Women's Olympic Games, Athens GREECE
From 14 August To 24 August 2004

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Greece's Karadassiou & Sfyri Gain "Sweet 16" Beach Volleyball Berth
Athens, Greece, August 18, 2004 - A victory before a sold out crowd at the Olympic Beach Volleyball Centre here Wednesday by Greece's Vasso Karadassiou and Efi Sfyri highlighted the play in the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.

With a 21-14 and 21-17 win in 47 minutes over Tian Jia and Wang Fei of China, Karadassiou and Sfyri advanced to the Round of 16 as the No. 2 team from pool behind Summer Lochowicz and Kerri Pottharst of Australia.

Lochowicz and Pottharst, who defeated the Karadassiou and Sfyri Monday, will use their first-place finish in Pool F to gain a sixth-seed in the "Sweet 16" when the single-elimination bracket starts Friday with the first of two days of opening round action.

The Aussies scored a 26-24 and 22-20 win in 50 minutes over Hilda Gaxiola and Mayra Garcia of Mexico to give Pottharst her ninth-straight win in Olympic competition as she used the first six victories to snare two Beach Volleyball medals in Atlanta (1996 bronze) and Sydney (2000 gold) with Natalie Cook.

Cook had a chance to tie Pottharst with nine-straight wins, but she and Nicole Sanderson dropped a 21-10 and 22-20 decision to Stephanie Pohl and Okka Rau of Germany, who had lost Monday to the Yanchulova

With the win, Pohl and Rau will advance as the fifth-seeded team into the elimination bracket as the Germans won the tie-breakers with the Cook and Sanderson along with the Bulgarian Yanchulova sisters (Lina and Petia) as all three teams posted 2-1 pool records.

Cook and Sanderson will be the No. 2 team from Pool E while the Yanchulovas have to wait until the completions of Pool A, B and C to see if they qualify as one of four third-place finishers.

Holly McPeak and Elaine Youngs protected their fourth-seed by rallying for a 22-24, 21-17 and 15-12 win over Nicole Schnyder and Simone Kuhn of Switzerland. Guylaine Dumont and Annie Martin snared the second spot in Pool D with 2-1 record as the Canadians posted a 21-19 and 29-27 win over Susanne Glesnes and Kathrine Maaseide of Norway.

The final matches in Pools A, B and C will be played Thursday and will feature meetings between teams with 2-0 records. Misty May and Kerri Walsh of the United States play Eva Celbova and Sona Novakova of the Czech Republic at 9 p.m. Thursday for the Pool A top spot.

Brazil's Adriana Behar and Shelda Bede will play Dalixia Fernandez Grasset and Tamara Larrea Peraza of Cuba at 3:30 p.m. Thursday for Pool B top spot. Ana Paula Connelly and Sandra Pires of Brazil are the leaders in Pool C and need a win Thursday over a ensure their No. 3-seed in the Main Draw.

Wednesday's action was the fifth of six days of women's pool play where 16 of the 24 teams in the competition will advance to the elimination bracket. The women's medal matches are scheduled for August 24.