Two U.S. Men's Beach Teams Advance to Round of 16 at Klagenfurt
KLAGENFURT, Austria (August 1, 2014) –Two U.S. men beach squads advanced to the second round of single eliminations of the FIVB A1 Klagenfurt Grand Slam, after the teams of John Hyden (Pensacola, Fla.) and Tri Bourne (Aiea, Hawaii) along with Jake Gibb (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Casey Patterson (Huntington Beach, Calif.) earned wins on Friday.
The duo of Gibb and Patterson began their day with a win over Czech Republic’s Robert Kufa and Martin Tichy, 21-11, 21-16, to finish Pool A play, before upsetting Brazil’s fifth-seeded team of Emanuel Rego and Pedro Solberg Salgado in a tight match, 21-19, 18-21, 18-16.
"This tournament is amazing," Gibb said after the win. "We have had a real up and down year so far and we want nothing more than to be on the podium this week."
Patterson had nothing but admiration for the Brazil's Rego after the win.
"Playing against Emanuel (Rego) is an honor," Patterson said. "I love playing against him, more than anyone else. He is more than professional, he's the best player in the world and at 41-years-old he still jumps higher than most players."
The U.S. squad will take on Lativa’s fourth-seeded tandem of Samoilovs and Smedins tomorrow in the round of 16.
Despite dropping their first match of the day to Latvia’s fourth-seeded team of Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins, 18-21, 17-21, Hyden and Bourne bounced back in the round of 32 to defeat fellow Americans Todd Rogers (Santa Barbara, Calif.) and Theo Brunner (Ridgefield, Conn.), 21-16, 21-13.
The pair will face Chile’s No. 28-seeded team of Esteban Grimalt and Marco Grimalt in Saturday’s second round of eliminations.
The lone women’s squad on the sand, top-seeded Kerri Walsh Jennings (Saratoga, Calif.) and April Ross (Costa Mesa, Calif.), were upset on Friday in the round of 16, after losing to Germany’s eighth-seeded team of Karla Borger and Britta Buthe, 18-21, 21-16, 10-15.
Saturday will feature the second and third rounds of eliminations to cut the men beach squads down from 16 to eight, followed by the semi-final and final rounds on Sunday.