LONG BEACH, Calif. - In the return tournament following the 2016 Olympic Games, Kerri Walsh Jennings and April Ross won gold and Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena earned silver at the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam on Sunday.
Days removed from the Olympic Games, the four U.S. Olympic Beach Volleyball Team duos competed at the World Series of Beach Volleyball in Long Beach. In addition to the American Olympians, 26 other Olympic teams got in on the action. The U.S. had 12 teams finish in the Top 25.
Kerri Walsh Jennings and April Ross beat Liliana Fernandez/Elsa Baquerizo of Spain, 21-16, 21-16 for their 11th gold medal as a team, fifth in 2016.
It was the fourth meeting of the two teams, and though the first set opened with the lead trading hands, it was USA that would gain the upper hand 21-16. The American women continued their winnings ways in the second set, winning it 21-16 for the gold and improved their series record against Lili/Elsa to 4-0.
With the win, Ross and Walsh Jennings have 17 FIVB medals, it marked Walsh Jennings' 55th FIVB gold and Ross' 21st.
For Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena, the gold medal match didn't end like their women counterparts, the pair fell to Brazil's Pedro Solberg/Evandro Goncalves 21-19, 17-21, 15-9.
The top ranked American men have eight podium finishes in 2016, four of those being gold. Dalhausser and Lucena won their pool for an automatic bid into the second round, where they swept Canada. In the quarterfinals, Dalhausser and Lucena beat Spain 21-16, 21-19 before going three sets against Italy's Alex Ranghieri/Marco Caminati 21-15, 17-21, 15-6, in the semifinal.
Olympians Lauren Fendrick and Brooke Sweat won their pool with a 2-1 record and placed fifth at the event after being eliminated by Ross/Walsh Jennings in the quarterfinals, 21-14, 21-18. The pair beat Poland in three sets in the second round prior to that.
In total, USA had five women's teams and five men's teams make it into the elimination rounds.
The 2016 FIVB World Tour concludes in Toronto, Canada, at the Swatch FIVB World Tour Finals, Sept. 13-18. Teams that qualify for the finals do so by ranking in the Top Eight in 2016 World Tour points, plus four wild card tandems for each gender. Rankings for: Women | Men. Winners of the event will pick up the largest purse of the year, $100,000 for the gold medal team.
WEEK IN REVIEW
Long Beach Grand Slam
- 1st April Ross/Kerri Walsh Jennings won their 11th FIVB team gold, fifth in 2016; last three outings have been a gold, bronze and silver
- 2nd Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena earned their eighth medal of 2016, 12th on the FIVB World Tour as a team
- t5th Lauren Fendrick/Brooke Sweat in their 13th tournament of 2016, duo was eliminated in their fourth quarterfinal tying their best finish on the season
- t9th Theo Brunner/Billy Allen; Lane Carico/Summer Ross, Kelly Claes/Sara Hughes
- t17th Emily Day/Irene Pollock; Jake Gibb/Casey Patterson, John Hyden/Tri Bourne, Trevor Crabb/Taylor Crabb
- t25th Kelley Larsen/Betsi Metter; Stafford Slick/Mark Burik
- Lost in qualification: Kendra Vanzwieten/Kimberly DiCello; Ryan Doherty/John Mayer
UPCOMING EVENTS | Add to your schedule
Sept. 1-4 AVP Chicago
Sept. 13-18 FIVB World Tour Finals
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