COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Volleyball saw an early exit at the FIVB World Tour Finals from its two women's teams in attendance and one of the men's teams. Olympians Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena remain in action in Saturday's men's quarterfinals.
Both U.S. women's pairs at the FIVB World Tour Finals were eliminated in the Round of 12 on Friday morning from Hamburg, Germany. April Ross/Lauren Fendrick and Brooke Sweat/Summer Ross tied for ninth, respectively, with losses in the first round of the elimination bracket.
Casey Patterson/Theo Brunner were eliminated in their loss to Germany in the Round of 12. Still in play at the tournament are Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena, who won their pool on Thursday and earned a day of rest ahead of their quarterfinal match at 5 a.m. ET, Saturday.
Fendrick/A. Ross fell to Switzerland's Joana Heidrich/Anouk Verge-Depre, 21-15, 21-13 in their Round of 12 match.
"It wasn't our day at all," said A. Ross. "We're not at 100-percent right now and it showed a lot on this match. It's a bummer to come all the way here to the World Tour Finals and not be able to play your best. We're super thankful for the opportunity, but it just wasn't going to happen for us on this tournament."
The duo went 1-2 on the week, posting their only victory during pool play against the other Swiss team.
Sweat and S. Ross also tied for ninth with a loss in the opening round of single-elimination, 21-18, 13-21, 15-9 to Barbora Hermannova/Marketa Slukova of the Czech Republic.
"We just broke down on the third set," S. Ross said afterward. "We couldn't pass and just let them have it. They brought their game in the third set and we didn't."
With the loss, Sweat/S. Ross finished the 2017 World Tour with six Top 10 finishes, including one silver medal.
"We are bummed about our performances in the last two matches," added Sweat. "It has been a long season and we need to learn from this. We'll see what we can take back and hopefully start making changes."
Though Patterson/Brunner had their best finish in the last four tournaments, tying for ninth fell short of their aspirations.
"I try to be positive," Patterson said. "I don't always play perfect, Theo doesn't always play perfect. There is no room for negativity within a team. Maybe ranking wise, or expectation wise, on paper we're bigger and look like we should win. That's a great team that played very well."
The duo lost 21-19, 21-17, to Germany's Markus Bockermann/Lorenz Schumann, despite having leads in the match. During the week, Patterson/Brunner earned one win during pool play, against Brazil, but finished 1-2 overall after also dropping a match to Russia.
Remaining in the tournament are Dalhausser/Lucena, who will play Ben Saxton/Chaim Schalk of Canada. The match is at 5 a.m. ET on Saturday, with the winner advancing to the semifinals and medal matches on Sunday. Dalhausser/Lucena won their pool 2-0 to earn their automatic berth into the quarterfinal, giving them a break from play on Friday. Against Saxton/Schalk, the Americans lead the series 3-1, which most recently includes a victory in pool play at the Porec 5-Star this past June.
Of the teams remaining in the men's quarterfinals, Dalhausser/Lucena own a winning series record against all but two, which they have yet to play.
|WEEK IN REVIEW|
|Dalhausser/Lucena||Herrera/Gavira Spain||Win 21-19, 21-13|
|Patterson/Brunner||Evandro/Andre Brazil||Win 21-18, 16-21, 15-13|
|Patterson/Brunner||Krasilnikov/Liamin Russia||Loss 18-21, 21-17, 15-10|
|A. Ross/Fendrick||Betschart/Huberli Switzerland||Win 21-16, 21-16|
|Sweat/S. Ross||Larissa/Talita Brazil||Win 21-19, 24-22|
|Dalhausser/Lucena||Doppler/Horst Austria||Win 21-17, 21-19|
|A. Ross/Fendrick||Agatha/Duda Brazil||Loss 21-14, 21-17|
|Sweat/S. Ross||Ludwig/Walkenhorst Germany||Loss 21-18, 21-12|
|Aug. 25||Round of 12|
|Tied 9th||A. Ross/Fendrick||Heidrich/Verge-Depre Switzerland||Eliminated 21-15, 21-13|
|Tied 9th||Sweat/S. Ross||Hermannova/Slukova Czech Republic||Eliminated 21-18, 13-21, 15-9|
|Tied 9th||Patterson/Brunner||Bockermann/Schumann Germany||Eliminated 21-19, 21-17|
|5:15 a.m. ET||Dalhausser/Lucena||Saxton/Schalk Canada|
|Swatch FIVB World Tour Finals Roster|
|Brooke Sweat||Summer Ross||Via World Rankings|
|April Ross||Lauren Fendrick||Jon Daze||Wild Card|
|Phil Dalhausser||Nick Lucena||Jason Lochhead||Via World Rankings|
|Casey Patterson||Theo Brunner||Rich Lamborne||Wild Card|
|Aimee Miyazawa||USAV Beach Head Athletic Trainer|
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