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PRESS RELEASE

Brazil earns seven spots in men’s Round of 16 at FIVB Fortaleza Open

 
USA's Jake Gibb, left, crushes the Mikasa past Norway's Oivinkd Hodvik as Gibb and teammate Casey Patterson defeated Norway for the fifth-seeded duo to advance 3-0 from pool play to Friday's round of 16 at the FIVB Fortaleza Open in Brazil.
Fortaleza, Brazil, April 28, 2016 — Benefitting from playing in their home country in the same stadium they completed their national tour in just the prior week, Brazil’s powerful men’s teams seized the opportunity and advanced seven of their eight teams to Saturday’s Round of 16 at the double-gender FIVB Fortaleza Open.

The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour is played its fifth of eight straight events as the qualification window draws to a close for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

The FIVB Fortaleza Open is a double-gender event with 31 main draw teams for men and 28 for women. Friday’s schedule will include the men’s second round of elimination matches along with the women’s last of three pool play matches and the women’s first two elimination rounds.

On Saturday, the quarterfinals and semifinals for both genders will be played. The medal matches for both genders will all be played on Sunday with the awarding ceremony following the last gold medal match concluding the event. The FIVB Fortaleza Open is being played at the purpose built stadium at Praia do Futuro in Fortaleza, site of last week’s season finale of the Brazilian National Tour.

ROUND OF 16 MATCHUPS
Friday’s only matches in Fortaleza for the men will be the eight Round of 16 battles with the winner’s advancing to Saturday’s quarterfinals.  They are scheduled to be played at 11 a.m. and 12 noon on four courts for each group

In the first four Round of 16 matches, USA’s second-seeded Jake Gibb/Casey Patterson will meet Brazil’s 10th-seeded Gustavo Carvalhaes/Saymon Barbosa, Brazil’s fifth-seeded Vitor Felipe/Alvaro Filho will be challenged by Germany’s sixth-seeded Jonathan Erdmann/Kay Matysik, Chile’s seventh-seeded cousins Marco Grimalt/Esteban Grimalt will play against Brazil’s top-seeded Pedro Salgado/Evandro Goncalves and Norway’s 17th-seeded Morten Kvamsdal/Christian Sorum will tangle with 13th-seeded Ricardo Santos/Allison Cittadin.

In the second group of Round of 16 matches, Israel’s 20th-seeded Sean Faiga/Ariel Hilman will face off against Greece’s 18th-seeded Georgios Kotsilianos/Nikos Zoupani, Brazil’s 22nd-seeded Oscar Brandao/Andre Loyola will be met by Canada’s Grant O’Gorman/Sam Pedlow, Brazil’s 25th-seeded Luciano Ferreira/Marcio Araujo will play Mexico’s third-seeded Ontiveros Lambardo/Juan Virgen and Brazil’s 30th-seeded George Souto Wanderley/Joalisson Gomes will line up against fourth-seeded Josh Binstock/Sam Schachter.

MARCIO PLEASED
FIVB legend and hometown hero Marcio Araujo was more than pleased with his team’s near-pool play, admitting he can’t remember the last time his team went 3-0 in pool play in a FIVB World Tour event. On Thursday, Marcio, who has announced his retiredment from the FIVB World Tour after this event in Fortaleza, and his teammate Luciano stayed clean Israel’s 24th-seeded Netanel Ohana/Alon Sandervich in straight sets, 21-14, 21-12 in a quick 32 minutes.  

Commenting on the great enjoyment he is having during his swan song event, the affable Marcio said, “We played saving our energy as we were already qualified with yesterday’s results. We are planning to finish this tournament among the final four teams so saving energy was our strategy for today’s match with the Israeli team. It is a pleasure to play in my hometown, in my country, and as this will be my last FIVB World Tour event I want to do my best. I am enjoying every moment and it will be hard for me to walk away after all the fun I’ve had and all the years I have put into this sport as an international athletic. But life moves on and I am looking forward to my new position in the sports programs for the City of Fortaleza.”

POOL POWER
Winning their respective pools on Thursday were to advance to Friday’s Round of 16 were USA’s Gibb/Patterson, Brazil’s Vitor/Alvaro, Chile’s Marco Grimalt/Esteban Grimalt, Norway’s Kvamsdal/Sorum, Israel’s Sean Faiga/Hilman, Brazil’s Oscar/Andre,  Brazil’s Luciano/Marcio and Brazil’s George/Joalisson. All except Israel’s Faiga/Hillman won their respective pools with 3-0 records while Israel’s ever-improving Faiga/Hilman were 2-1 and won the head-to-head tiebreaker over Brazil’s Ricardo/Allison.

NO. 1 REBOUNDS
After a surprising loss in their first pool match on Wednesday, Brazil’s top-seeded 2016 Olympians Pedro/Evandro, won their final pool match this morning and came back to close the day with a win in the first elimination round to advance to tomorrow’s round of 16.  

Winning both of their matches in two sets today, Brazil’s Pedro/Evandro started the day by defeating Argentina’s Ian Mehamed/Nicolas Capogrosso, 21-15, 22-20 in 38 minutes. They came back in the evening to close the competition for the day by eliminating Venezuela’s Jackson Henriquez/Jesus Villafane, 21-12, 21-13 in only 28 minutes.

Following the team’s match against Venezuela, Pedro summarized the day, saying "The best thing is when you increase your game through the tournament. Earlier we did not play as good as we can, but against the Venezuelans we did a lot better. We did not play well during pool play so it was a good win for us tonight. I am sure that we are developing. Our team play works out much better when we communicate, and that is what happened tonight against Venezuela."

FIVB FORTALEZA OPEN PURSE/POINTS
The gold medal teams at the FIVB Fortaleza Open will split $11,000 and 500 points, the silver $8,000 and 450 points, the bronze $6,000 400 points and fourth place $4,500 and 450 points.

ON THE HORIZON
With placement points for the FIVB Olympic Rankings for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games continuing, the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour has resumed with events over eight straight weeks through the end of May. In all, Brazil is hosting five international events in 2016. In addition to Maceió, Rio and Vitoria, this week’s FIVB Fortaleza Open (April 26-May 1) and the Brazil events conclude with the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (Aug. 6-18).

The FIVB World Tour heads to Europe FIVB Fortaleza Open. Up first will be in Russia for the FIVB Sochi Open (May 3-8) followed by the FIVB Antalya Open in Turkey (May 11-15). The tour then visits the United States for the FIVB Cincinnati Open (May 17-22) and then returns to Russia for the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam (May 24-29).

GROWING HISTORY
The FIVB Fortaleza Open in Brazil is the 340th men’s tournament since the FIVB began play in 1987 and the 301st FIVB women’s tournament since their competition started in 1992.


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