Tuesday, 23 Jul 2024

Key Olympic Qualifier Begins in Russia

In the countdown to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, the U.S. Beach National Team is gearing up for a crucial tournament that will determine the duos representing the United States. Two 4-star tournaments on the FIVB’s Beach World Tour will contribute points towards Olympic qualification, and the first competition is set to commence in Sochi, Russia on May 26, 2021.

Women’s Competition

For the women’s side, six pairs will be competing in Sochi. Among them are some notable duos like Alix Klineman/April Ross, Kelley Kolinske/Emily Stockman, and Kelly Claes/Sarah Sponcil. These teams will be joined by Brooke Sweat/Kerri Walsh Jennings, Aurora Davis/Sarah Schermerhorn, and Corrine Quiggle/Allie Wheeler, who recently clinched a gold medal at a 1-star event in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Men’s Competition

On the men’s side, Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb, Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena, and Tri Bourne/Trevor Crabb have advanced directly to the main draw. Chaim Schalk/Theo Brunner and Travis Mewhirter/Adam Roberts will face off in the country quota to secure a spot in Sochi’s qualifier.

Olympic Ranking Point Scenarios

With only one more opportunity to optimize their Olympic Ranking points in Ostrava, Czech Republic, this tournament holds significant importance for several U.S. Beach National Team pairs. Alix Klineman and April Ross have mathematically secured their Olympic berth as the highest-ranked American duo. However, other teams like Sweat/Walsh Jennings, Claes/Sponcil, and Kolinske/Stockman are striving to improve their ranking and secure a spot in Tokyo.

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Here are the scenarios each duo needs to earn a coveted Olympic berth:

Klineman/Ross – 1st overall; 9,400 points

  • Have already secured an Olympic berth.
  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a third-place finish or higher.

Sweat/Walsh Jennings – 6th; 6,960 points

  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a fourth-place finish or higher.
  • Can clinch an Olympic berth with a win AND a Claes/Sponcil fourth-place finish or worse OR a second-place finish or better AND a Claes/Sponcil fifth-place finish or worse.

Claes/Sponcil – 9th; 6,800 points

  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a fourth-place finish or higher.
  • Need one third-place finish OR two fourth-place finishes to tie Sweat/Walsh Jennings (provided Sweat/Walsh Jennings do not add more points).

Kolinske/Stockman – 14th; 6,360 points

  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a fourth-place finish or higher.
  • Need two second-place finishes or higher OR one third and one first-place finish to surpass Sweat/Walsh Jennings (provided Sweat/Walsh Jennings do not add more points).

Ta. Crabb/Gibb – T-9th overall; 7,040 points

  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a fifth-place finish or higher.
  • Can clinch an Olympic berth with a Bourne/Tr. Crabb ninth-place or worse OR a finish equal to or better than Bourne/Tr. Crabb.

Dalhausser/Lucena – T-9th; 7,040 points

  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a fifth-place finish or higher.
  • Can clinch an Olympic berth with a Bourne/Tr. Crabb ninth-place or worse OR a finish equal to or better than Bourne/Tr. Crabb.

Bourne/Tr. Crabb – 14th; 6,600 points

  • Can add Olympic Ranking Points with a fifth-place finish or higher.
  • Need two third-place finishes or higher OR one fifth and one first-place finish OR one second and one fourth-place finish to surpass Ta. Crabb/Gibb (provided Ta. Crabb/Gibb or Dalhausser/Lucena do not add points).
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The Contenders

Sochi will witness the top three women’s pairs competing, including the leading pair, Alix Klineman/April Ross. Other notable teams in the top 10 will also be vying for a spot in Tokyo, such as Sweat/Walsh Jennings and Claes/Sponcil. On the men’s side, nine of the top 10 teams will be present, including the number one ranked duo, Anders Mol/Christian Sorum of Norway, and Cherif Younousse/Ahmed Tijan of Qatar, who won the third Cancun event.

For more information and a complete schedule of the Sochi 4-star tournament, visit the official webpage. You can catch the live stream of each match on the FIVB’s Beach Volleyball YouTube account.


FAQs

Q: Which tournament will determine the duos representing the United States in the 2020 Olympic Games?
A: Two 4-star tournaments on the FIVB’s Beach World Tour will contribute points towards Olympic qualification.

Q: Which city will host the first competition?
A: Sochi, Russia, will host the first tournament.

Q: How many women’s pairs will compete in Sochi?
A: Six women’s pairs will compete in Sochi.

Q: Which U.S. women’s pairs have already secured a spot in the tournament’s main draw?
A: Alix Klineman/April Ross, Kelley Kolinske/Emily Stockman, and Kelly Claes/Sarah Sponcil have already secured a spot in the tournament’s main draw.

Q: Which U.S. men’s pairs have advanced directly to the main draw in Sochi?
A: Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb, Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena, and Tri Bourne/Trevor Crabb have advanced directly to the main draw.

Summary

The stakes are high as the U.S. Beach National Team gears up for the Key Olympic Qualifier in Sochi, Russia. This tournament will determine the duos representing the United States in the highly anticipated 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. Some teams have already secured their spots, while others are striving to improve their Olympic Ranking points. Sochi is a critical tournament for these teams to secure their Olympic berths. Excitement is building as the top women’s and men’s pairs battle it out on the sand in pursuit of their Olympic dreams.

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To stay updated on the latest tournament details and catch the live action, visit the official Sochi 4-star tournament webpage. Don’t miss a moment as the teams give it their all on the journey to Tokyo!