USA’s Dalhausser & Rosenthal net third 2014 World Tour gold
Long Beach, USA, July 27, 2014 - On the sixth-straight day of competition where blue skies and near-perfect weather conditions prevailed, Phil Dalhausser and Sean Rosenthal avenged a gold medal setback a week earlier to Grzegorz Fijalek and Mariusz Prudel as the Americans captured their third gold medal on the 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour by outlasting the Polish pair here Sunday to net the men’s gold medal at the US$1-million ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball.
With both domestic and international television coverage of the 10th men’s stop on the 2014 FIVB World Tour calendar, the top-seeded Dalhausser and Rosenthal posted a 2-1 (22-24, 21-17 and 15-9) win over second-seeded Fijalek and Prudel in a 56-minute finale where more than 50,000 fans watched the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball this week on Alamitos Beach.
A week earlier in The Netherlands, Fijalek and Prudel outlasted the Americans 2-1 (21-18, 13-21 and 15-13) in the 59-minute finale in The Netherlands’ finale to win Poland’s first-ever men’s or women’s gold medal on the FIVB World Tour. The win Sunday also evened the series between the two teams at 2-2 as the Poles had won the previous two matches with Dalhausser and Rosenthal, including a semi-final win last month at the Russian Grand Slam in Moscow.
When asked about avenging last week’s defeat to the Poles, Rosenthal said it might be “the home crowd, maybe Geeter (Chris McGee) back here announcing, maybe the fact that we played five three-set matches this week. Maybe it put us to the test early and we were getting tested here coming into the finals. I felt pretty good in the first set against the Poles, I just gave up a few points. The second set we got a few points going and in the third set we sided out at 5-5 and then we got them in a little bit of trouble which made Phil’s block that much bigger and we never let go after that.”
Competing in their 16th FIVB World Tour event together, Dalhausser and Rosenthal have now collected eight medals with the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball title being their sixth international title in their partnership. One of the American’s gold medals was achieved last season on Alamitos Beach where Dalhausser and Rosenthal defeated Spain’s Adrian Gavira and Pablo Herrera in two sets. With a 42-7 match mark this season with 27 wins in their last 28 matches, Dalhausser and Rosenthal have a 78-15 record together as the Americans are now 6-1 in FIVB title matches.
With the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball being the 11th FIVB-sanctioned men’s event in the United States, including the Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games, 1997 FIVB World Championships in Los Angeles and the 1998 Goodwill Games in New York, American pairs have now won four gold medals on USA sand along with 11 total medals. Brazilian (five titles and 11 total medals) and Norwegian (2) pairs have also topped the American podiums.
Prior to Sunday’s Alamitos Beach men’s finale, the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball also featured the other men’s and women’s podium placement matches. Theo Brunner and Todd Rogers posted their best-ever finish together on the FIVB World Tour as the 25th-seeded Americans posted a 2-1 (21-17, 18-21 and 15-12) win in 56 minutes over 16th-seeded Alexander Walkenhorst and Stefan Windscheif of Germany. While the Germans also posted their best FIVB finish together, Brunner and Rogers had to win a qualifying match Tuesday to earn a spot in the ACIS “money” rounds.
In the 90th FIVB World Tour women’s gold medal match between Brazil and the United States, top-seeded Americans April Ross and Kerri Walsh Jennings won No. 50 for their country by outlasting fifth-seeded South Americans Agatha Bednarczuk and Barbara Seixas 2-0 (21-17 and 21-17) in 37 minutes. In the third-place match, 14th-seeded Natalia Dubovcova and Dominika Nestarcova of the Slovak Republic posted a 2-1 (21-19, 12-21 and 15-13) in 49 minutes over fourth-seeded Liliana Fernandez and Elsa Baquerizo of Spain.
FIVB PURSE, TOURNEY TOTALS - The ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball, was the 307th FIVB men’s tournament since its first event in 1987 and the 271st FIVB women’s tournament since FIVB began women’s competitions in 1992. The Gold medal winning teams in each gender in Long Beach split $70,000, the silver finishers shared $52,000, bronze placers divided $40,000 and the fourth-place finishers split $30,000 of the $1-million total purse for men and women.
NEXT - This coming week, the FIVB World Tour returns to Europe for stops in Austria (Klagenfurt, July 29-August 3) and Poland (Stare Jablonki, August 19-24).
ASICS WSOBV - The ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball was a SoCal beach festival that included 4-person and 6-person recreational events, a youth tournament and nightly music concerts. The event also included live or same-day telecasts split between NBC Sports Network, Universal Network and NBC TV Network.
COMPETITORS - With 79 men’s teams from 29 countries and 60 women’s teams from 26 countries entered by their respective national federations for the 2014 ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball, a total of 46 men’s and 45 women’s tandems (182 athletes from 31 countries) actually competed in the FIVB World Tour event.