COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Emily Day and Jennifer Kessy earned the USA it's firt women's medal of the 2016 FIVB World Tour when they clinched bronze on Saturday morning at the Antalya Open in Turkey.
The third-place finish for Kessy/Day is the team's top finish together and their first podium appearance during the 2016 Olympic qualification window.BEACH ON TV | U.S. BEACH NEWS | 2016 Top 25 Finishes
Kessy and Day were seeded sixth in the tournament and made a clean 3-0 sweep of their pool, which included fellow Americans Summer Ross/Lane Carico (14-21, 22-20, 15-7). In the second round they needed three sets to displace Russia's Evgenia Ukolova/Ekaterina Birlova, 21-16, 18-21, 15-13. From there, the pair knocked off Austria in two sets to earn their place in the semifinals against the eventual gold medalists from the Czech Republic.
In the round of four, Marketa Slukova/Barbora Hermannova topped Kessy/Day 16-21, 21-15, 15-13. The Americans faced off against Argentina's Ana Gallay/Georgina Klug in the bronze medal match, needing just over an hour in their second third-frame match of the day to earn third.
The bronze is Day's first podium appearance since 2013, and second-best international performance in her career. For Kessy, who did not compete in 2014, it is her first medal since 2013.
Carico/Ross tied for ninth after being eliminated in the second round by Austria, following their 2-0 victory over Sweden in the round of 16. All four U.S. women's teams made the Top 25, the teams of Kimberly DiCello/Kendra Van Zwieten and Ali McColloch/Emily Stockman each tied for 17th after losing in round one.
Two American men's teams also finished in the Top 25, led by Stafford Slick/Mark Burik who tied for 17th and Derek Olson/Marty Lorenz who tied for 25th. Slick/Burik made it to round one but were halted by Poland in three sets. It was the first event together for Slick and Burik, and also marked a career best finish for Burik on the FIVB World Tour.
BEACH ON TV
From the Antalya Open in Turkey, catch the women’s medal matches on the 25th at 10 a.m. ET. The men’s medal matches will air on the 25th at 3 p.m. ET and replay on the 26th at 1:30 a.m. ET. Watch all four medal matches back-to-back on the 27th starting at 6 a.m. ET and on the 28th starting at 10:30 a.m. ET.
WEEK IN REVIEW
FIVB Antalya Open
Jennifer Kessy/Emily Day won bronze, their first medal together as a team, first U.S. women's medal in 2016
Summer Ross/Lane Carico finished 9th, seventh T25 finish in Olympic qualifying season
Kimberly DiCello/Kendra Van Zwieten, tied for 17th, second T25 finish together
Ali McColloch/Emily Stockman tied for 17th, first T25 finish together since 2014
Stafford Slick/Mark Burik tied for 17th, first event together, career best finish for Burik
Derek Olson/Marty Lorenz tied for 25th, first event together, career best finish for Lorenz
UPCOMING EVENTS | Add to your schedule | BEACH ON TV
Nov. 9-13 FIVB Doha Open
Jan. 26-31 Vitoria, Brazil
Feb. 14-19 Kish Island, Iran (Men only)
Feb. 23-28 Maceio, Brazil
March 8-13 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
FIVB Antalya gold for new Czech team Slukova and Hermannova
FIVB 2015 FIVB World Tour update after FIVB Puerto Vallarta Open