By Paul D. Bowker | July 13, 2018, 12:01 a.m. (ET)
(L-R) Nicole Branagh and KerrI Walsh Jennings compete at the Gstaad Major on July 11, 2018 in Gstaad, Switzerland.


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Sara Hughes and Summer Ross, who won their first FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour medal as a team last week in Espinho, Portugal, go after a second consecutive podium this weekend in the FIVB five-star Gstaad Major in Gstaad, Switzerland.

They are joined by four U.S. teams in the women’s main draw and five U.S. teams in the men’s main draw, including top seeds Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena.

Hughes and Ross are the eighth seeds in the women’s tournament. April Ross, a two-time Olympic medalist, and Alix Klineman are the fifth seeds, and 2016 Olympian Lauren Fendrick and Emily Day are the 16th seeds. Three-time Olympic gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings and 2008 Olympian Nicole Branagh are 20th.

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Dalhausser, a three-time Olympian, and 2016 Olympic teammate Lucena won the season-opening five-star tournament in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Joining them in the men’s tournament are the teams of two-time Olympian John Hyden and Theo Brunner, three-time Olympian Jake Gibb and Taylor Crabb, and two-time Olympian Sean Rosenthal and Chase Budinger.

Kelley Larsen and Emily Stockman advanced to the women’s main draw through qualifying, and Bill Kolinske and Miles Evans were in the men’s qualifier.

The men’s finals are scheduled for Saturday, followed by the women’s finals on Sunday.

The Gstaad Major is one of just three FIVB five-star tournaments this year.

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