Beach Update: Moscow Bronze for Kerri/Brooke

By B.J. Hoeptner Evans (bj.evans@usav.org) | Aug. 20, 2019, 7:24 p.m. (ET)

Brooke Sweat and Kerri Walsh Jennings

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Aug. 20, 2019) Brooke Sweat/Kerri Walsh Jennings (left to right in photo) are in a third-place tie in the FIVB provisional Olympic rankings after finishing third on Sunday at the FIVB World Tour four-star event in Moscow.

In the third-place match, Sweat/Walsh Jennings, seeded 10th, defeated 14th-seeded Germans Karla Borger/Julia Sude, 24-26, 21-18, 15-10.

“It was an important victory for us,” Walsh Jennings said. “We’ve played Karla and Julia three times this year and we’ve been successful all three now. We knew they were going to change something and come out aggressively, because we all want to go to Tokyo. For us it was important to finish third so we can pull away from the other Americans and we feel proud to have beat such a good team.”

This is the third bronze and fifth World Tour medal for Sweat/Walsh Jennings since they teamed up last October. Kerri Walsh received two individual awards in Moscow; for best blocker and for fair play.

Kelly Claes/Sarah Sponcil, seeded sixth, finished tied for fifth in Moscow after losing to Switzerland’s Anouk Vergé-Dépré/Joana Heidrich in the third round, 22-20, 21-16. Claes/Sponcil are the third-place U.S. team in the women’s Olympic rankings and are in fourth overall.

Both Sweat/Walsh Jennings and Claes/Sponcil now have their required 12 FIVB events for Olympic qualification. Alix Klineman/April Ross, who are in first place among U.S. teams and tied for second overall, still need one more event for 12. That will come at the FIVB World Tour Finals, which is a five-star event on Sept. 4-8 in Rome.

On the men’s side, Jake Gibb/Taylor Crabb had the top U.S. finish in Moscow with a tie for ninth. The U.S. pair, seeded 11th, upset Germany’s sixth-ranked Julius Thole/Clemens Wickler in pool play, 17-21, 21-18, 15-13. In the second round, they lost a battle to Italy’s fifth-seeded Paolo Nicolai/Daniele Lupo, 19-21, 21-19, 16-14.

U.S. RESULTS AT MOSCOW FOUR-STAR

WOMEN
1 Anouk Vergé-Dépré/Joana Heidrich SUI
2 Taiana Lima/Talita Da Rocha Atunes BRA
3 Brooke Sweat/Kerri Walsh Jennings USA
5T Kelly Claes/Sarah Sponcil
17T Kelley Larsen/Emily Stockman

MEN
1 Alexsandrs Samoilovs/Janis Smedins, LAT
2 Alison Ceruti/Alvaro Marais Filho BRA
3 Julius Thole/Clemens Wickler GER
9T Jake Gibb/Taylor Crabb
25T Stafford Slick/Billy Allen

JURMALA THREE-STAR

Three U.S. men’s teams are in Jurmala, Latvia this week for a World Tour three-star.

Stafford Slick/Billy Allen are seeded third in the main draw, which begins Aug. 23. Casey Patterson/Chase Budinger are seeded seventh. Miles Evans/Bill Kolinske are seeded 13th.

AVP MANHATTAN BEACH

A three-time Olympian and two-time medalist on the indoor side, Reid Priddy got his first beach volleyball tournament victory in a big way on Aug. 18 when he and Trevor Crabb won the AVP Manhattan Beach Open.

Crabb is currently without regular partner Tri Bourne who broke his hand during the FIVB five-star in Vienna.

In the final, Crabb/Priddy defeated Chase Budinger/Casey Patterson, 21-15, 21-19.

The women’s final was another rematch between the United States’ Alix Klineman/April Ross and Canada’s Sarah Pavan/Melissa Humana-Paredes. This time, Pavan/Humana-Paredes won, 28-26, 16-21, 16-14.

This week, Klineman/Ross and Pavan/Humana-Paredes are both playing in the Aurora Games in Albany, N.Y. Also playing are Nina Betschart/Tanja Huberli of Switzerland and Barbora Hermannova/Marketa Slukova of Czech Republic.

Tickets are available at https://auroragamesfestival.com/tickets.

U.S. TEAMS FOR FIVB WORLD TOUR FINALS
Sept. 3-8 in Rome

WOMEN
Main Draw
2 Alix Klineman/April Ross
9 Kelly Claes/Sarah Sponcil
10 Kelley Larsen/Emily Stockman
Country Quota
Betsi Flint/Emily Day
Sara Hughes/Lauren Fendrick
Brooke Sweat/Kerri Walsh Jennings

MEN
Main Draw
7 Nick Lucena/Phil Dalhausser
14 Trevor Crabb/Tri Bourne
17 Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb
Country Quota
Billy Allen/Stafford Slick
Casey Patterson/Chase Budinger
Reid Priddy/Theo Brunner