Wednesday, 29 May 2024

Florida Beach Volleyball Teams Thrive in Fort Lauderdale

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (March 2, 2018) – The sunny shores of Florida have been a welcoming home for several U.S. beach volleyball teams competing in the Fort Lauderdale Major, an FIVB five-star tournament.

Among the remaining teams, three players hail from Florida, making the state proud. Brooke Sweat and her partner Summer Ross, who both have Florida roots, advanced to the quarterfinals after defeating Sara Hughes and Kelly Claes. Despite not being from Florida, Ross expressed her enjoyment of playing in the state’s heat and humidity.

“We practice with them a lot in California so I wasn’t surprised,” Sweat said about their win. “It was just a matter of staying steady and not getting discouraged on those long rallies.”

Sweat and Ross, seeded 13th, will face off against Brazil’s No. 9 Barbara Seixas de Freitas and Fernanda Alves in the semifinals. Meanwhile, Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena, who not only grew up in Florida but also reside there full time, secured a spot in the quarterfinals by defeating Brazil’s Gustavo “Guto” Carvalhaes and Vitor Felipe.

Dalhausser admitted to having his vision briefly obscured by a ball that hit the side of his head but was grateful that Lucena was able to recover the ball and secure the point. They will compete against Netherlands’ Robert Meeuwsen and Alexander Brouwer in the quarterfinals.

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Another Florida-based team, John Hyden and Theo Brunner, advanced to the quarterfinals after a thrilling three-set match against their U.S. teammates Taylor Crabb and Jake Gibb. Hyden hopes to improve their performance in the first set, as their last three matches have been challenging.

Hyden and Brunner will take on Brazil’s Pedro Solberg and George Wanderley in the quarterfinals. Unfortunately, Nicole Branagh and Lauren Fendrick’s run in Fort Lauderdale came to an end with a loss to Agatha Bednarczuk and Eduarda Santos Lisboa of Brazil.

With the remaining U.S. beach volleyball teams showing their skill, Florida continues to be a successful training ground for these athletes. The intense competition, combined with the state’s favorable climate, offers the perfect environment for these beach volleyball players to excel.


Q: Which U.S. beach volleyball teams are still competing in the Fort Lauderdale Major?
A: Three U.S. beach volleyball teams are still in the running for the championship: Brooke Sweat and Summer Ross, Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena, and John Hyden and Theo Brunner.

Q: How has Florida played a role for some of these beach volleyball players?
A: Florida has been a nurturing environment for several players, with Brooke Sweat, Summer Ross, Phil Dalhausser, and Nick Lucena all having roots in the state. The warm climate and humidity have provided ideal conditions for these athletes to thrive.

Q: What challenges have Hyden and Brunner faced in their recent matches?
A: John Hyden and Theo Brunner have encountered difficulties in the first set of their previous matches. They aim to overcome this challenge and start stronger in their upcoming games.

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Florida has proven to be a fruitful home for U.S. beach volleyball teams competing in the Fort Lauderdale Major. With players like Brooke Sweat, Summer Ross, Phil Dalhausser, and Nick Lucena showcasing their skills on the sand, it’s clear that Florida’s climate and training opportunities are beneficial. As the remaining teams prepare for the next stage of the tournament, the intense competition promises exciting matches and fierce determination. Florida’s contribution to the world of beach volleyball remains impressive, and these athletes continue to make their mark on the sport. To stay updated on the tournament’s progress, visit