took the silver. After the games, Walsh took time off to give birth to a daughter. The Gstaad Grand Slam marks Walsh’s return to international beach volleyball.
Fopma and Sweat (No. 21) will compete in Pool E, with their first match against Spain’s Liliana Fernandez Steiner and Elsa Baquerizo McMillan, seeded No. 12, on July 10 at 11:30 local time.
Ross and Day, seeded 25th, move into Pool H and take on No. 8 Isabelle Forrer and Anouk Vergé-Depré of Switzerland on July 10 at 13:10 local time.
In Pool A, No. 17 Fendrick and Hochevar face off against the 16th-seeded Czech duo of Kristyna Kolocova and Marketa Slukova in their first match at 15:40 local time on July 10.
Ross and Walsh round things out in Pool G as the No. 10 seed. They begin competition on July 10 at 11:30 local time against No. 23 Jantine van der Vlist and Marloes Wesselink of the Netherlands.
In the men’s bracket, the U.S. duo of Nick Lucena (Davie, Fla.) and John Hyden (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) will compete in the qualification rounds on Wednesday (July 10). The No. 12 seed in qualification, Lucena and Hyden take on Italy’s Gianluca Casadei and Paolo Ficosecco, seeded No. 21.
Three U.S. men’s teams begin play in the main draw on Thursday (July 11); No. 3 Phil Dalhausser (Ventura, Calif.) and Sean Rosenthal (Redondo Beach, Calif.), No. 5 Jake Gibb (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Casey Patterson (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and No. 17 Todd Rogers (Solvang, Calif.) and Ryan Doherty (Ventura, Calif.).
The main draw tournament for each gender is made up of 32 teams. In the first phase there are eight pools of four teams apiece that compete in round robin play. Twenty-four teams (the top three finishers from each pool) advance to the second phase, which is single elimination.
Women’s pool play finishes on July 11, with semifinal matches on July 13 and final matches on July 14.
Men’s pool play concludes on July 12. Semifinal matches will be played on July 13 with final matches wrapping up on July 14.
For more information about the Gstaad Grand Slam, click here.