FIVB Xiamen Four-Star
- Xiamen, China
- April 17-21, 2018
Three teams will represent the United States in the Round of 16 at the Xiamen Four Star on Saturday as No. 5 seed Sara Hughes/Summer Ross and No. 17 Kerri Walsh Jennings/Nicole Branaugh advanced through Friday’s first round. Walsh Jennings/Branaugh made quick work of countrywomen Kelley Larsen/Emily Stockman, knocking them out of the competition, while Hughes/Ross had to put in extra work to snag a 21-17, 18-21, 32-20 win over No. 4 seed Nina Betschart/Tanja Huberli of Switzerland.
The duos join No. 13 Alix Klineman/April Ross, who earned a bye into the second round via a pool play title.
Also advancing to the second round were duos from the China, the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands and Russia. Besides Claes/Hochevar, three other matches went to tiebreak with China’s Fan Wang/Xinyi Xia besting sixth-seeded Brazilians Taiana Lima/Carol Horta after falling 21-18 in the opening stanza. Czech pair Kristyna Kolocova/Michala Kvapilova and Germans Kim Behrens/Sandra Ittlinger also survived three-set affairs.
Ten of the Top 15 women’s seeds will be playing in the Round of 16. No. 22 Claes/Hochevar are the highest seed remaining.
On the men’s side, just No. 16 Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb remain for the Americans, as the pair won in straight sets over Dries Koekelkoren/Tom van Walle (Belgium) to move on in first round action.
The Brazilians will have three teams in action in the Round of 16 as No. 4 Vitor Felipe/Guto Carvalhaes won their pool on Thursday and No. 10 Alison Cerutti/Bruno Schmidt and No. 17 Alvaro Filho/Saymon Barbosa Santos joined them with Round 1 victories. Alvaro/Saymon overcame a 21-19 first set loss with a 28-26 extra-point victory in Set 2 before closing out the comeback effort.
Vitor Felipe/Guto will take on Alison/Bruno in the Round of 16.
No. 29 Czech duo Ondrej Perusic/David Schweiner also made it through a three-set affair to advance, besting No. 15 Grant O’Gorman/Ben Saxton (Canada).
Interestingly, at No. 29, Perusic/Schweiner are not the highest seed remaining in the competition. That honor belongs to qualifiers Adrian Heidrich/Mirco Gerson of Switzerland, who check in at No. 30. Eleven of the Top 15 teams will be playing in the Round of 16.
Main Draw Round 2 action is set to begin at 8 p.m. ET Friday.
Women’s Round 1
Kerri Walsh Jennings/Nicole Branagh (USA) def. Kelley Larsen/Emily Stockman (USA) 21-15, 21-17
Kelly Claes/Brittany Hochevar (USA) def. Nina Betschart/Tanja Huberli (Switzerland) 21-17, 18-21, 32-30
Kim Behrens/Sandra Ittlinger (Germany) def. Karla Borger/Margareta Kozuch (Germany) 21-18, 19-21, 15-13
Taru Lahti-Liukkonen/Annina Parkkinen (Finland) def. Victoria Bieneck/Isabel Schneider (Germany) 21-18, 21-11
Kristyna Kolocova/Michala Kvapilova (Czech Republic) def. Kinga Kolosinska/Kararzyna Kociolek (Poland) 21-18, 17-21, 15-12
Joy Stubbe/Marleen Ramong van Iersel (Netherlands) def. Riikka Lehtonen/Niina Ahtiainen (Finland) 22-20, 23-21
Nadezda Makroguzova/Svetlana Kholomina (Russia) def. Azusa Futami/Akiko Hasegawa (Japan) 21-13, 21-16
Fan Wang/Xinyi Xia (China) def. Taiana Lima/Carol Horta (Brazil) 18-21, 21-18, 15-13
Men’s Round 1
Taylor Crabb/Jacob Gibb (USA) def. Dries Koekelkoren/Tom van Walle (Belgium) 21-18, 21-12
Ondrej Perusic/David Schweiner (Czech Republic) def. Grant O’Gorman/Ben Saxton (Canada) 21-18, 14-21, 15-13
Michal Bryl/Grzegorz Fijalek (Poland) def. Christiaan Varenhorst/Jasper Bouter (Netherlands) 21-17, 21-18
Sam Pedlow/Sam Schachter (Canada) def. Mariusz Prudel/Jakub Szalankiewicz (Poland) 21-16, 24-22
Alexander Horst/Clemens Doppler (Austria) def. Ryan Doherty/William Allen (USA) 21-16, 21-16
Anders Berntsen Mol/Christian Sandlie Sorum (Norway) def. Cherif Younousse/Ahmed Tijan (Qatar) 21-14, 21-10
Alison Cerutti/Bruno Schmidt (Brazil) def. Theo Brunner/John Hyden (USA) 23-21, 21-17
Alvaro Filho/Saymon Barbosa (Brazil) def. Martins Plavins/Edgars Tocs (Latvia) 19-21, 28-26, 15-9