By Paul D. Bowker | Aug. 31, 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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Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena, along with Sara Hughes and Summer Ross, are the top seeds in The 2018 AVP Championships being held this weekend in Chicago.

Dalhausser, a three-time Olympian who won gold in 2008, and Lucena, his 2016 Olympic partner, are atop the men’s seedings ahead of second-seeded Taylor Crabb and Jake Gibb, and No. 3 Reid Priddy and Jeremy Casebeer.

Dalhausser and Lucena finished second to John Hyden and Ryan Doherty at last year’s championships.

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Hughes and Ross, who began playing together just four months ago, were the only U.S. beach team in the FIVB World Tour Finals. They lead the women’s seedings, followed by No. 2 Kelly Claes and Brittany Hochevar, and No. 3 Alix Klineman and two-time Olympic medalist April Ross. Hughes is looking for her second consecutive title after combining with college teammate Claes to win it in 2017.

The tournament, which began Thursday at the Oak Street Beach in Chicago, features 24 teams in the main draws of the men’s and women’s brackets. The finals are Sunday.

Two U.S. women’s teams are in Montpellier, France, this week for the first FIVB World Tour event in which Olympic ranking points will be awarded. Chasing after podium finishes in the one-star tournament are the teams of twin sisters Audrey and Nicole Nourse, and Melissa Powell and Allison Spurrier.

Paul D. Bowker is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc