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USA beach teams dazzle on way to elimination rounds

By Corinne Calabro | Feb. 09, 2017, 11 p.m. (ET)

Results MEN | WOMEN
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Play continued from the Sunshine State as the Fort Lauderdale Major completed pool play and moved into the elimination rounds on Thursday.

All five American men's teams advanced into the elimination rounds, Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena, Theo Brunner/Casey Patterson, Jake Gibb/Taylor Crabb each went 3-0 to sweep their pools. Brooke Sweat/Summer Ross and April Ross/Kerri Walsh Jennings swept their pools among five U.S. women's teams that advanced.

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In the early afternoon Dalhausser and Lucena defeated Russia in two sets to clinch Pool A unscathed. USA's other No. 1 seed, Ross and Walsh Jennings, played two matches on Thursday, the first a 2-0 victory against Finland. The pair returned seven hours later to defeat the resilient Brazilian team Barbara Seixas/Fernanda Alves, 17-21, 21-18, 15-8.

Arguably the best play of the entire tournament came in the third set of Sean Rosenthal and Trevor Crabb's eliminating loss to Spain's Pablo Herrera/Adrian Gavira in round one. The pair dropped the first set 21-18 and came back with an intense battle in the second before lightning halted play at USA's set point, 20-19. Officials then cleared the stadium until the inclement weather passed some 30 minutes later. Rosenthal and Crabb pushed it to a third set after a Spain miscue, 21-19.

The third frame was an all-out battle with teams trading points through the regulation 15-point mark. Crabb and Rosenthal's amazing play (pictured above) staved off a Spain match point when they trailed 13-11. The U.S. forced Spain into nine ties in extra points, but eventually fell 25-23.

Thursday's highlights
Patterson and Brunner picked up where they left off on Wednesday, moving past their opponents as a cohesive unit on the court. The pair won their pool after defeating their second German team, Bennet Poniewaz/David Poniewaz 21-17, 19-21, 15-13.

Gibb and Taylor Crabb needed three sets to beat Pablo Herrera/Adrian Gavira of Spain, but with the 21-18, 15-21, 15-13 victory they swept their pool and earned a bye into the second round. Sweat and Summer Ross took advantage of their schedule after playing two matches on Wednesday. They entered Thursday's lone match rested and beat German Olympic gold medalist Kira Walkenhorst and her partner Julia Grossner in 33 minutes, 21-14, 21-13.

After starting an hour behind schedule, Hyden and Doherty came from behind in their first round matchup against Italy's Alex Ranghieri/Marco Caminati, 19-21, 21-12, 15-12.

Records as of Thursday
Dalhausser/Lucena 3-0 pool play; advance to Round 2
Brunner/Patterson 3-0 pool play; advance to Round 2
Gibb/Taylor Crabb 3-0 pool play; advance to Round 2
Hyden/Doherty 2-1 pool play; def Italy Round 1; advance to Round 2
Ross/Walsh Jennings 3-0 pool play; advance to Round 2
Fendrick/Hughes 2-1 pool play; advance to Round 1
Claes/Reeves 2-1 pool play; advance to Round 1
Sweat/S. Ross 3-0 pool play; advance to Round 2
Hochevar/Day 2-1 pool play; advance to Round 1
Rosenthal/Trevor Crabb 2-1 pool play; eliminated in Round 1; t17th
Carico/Pollock 0-3 eliminated in pool play; t25th

Fort Lauderdale 5-Star Roster 
Athletes        Coach   Entry
April Ross    Kerri Walsh Jennings   Marcio Sicoli   Main Draw
Brooke Sweat    Summer Ross   Ty Tramblie   Main Draw
Lauren Fendrick   Sara Hughes       Main Draw
Lane Carico    Irene Pollock   Jason Lochead   Main Draw Wild Card
Brittany Hochevar   Emily Day   Hector Gutierrez   Qualifier
Kelly Claes    Kelly Reeves       Qualifier Wild Card
Emily Stockman   Kimberly DiCello       Qualifier
             
Phil Dalhausser 
Nick Lucena   Paul Baxter   Main Draw
John Hyden   Ryan Doherty*   Jon Daze   Main Draw
Jake Gibb   Taylor Crabb       Main Draw
Casey Patterson    Theo Brunner   Rich Lambourne   Main Draw Wild Card
Stafford Slick   Billy Allen       Qualifier
Sean Rosenthal   Trevor Crabb   Jeff Alzina   Qualifier Wild Card
             
Staff             
Phil Noyes   USAV Video Scout        
Corinne Calabro   USAV Communications        
Giuseppe Vinci    Scout        
Tyler Widdison   Scout        
             

*Ryan Doherty will play in place of Tri Bourne for this event

UPCOMING EVENTS | Add to your schedule
Feb. 7-12 FIVB Fort Lauderdale 5-Star
Feb. 15-18 FIVB Kish Island (Men only) 3-Star
March 3-5 FIVB Shepparton 1-Star
March 17-19 FIVB Sydney (Women only) 2-Star

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FIVB Men's quarterfinals highlight Friday Fort Lauderdale Major schedule
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NBC Sports Kerri Walsh Jennings, April Ross return to action, map out next years
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Volleyball Source Ft. Lauderdale Major Day 1
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