FIVB Huntington Beach Open
- May 2-6, 2018
- Huntington Beach Pier; Huntington Beach, California
One hundred forty eight men’s and women’s teams from 23 countries are set to desend on Surf City for the first FIVB/AVP hybrid event, the Huntington Beach Open.
The four-star world tour stop makes Huntington Beach the 13th site in the United States to host an FIVB event and marks the first FIVB event in southern california since Long Beach in 2016.
Action begins at 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday with the qualifying rounds. Qualifiers continue at 1 p.m. ET on Wednesday, with main draw play kicking off Thursday at 11:30 a.m. ET and continuing through the final rounds on Sunday.
This unique hybrid event, just the fourth joint effort between the AVP and FIVB, is the result of the combined efforts of USA Volleyball and the AVP. The Huntington Beach Open is a four-star FIVB international event that will be hosted by the AVP.
“Bringing the U.S. pro volleyball tour together with the sport’s Olympic qualification organization provides new opportunites for the sport and its athletes,” the AVP stated in a press release. “USA Volleyball’s support will bring many more events like this, providing our USA athletes an opportunity to compete and hone their skills on the international stage, ultimately making a stronger pipeline of USA beach volleyball athletes for the Olympic Games.”
Unlike most FIVB events, the format of the main draw will be double-elimination instead of the traditional pool play format. The main draw will feature 48 teams per gender in the main draw.
Qualifiers are open to all American and international teams that do not have status or ranking or that fall outside of the top 32 qualifiers that advance directly into Round 2. Sixteen teams will move on from Round 1 and face the top 32 qualifiers in Round 2 with eight advancing to the main draw to round out the 48 team field.
Entries were decided by FIVB points systems.
- 23 entries for international teams on the FIVB circuit, determined by FIVB entry points
- 15 entries for domestic teams in which both players have United States as their Federation of Origin, determined by FIVB entry points
- 8 entries from the qualifiers on Tuesday and Wednesday
- 2 entries from the wild card application, one from the AVP/USA Volleyball side and one selected by the FIVB
Qualifiers include 25 American men’s pairs and four Brazilians, including Vitor Felipe/Guto Carvalhaes and Alvaro Filho/Saymon Barbosa Santos.
The men’s main draw features 16 American duos, including top seeded Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena as well as No. 13 John Hyden/Theo Brunner, No. 16 Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb and No. 21 Billy Allen/Ryan Doherty.
Xiamen Four-Star champions Oleg Stoyanovskiy/Igor Velichko (No. 10 seed from Russia), runner-up Viacheslav Krasilnikov/Nikita Liamin (No. 9 seed from Russia) and bronze medalists Alison Cerutti/Bruno Schmidt of Brazil (No. 11) also are among the field.
On the women’s side, 21 of the 25 teams in qualifying are American duos. In the main draw, top seeded Canadians Sarah Pavan/Melissa Humana-Paredes look to earn their third straight gold, after winning the Commonwealth Games and the Xiamen Four Star. Xiamen runner-up Brittany Hochevar/Kelly Claes are the No. 21 seed, while fourth-place finishers Agatha Bednarczuk/Duda Santos Lisboa of Brazil are No. 10 overall.
Sixteen American pairs are in the main draw, led by No. 7 seed Brooke Sweat/Lauren Fendrick, No. 8 Summer Ross/Sara Hughes and No. 14 Alix Klineman/April Ross. Absent from the field are Kerri Walsh Jennings/Nicole Branaugh, which is not surprising given Walsh Jennings’ public falling out with the AVP over contract issues a year ago.
The finals of the Huntington Beach Open will air live on NBCSN from 7-8:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, May 6.