U.S. Women's Beach Teams Hold Strong in Gstaad

By Darci Miller | July 10, 2013, 4:56 p.m. (ET)
 Brooke Sweat sets while Jennifer Fopma gets ready for the pass as the duo takes on Italy's Greta Cicolari and Marta Menegatti.

Darci Miller, USA Volleyball Communications Intern, Phone: 719-228-6800, Email: darci.miller@usav.org
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 10, 2013) – All four U.S. women’s beach volleyball teams competing in the Gstaad Grand Slam in Switzerland from July 10-14 walked away with at least one win as pool play began on Wednesday.

April Ross (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Kerri Walsh Jennings (Saratoga, Calif.) finished the day 2-0 in Pool G, which were their first matches as partners. Seeded No. 10, they defeated No. 23 Jantine van der Vlist and Marloes Wesselink of the Netherlands (21-19, 14-21, 15-10) and No. 26 Barbara Hansel and Katharina Schutzenhofer of Austria (21-15, 21-19).

“I think it was a really great day,” Walsh Jennings said. “It was ugly from time to time, but I feel like we didn’t panic and we played together. We have good energy and I feel we can build off that, so I’m really happy with today.”

Ross and Walsh Jennings are in second place in Pool G behind the seventh-seeded Brazillian duo of Maria Clara Salgado Rufino and Carolina Solberg Salgado, which they will face on Thursday (July 11) at 2 p.m. local time.

Also finishing 2-0 was the team of Jennifer Fopma (Bellflower, Calif.) and Brooke Sweat (Fort Myers, Fla.). Fopma and Sweat, seeded No. 21,  defeated the 12th-seeded team of Liliana Fernandez Steiner and Elsa Baquerizo McMillan of Spain (21-19, 16-21, 15-10) and fifth-seeded Greta Cicolari and Marta Menegatti of Italy (18-21, 21-14, 15-12). Fopma and Sweat sit in first place in Pool E and on July 11 will square off against No. 28 Jolien Sinnema and Michelle Stiekema of The Netherlands at 14:00 local time.

The team of Lauren Fendrick (Carlsbad, Calif.) and Brittany Hochevar (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) went 1-1 in its first two matches and sits in second place in Pool A. No. 17 Fendrick and Hochevar opened their day with an upset of the No. 1 Swiss team of Nadine Zumkehr and Joana Heidrich (24-22, 21-18) before losing to the 16th-seeded Czech duo of Kristyna Kolocova and Marketa Slukova (21-15, 21-18). On July 11 at noon local time, Fendrick and Hochevar will take to the sand against No. 32 Hana Skalnikova and Patricia Missottenova of the Czech Republic.

Summer Ross (Carlsbad, Calif.) and Emily Day (Torrance, Calif.) also finished 1-1 and are currently in third place in Pool H. Seeded No. 25, Ross and Day fell in their first match to eighth-seeded Isabelle Forrer and Anouk Vergé-Depré of Switzerland (21-14, 16-21, 15-13) but defeated ninth-seeded Maria Antonelli and Agatha Bedarczuk of Brazil (21-17, 31-33, 15-13). Ross and Day take on No. 24 Victoria Bienick and Julia Groβner at 1 p.m. local time on July 11.

In the men’s qualification bracket, the U.S. duo of Nick Lucena (Davie, Fla.) and John Hyden (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) failed to advance to the main draw after falling to Italy’s No. 21 Gianluca Casadei and Paolo Ficosecco (21-13, 20-22, 15-10).

There are three men’s teams representing the U.S. in the main draw, led by No. 4 Phil Dalhausser (Ormond Beach, Fla.) and Sean Rosenthal (Redondo Beach, Calif.) who are in Pool D. They face compatriots No. 17 Todd Rogers (Santa Barbara, Calif.) and Ryan Doherty (Toms River, N.J.) in each team’s first match on July 11 at 10 a.m. local time.

Also competing for the U.S. is the sixth-seeded team of Jake Gibb (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Casey Patterson (Huntington Beach, Calif.). Gibb and Patterson compete in Pool F and face off against the 27th-seeded Pablo Herrera Allepuz and Adrian Gavira Collado of Spain at 9 a.m. local time on July 11.

For more information about the Gstaad Grand Slam, click here.