BEACH VOLLEYBALL: Summer Ross and Sara Hughes win Moscow 4-star

This has been an up-and-down year for the U.S. women in the FIVB World Beach Volleyball Tour.

American pairs won medals in the first three top-line tournaments – the 4-star and Majors – of the year, then nothing for four straight tournament, and then a bronze in Portugal in early July for the new duo of Summer Ross and Sara Hughes.

Maybe this partnership is turning into something, as Ross and Hughes won their first World Tour tournament together in Moscow (RUS) with a 2-1 win over Brazil’s experienced Agatha Bednarczuk and Duda Lisboa.

“That was so amazing,” Hughes said afterwards. “My first World Tour final and being in the final meant everything. I am so glad I had this girl by my side. Brazil played great, but we competed hard to come out with the win.”

“We knew that the first point [in the third set] meant everything,” Ross said. “We just had to get every point we could get and somehow we got through.”

It’s an impressive win heading into the World Tour Final this week and shot Ross and Hughes into ninth place in the FIVB World Rankings. More coming this week?

In the men’s final, Latvia’s Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins won their second World Tour gold of 2018 by sweeping aside Alison Cerutti and Andre Loyola Stein of Brazil. It was also their second win in Moscow, having won back in their first season together in 2013, and their 10th together as a team.

“They are such a good team with Olympic and World Championships gold medals between them,” Samoilovs said. “They started really well and then they lost their rhythm and we just focused on the next point and that meant everything went well for us.” Summaries:

FIVB World Tour 4-star
Moscow (RUS) ~ 8-12 August 2018
(Full results here)

Men: 1. Allison Cerutti/Andre Stein (BRA); 2. Janis Smedins/Aleksandrs Samoilovs (LAT); 3. Igor Velichko/Oleg Stoyanovskiy (RUS); 4. Vitor Felipe/Evandro Oliveira (BRA). Semis: Smedins/Samoilovs d/ Velichko/Stoyanovskiy, 2-1; Allison/Andre d. Vitor Felipe/Evandro, 2-1. Third: Velichko/Stoyanovskiy d. Vitor Felipe/ Evandro, 2-0. Final: Alison/Andre d. Smedins/Samoilovs, 2-0 (21-18, 21-13).

Women: 1. Summer Ross/Sara Hughes (USA); 2. Agatha Bednarczuk/Duda Lisboa (BRA); 3. Nina Betschart/Tanja Huberli (SUI); 4. Chantal Laboureur/Julia Sude (GER). Semis: Agatha/Duda d. Betschart/Huberli, 2-0; Summer/Hughes d. Laboureur/Sude, 2-0. Third: Betschart/Huberli d. Laboureur/Sude, 2-0; Final: Summer/Hughes d. Agatha/Duda, 2-1 (21-19, 19-21, 15-12).