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2018-03-02 02:19:00 CEST

US and Brazil grab last Round of 16 spots

Sweat/Ross and Agatha/Duda get the final berths after an intense night section

Summer Ross dominated the net against the Brazilians (Photocredit: FIVB)Summer Ross dominated the net against the Brazilians (Photocredit: FIVB)

Americans Summer Ross and Brooke Sweat and Brazilians Agatha Bednarczuk and Duda Lisboa won the final spots for the Round of 16 in the women’s tournament of the 2018 Fort Lauderdale Major after a pair of night matches this Thursday at the Red Bull Beach Arena.

The best 16 teams of the tournament will compete in the second-to-last day of the women’s tournament, which will end with the four semifinalists decided. The semifinals and medal matches are scheduled for Saturday. Click here to see the full schedule.

Sweat and Ross, who played their first tournament together in Fort Lauderdale last year, entered the day with one win and one loss, but they pulled out a strong performance to prevail over Brazil’s Carol Solberg and Maria Antonelli in three sets (21-16, 15-21, 15-8). They will now play fellow Americans Sara Hughes and Kelly Claes in the Round of 16.

“It was a really fun match and the crowd was really into it,” Sweat said. “We were really feeding off of it and Brazilians always feed off of it, so it made the match a little more competitive, there was an amazing energy out there. There’s always this extra passion when it’s USA versus Brazil and that was an exciting win.”

Agatha and Duda, the silver medalists of last year’s edition, completed their comeback after a surprising first-match setback with a convincing two-set (21-12, 21-14) win against Germany’s Julia Sude and Chantal Laboureur in a rematch of last year’s #FTLMajor’s semifinal. Earlier, they had defeated Switzerland’s Anouk Vergé-Dépré.

The last results boosted the team’s confidence for the remainder of the tournament. Their next opponents will be Americans Lauren Fendrick and Nicole Branagh, who won both of their matches in Fort Lauderdale so far.

“I think we were a little too slow in the first match,” Duda told us. “After that defeat, we knew that we would need to change our attitude if we wanted to advance in the tournament and we did it. We studied their game a lot because it was a crucial match for us and we helped each other a lot too, which was great.”

Duda credited the team's attitude change as a key factor for their reaction in the #FTLMajorDuda credited the team's attitude change as a key factor for their reaction in the #FTLMajor

Round of 16

Pavan/Humana-Paredes (CAN) v Wang/Xia (CHN)

Claes/Hughes (USA) v Sweat/Ross (USA)

Barbara/Fernanda (BRA) v Bansley/Wilkerson (CAN)

Makroguzova/Kholomina (RUS) v Slukova/Bonnerova (CZE)

Artacho/Clancy (AUS) v Taiana/Carol Horta (BRA)

Pischke/Broder (CAN) v Borger/Kozuch (GER)

Behrens/Ittlinger (GER) v Bienek/Schneider (GER)

Agatha/Duda (BRA) v Fendrick/Branagh (USA)

Beach Volleyball Major Series on Twitter

If you can't be here at #FTLMajor - you can watch all games live at our #BeachStream 📺🏐🇺🇸 #hellosunny #GivesYouWings #wawa

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