The top-seeded men's and women's pro beach volleyball teams advanced to Saturday's second round of the $200,000 smart AVP Championships at Huntington Beach, the AVP Tour's 2013 season finale taking place through Sunday at the Huntington Beach Pier.
Seeking their fifth consecutive AVP tournament championship this weekend, Costa Mesa resident and two-time Olympian Jake Gibb and Huntington Beach resident Casey Patterson toppled qualifiers Andrei Belov and Jake Elliott, 21-16, 21-16, in their first-round match Friday.
Gibb and Patterson will meet Costa Mesa's Brad Keenan and John Mayer, the No. 8 seed, at 10:30 a.m. Saturday. Keenan and Mayer beat No. 9 seed Matt Olson and Matt Prosser, 21-13, 22-20.
In the women's bracket, 2012 Olympic silver medalist April Ross, a Costa Mesa resident and former Newport Harbor High standout, and three-time reigning Olympic gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings defeated qualifiers Alison Daley and Megan Wallin, 21-12, 21-15, on Friday in taking the first step in their quest to win for third time in as many tournaments since beginning their partnership.
Ross and Walsh Jennings are 16-1 since they began playing together in July. Previously, the duo won the AVP Santa Barbara Open and the FIVB Tour's Sao Paulo Grand Slam.
The only qualifier to advance to the women's second round was Sarah Day, of Corona del Mar, and Kaitlin Nielsen, who outlasted London 2012 silver medalist Jen Kessy and Laguna Beach's Rachel Scott, the No. 5 seed, 21-17, 21-23, 15-13.
Day and Nielsen will face Annett Davis and Morgan Miller, the No. 13 seed, on Stadium Court at 10:10 a.m. Saturday.
Other locals advancing to Saturday's second round on the men's side include the team of Huntington Beach's Ryan Doherty and 2008 Beijing Olympic champion Todd Rogers, which edged Kevin McColloch and Mark Williams, 21-19, 24-26, 15-12, and Huntington Beach's Pedro Brazao and partner Steve Grotowski, a 21-18, 21-15 winner over fifth-seeded Adrian Carambula and Stafford Slick.
Saturday play for the smart AVP Championships at Huntington Beach begins at 9 a.m. and concludes with Sunday's men's final, scheduled for 3 p.m., and the women's final, scheduled for 4 p.m. General admission is free, and tickets for Club AVP suites are available for purchase at the gate or at http://www.avp.com for $20 per day.
— From staff reportsCopyright © 2015, CT Now