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Canadian McNamara twins pace foreign pairs at American collegiate championship

Megan (left) and Nicola McNamara complete their American collegiate career this weekend before heading to Brazil in two weeks for a FIVB World Tour event in Itapema.
Gulf Shores, Ala., USA, May 3, 2019 - Before becoming full-time participants on the FIVB World Tour, the McNamara twins from Canada had the best performance among the 14 foreign players competing here Friday in the opening rounds of the NCAA Beach Volleyball Championships for women here Friday at Gulf Shores State Park.

The second-seeded UCLA team posted wins over schools from seventh-seeded Hawai'i and third-seeded Florida State to advance to Saturday's winner's bracket semi-finals against fourth-seeded Louisiana and Megan and Nicole McNamara (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada) posted a pair of three-set victories Friday to improve their season record to 30-4 for the defending national champions.

After securing UCLA's 3-2 dual win over Hawai'i in the Lady Bruins first match Friday with a 2-1 (20-22, 21-15, 20-18) over Emily Maglio (Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada)/Amy Ozee, Megan McNamara said "we're just taking it one game at a time. Each one of our matches here could be the championship game and we're taking it as if it was our final game. I think we're just trying to come out aggressive and take it one game at a time.”

Following this week's event that concludes Sunday, the McNamaras return to FIVB World Tour play in Brazil for the Itapema Open May 15-19 as the Canadian twins are ticketed for participation at the FIVB World championships June 28 through July 7 in Hamburg, German.  The McNamara are the reigning World University Games championships and have two World Tour fourth-places to their credit along with three medals FIVB youth events.

Friday's biggest "surprise" was produced by eighth-seeded Stetson as the Lady Hatters from Florida upset top-seeded Southern California 3-1.  Six of the 10 Stetson competitors are foreign players from Australia, Brazil, Canada and Norway.  Sammee Thomas/Darby Dunn (South Surrey, British Columbia, Canada) and Ana Costa (Sergipe, Brazil) each won two matches Friday for Stetson with different partners.

Brazilian Ana Costa with American partner Rachel Noble during Friday's NCAA action for Stetson.

Due to pending weather, Saturday’s schedule has been altered with an earlier start for the double-elimination event (American Central Daylight Savings Time)

9 a.m. - Southern California vs. Florida State
10 a.m. - Hawai’i vs. Stetson
11 a.m. - UCLA vs. Louisiana State 
12 p.m. - Southern California/Florida State winner vs. Hawai’i/Stetson winner

Here are the results with the hometown for the foreign players from Australia (one competitor), Brazil (one), Canada (nine), Latvia (one) and Norway (two) list.

Stetson 3 Southern California 1
1. Abril Bustamante/Tina Graudina (Jurmala, Latvia), USC def. Sunniva Helland-Hansen Øystese, Norway)/Carly Perales, Stetson, 21-17, 21-12
2. Sammee Thomas/Darby Dunn (South Surrey, British Columbia, Canada), Stetson def. Sammy Slater/Terese Cannon, USC, 21-19, 21-18
3. Ana Costa (Sergipe, Brazil)/Rachel Noble, Stetson def. Alexandra Poletto (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)/Haley Hallgren, USC, 21-19, 21-17
4. Joy Dennis/Maja Kaiser, USC vs. Julie Varga (Fredrikstad, Norway)/Samantha Harris, Stetson, 19-21, 17-17, unfinished
5. Quinci Birker (Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada)/Rebecca Ingram (Maffra, Victoria, Australia) def. Cammie Dorn/Mollie Ebertin, USC 21-16, 21-17

Australian Rebecca Ingram (right) of Stetson hits against Mollie Eberlin of Southern California in the Hatters' upset of the top-seeded Women of Troy Friday.

Louisiana State 3, Pepperdine 0
1. Claire Coppola/Kristen Nuss, LSU def. Brook Bauer/Heidi Dyer, Pepperdine 21-19, 21-18
2. Kelli Agnew/Olivia Powers, LSU vs. Gigi Hernandez/Deahna Kraft, Pepperdine, 21-14, 15-21, 9-9, unfinished
3. Ashlyn Rasnick-Pope/Toni Rodriguez, LSU vs. Skylar Caputo/Alexis Filoppone, Pepperdine, 21-17, 12-21, unfinished
4. Maddie Ligon/Olivia Beyer, LSU def. Maddie Dilfer/Nikki Lyons, Pepperdine, 27-25, 21-19
5. Allison Coens/Hunter Domanski, LSU def. Katie Gavin/Simone Priebe, Pepperdine, 21-18, 21-17

