Thursday, 23 May 2024

Beach Season Kicks Off with U.S. Teams in Playoffs

The U.S. Beach National Team recently wrapped up their first international tournament of the season, the Beach Pro Tour’s Tlaxcala Challenge in Tlaxcala, Mexico. Five U.S. pairs made it to the knockout bracket, showcasing their talent on the sand.

Impressive Performances

Leading the charge were Emily Day and April Ross, who reached the quarterfinals after winning their pool with two consecutive 2-0 victories. They secured their spot in the quarterfinals by defeating Germany’s Sarah Schulz and Chantal Laboureur. Unfortunately, they were eliminated in a hard-fought match against 2020 Olympians Katja Stam and Raisa Schoon of the Netherlands.

Strong Contenders

Four other American pairs – Corinne Quiggle and Sarah Schermerhorn, Lauren Fendrick and Emily Stockman, Sara Hughes and Kelley Kolinske, and Chaim Schalk and Theo Brunner – advanced to the round of 16. Quiggle and Schermerhorn had a challenging path, winning twice in the qualifier before the main draw started. They made an impressive start by upsetting the top-seeded pair of Terese Cannon and Sarah Sponcil and defeating Brazilians Taiana Lima and Hegeile Almeida dos Santos to claim the pool title. Unfortunately, their run came to an end in the first playoff round.

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Fendrick and Stockman, as well as Hughes and Kolinske, each finished pool play with a 1-1 record. Although they lost their respective pool title matches, they put up a fight against tough competition. In the round of 16, both pairs faced Brazilian opponents, pushing them to extra points before ultimately being defeated.

Schalk and Brunner faced a similar challenge, losing their opening pool match and having to battle through two additional matches before reaching the round of 16. They showcased their resilience with two 2-0 victories against Dutch teams but fell short against Brazilians Vitor Goncalves Felipe and Renato Andrew Lima de Carvalho in a closely contested match.

Cannon and Sponcil, who teamed up for the first time since 2018, were unable to advance beyond pool play.

Looking Ahead

As the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour continues, the next stop is an Elite 16 tournament in Rosarito, Mexico. Eight American pairs, consisting of five women’s and three men’s teams, are scheduled to compete. Stay tuned to see how they fare in the upcoming matches.

FAQs

Q: How did Emily Day and April Ross perform in the tournament?
A: Emily Day and April Ross made an impressive run, reaching the quarterfinals before being eliminated by the Netherlands’ Katja Stam and Raisa Schoon.

Q: Which American pairs advanced to the round of 16?
A: Corinne Quiggle and Sarah Schermerhorn, Lauren Fendrick and Emily Stockman, Sara Hughes and Kelley Kolinske, and Chaim Schalk and Theo Brunner all advanced to the round of 16.

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Q: Who were the top-seeded pair that Quiggle and Schermerhorn upset?
A: Quiggle and Schermerhorn pulled off an upset against the top-seeded pair of Terese Cannon and Sarah Sponcil.

Q: How many American pairs are scheduled to compete in the upcoming Elite 16 tournament?
A: Eight American pairs, consisting of five women’s teams and three men’s teams, are set to compete in the next tournament in Rosarito, Mexico.

Conclusion

The U.S. Beach National Team’s performance at the Tlaxcala Challenge showcased their skill and determination. Despite some tough losses, the American pairs demonstrated their ability to compete against top international competition. As they look ahead to the next tournament, their focus and teamwork will undoubtedly continue to drive their success in the sand. For more information about the U.S. Beach National Team and their upcoming events, visit Alpinetgheep.