COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (June 1, 2013) – The U.S. women’s beach volleyball team of April Ross and Jennifer Kessy won their first medal of the season as they took silver on Saturday at the FIVB World Cup Final in Campinas, Brazil.
Ross and Kessy, seeded No. 2, fell to Brazil’s No. 1 Maria Antonelli and Talita Da Rocha Antunes, 23-21, 21-12 in 41 minutes in the gold medal match, which began at 10:30 a.m. in Brazil.
On the men’s side, No. 2 seeded Jake Gibb (Bountiful, Utah) and Casey Patterson (Van Nuys, Calif.) advanced to Sunday’s gold medal match with a 21-19, 22-20 victory in 43 minutes over Latvia’s No. 4 Martins Plavins and Janis Smedins on Saturday.
Gibb and Patterson will face Brazil’s No. 1 Alison Cerutti and Emanuel Rego in Sunday’s final.
In the women’s final, the first set was close, but Antonelli's serves were a handful for her opponents and Brazil forced a U.S. error to take the set 23-21. The U.S. team won $35,000 for second place.
"We were having trouble setting Maria's jump serves," Ross said in an FIVB press release. "It was hard for me to push it up to the net. Certain conditions favor certain servers and I think Maria has a lot of topspin on her jump serves, so she was fine in these conditions."
Gibb and Patterson, who were destined for a tournament exit until Norway's surprise win against Canada in the final round of pool matches on Friday, took advantage of some Latvia mistakes to pull back small deficits in both sets. Patterson was thankful for the opportunity to advance.
"We thank Norway for beating Canada and for letting us score lots of points on them," he said. "Because that's the only way it was possible, that [Norway win] was huge for us. I was very surprised [Norway won], but very happy at the same time. It just goes to show that anyone can beat anyone at any time; you can never have a rest day; you can never take a match off."
In the men’s bronze medal match, Plavins and Smedins will face Germany’s No. 3 Jonathan Erdmann and Kay Matysik.
In the women’s bronze medal match on Saturday, Germany’s No. 4 seeded Katrin Holtwick and Ilka Semmler defeated Australia’s No. 7 Louise Bawden and Taliqua Clancy, 16-21, 21-19, 15-10 in 49 minutes.
To view the men’s results, click here.
To view the women’s results, click here.