UCLA 3, Hawai'i 2
1. Megan McNamara/Nicole McNamara (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), UCLA def. Emily Maglio (Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada)/Amy Ozee, Hawai'i, 20-22, 21-15, 20-18
2. Ari Homayun/Julia Scoles, Hawai’i def. Lily Justine/Sarah Sponcil, UCLA, 22-20, 21-19
3. Zana Muno/Abby Van Winkle, UCLA def. Morgan Martin/Pani Napoleon, Hawai'i, 21-18, 19-21, 15-10
4. Hi'ilawe Huddleston/Kylin Loker, Hawai'i def. Lea Monkhouse (Mississauga, Ontario, Canada)/Savy Simo, UCLA, 21-16, 12-21, 15-9
5. Izzy Carey/Lindsey Sparks, UCLA def. Norene Iosia/Sofia Russo, Hawai'i, 21-16, 21-9

Florida State 3, Cal Poly 0
1. Alaina Chacon/Madison Fitzpatrick, Florida State def. Tiadora Miric (Thornhill, Ontario, Canada)/Crissy Jones, Cal Poly, 21-12, 21-14
2. Sara Putt/Payton Rund, Florida State vs. Emily Sonny/Macy Gordon, Cal Poly, 21-14, 14-16, unfinished
3. Brooke Kuhlman/Avery Poppinga, Florida State vs. Jayelin Lombard/Kat Wright, Cal Poly, 21-15, 19-16, unfinished
4. Payton Caffrey/Molly McBain (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), Florida State def. Delaney Peranich/Sam Manley, Cal Poly, 21-14, 21-12
5. Kate Privett/Macy Jerger, Florida State def. Brayden Gruenewald/Vanessa Roscoe, Cal Poly, 21-17, 21-14

USC 3, Pepperdine 0 (Pepperdine eliminated)
1. Bustamante/Graudina (Jurmala, Latvia), USC vs. Bauer/Dyer, Pepperdine, 21-18, 15-15, unfinished
2. Slater/Cannon, USC vs. Hernandez/Kraft, Pepperdine, 21-13, 14-176, unfinished
3. Poletto (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)/Hallgren, USC def. Caputo/Filoppone, Pepperdine, 21-16, 21-15
4. Dennis/Kaiser, USC def. Dilfer/Lyons, Pepperdine, 21-16, 21-15
5. Dorn/Ebertin, USC def. Gavin/Priebe, Pepperdine, 21-14, 21-14

Hawai'i 3, Cal Poly 0 (Cal Poly eliminated)
1. Maglio (Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada)/Ozee, Hawai'i vs. Miric (Thornhill, Ontario, Canada)/Jones, Cal Poly, 21-18, 17-21, 1-3, unfinished
2. Homayun/Scoles, Hawai'i def. Sonny/Gordon, Cal Poly, 21-19, 21-17
3. Martin/Napoleon, Hawai'i def. Lombard/Wright, Cal Poly, 21-15, 21-16
4. Huddleston/Loker, Hawai'i def. Peranich/Manley, Cal Poly, 21-17, 21-18
5. Iosia/Russo, Hawai'i vs. Gruenewald/Roscoe, Cal Poly, 18-21, 21-15, 8-5, unfinished

LSU 3, Stetson 2
1. Coppola/Nuss, LSU def. Helland-Hansen Øystese, Norway)/Perales, Stetson, 21-14, 21-16
2. Thomas/Dunn (South Surrey, British Columbia, Canada), Stetson def. Agnew/Powers, LSU, 21-16, 21-18
3. Costa (Sergipe, Brazil)/Noble, Stetson def. Rasnick-Pope/Rodriguez, LSU, 21-17, 20-22, 17-15
4. igon/Beyer, LSU def. Varga (Fredrikstad, Norway)/Harris, Stetson, 21-8, 21-19
5. Coens/Domanski, LSU def. Birker (Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada)/Ingram (Maffra, Victoria, Australia), 22-20, 1UC8-21, 15-13

UCLA 3, Florida State 0
1. McNamaras (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), UCLA def. Chacon/Fitzpatrick, Florida State, 19-21, 21-19, 15-7
2. Justine/Sponcil, UCLA vs. Putt/Rund, Florida State, 23-25, 21-16, unfinished
3. Muno/Van Winkle, UCLA vs. Kuhlman/Poppinga, Florida State, 23-21, 18-21, 7-7 unfinished
4. Monkhouse (Mississauga, Ontario, Canada)/Simo, UCLA def. Caffrey/McBain (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), Florida State, 13-21, 21-19, 15-12
5. Carey/Sparks, UCLA vs. Privett/Jerger, Florida State, 21-13, 18-21, 15-13

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