By Todd Kortemeier | Aug. 03, 2018, 12:01 a.m. (ET)

(L-R) Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena compete in the FIVB Gstaad Major on July 13, 2018 in Gstaad, Switzerland.

 

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The United States will look to maintain its place atop the medal table of the 2018 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour at the Vienna Major that began Tuesday in Austria. 

Three pairs of American women stayed alive on Thursday by winning their elimination matches. Moving on to Round 2 are the sixth-seeded team of Alix Klineman and two-time Olympic medalist April Ross, the 14th-seeded team of Sara Hughes and Summer Ross, and the 17th-seeded team of Kelley Larsen and Emily Stockman.

They join two other American teams that earned byes into the second round, and both will form all-American matchups on Friday. Thirteenth-seeded Kelly Claes and Brittany Hochevar won their pool, and they will face off against Larsen and Stockman. Also winning their pool were the 29th-seeded Sarah Sponcil and Olympian Lauren Fendrick. They will face Klineman and Ross. 

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Both the second and third rounds take place Friday, with the semifinals and finals on Saturday.

On the men’s side, Olympian Nick Lucena and Olympic gold medalist Phil Dalhausser finished second in their pool to advance to Friday’s first-round playoffs. Theo Brunner and two-time Olympian John Hyden also finished second while Taylor Crabb and three-time Olympian Jake Gibb won their pool.

Following Friday’s first round, the men’s second and third round playoffs take place Saturday, with semifinals and finals to follow on Sunday.

Todd Kortemeier is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.