2008 AVP Manhattan Beach Open Sept. 17th – 21st

2008 AVP Manhattan Beach Open

Sept. 19-21 Manhattan Beach Calif.,

The 2008 AVP Manhattan Beach Open kicks off Wednesday with 2 days of qualifying before the main draw teams compete on Friday. This year the top 16 teams from San Francisco will have a by in the qualifier.

This years event will have a lot of buzz on the heals of Misti May Treanor and Kerri Walsh losing in Santa Barbara after an amazing 2 year win streak.

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Sixteen teams earn Manhattan bye
Top finishers in each field rewarded for success

SAN FRANCISCO — There’s only one Manhattan Beach Open.

Unless, of course, you still have to qualify for the Manhattan Beach Open.

That’s a fate that 16 teams — eight on the men’s and women’s side — avoided by virtue of their success Saturday in the AVP Crocs Tour San Francisco. While the other 24 entries in the main draws of the record $1 million Manhattan Beach event will have to undergo a grueling qualification process, the top eight finishers in San Francisco receive a free pass next weekend.

“You don’t want to play two tournaments,” said Barbra Fontana, who along with partner Dianne DeNecochea clinched a spot by virtue of their 21-19, 21-13 win over Ashley Ivy and Heather Lowe. “They’re basically going to have to play two tournaments. They’re going to have to come through a qualifier, and then they’re going to have to play another tournament. So it’s a huge advantage to get a bye into the main draw.”

The lowest seeded team that crashed the final eight was the 11th-seeded tandem of Billy Allen and Braidy Halverson. No. 10 John Mayer and Jeff Nygaard also made the cut.

“I think they’ll qualify easily,” Jake Gibb said of the teams that didn’t make it, “but it’s just two days of volleyball you don’t want to be doing.”

The four men’s teams that failed to earn an automatic spot in Manhattan Beach:

• Ryan Mariano and Ed Ratledge (the No. 7 seeds in San Francisco)

• Dax Holdren and Will Strickland (No. 8)

• Pedro Brazao and Jose Loiola (No. 9)

• Aaron Wachtfogel and Scott Wong (No. 12)

The four women’s teams that did the same:

• Tyra Turner and Rachel Wacholder (No. 6)

• Lauren Fendrick and Paula Roca (No. 10)

• Jennifer Fopma and Brittany Hochevar (No. 11)

• Ivy and Lowe (No. 12)

Two-for-two? Jennifer Boss and April Ross, the team that sent Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh packing in last week’s semifinals, will get a rematch Sunday morning.

As the No. 2 seeds, Boss and Ross could have put such a meeting off until the final, but they were knocked off in their third-round winner’s bracket match against No. 3 Nicole Branagh and Elaine Youngs, 21-11, 21-19. That pushed them into the contender’s bracket, where they had to dispatch No. 5 Angie Akers and Holly McPeak, 21-11, 21-14.

The windy conditions in the stadium court played a bit of havoc with the Boss/Ross attack, so they deliberately kept things more simple against Akers and McPeak.

“We changed a lot, strategy-wise, coming into this match (against Akers/McPeak), so it was good to figure that out,” Ross said. “We were just focusing on keeping everything small . . . keeping our serves in, not really going after ripping them. I think if we would have figured that out before our first match, it would have been way different.”

As for facing May-Treanor/Walsh again, Ross acknowledged that last week’s win breeds confidence, but pointed out it also stokes the flame of revenge for the two-time Olympic gold medalists.

“You know that they fight back real hard,” Ross said. “We know that for them, the target’s on our back this week. So we’re going to have to come out and play better than we did last week, I think.”

Breaking through: Gibb and partner Sean Rosenthal not only secured a spot in the semifinals Saturday, but they also broke a drought against their opponent, second-seeded Nick Lucena and Sean Scott, with a 21-19, 21-19 win.

“We were 0-2 against them this year, so that’s a big win for us,” Gibb said. “We just sided out better. That was a big deal because Sean Scott is a really a great blocker and he’s had our number in the past. We had a little bit more success this time.”

Gibb and Rosenthal are on course for a potential finals showdown with No. 1 seeds Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers, who cruised into the semis thanks to a 22-20, 21-12 win against John Hyde and Brad Keenan.

“Phil and Todd can look forward to the final,” Gibb said. “We can’t. We have to battle every single team out there.”

In other results: Lucena and Scott went two and out from the tournament. Fifth-seeded Stein Metzger and Mark Williams posted a 21-17, 21-19 over Lucena/Scott to earn a spot in the semis against Dalhausser/Rogers. . . . Annett Davis and Jenny Johnson Jordan knocked off DeNecochea/Fontana 21-17, 21-9 to reach the semis, where they’ll face Branagh/Youngs.

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Manhattan Beach Links

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2008 Manhattan Beach Schedule

Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Men’s and Women’s Qualifier Competition
Gates open at 7:30 a.m.
Competition start time 8:00 a.m.
Competition End Time (Approx) 5:00 p.m.

Thursday, September 18, 2008
Men’s and Women’s Qualifier Competition
Gates open at 7:30 a.m.
Competition start time 9:00 a.m.
Competition End Time (Approx) 4:00 p.m.

Friday, September 19, 2008
Men’s and Women’s Main Draw Competition
Gates open at 8:30 a.m.
Competition start time 9:00 a.m.
Competition End Time (Approx) 6:30 p.m.

Saturday, September 20, 2008
Men’s and Women’s Main Draw Competition
Gates open at 8:30 a.m.
Competition start time 9:00 a.m.
Competition End Time (Approx) 5:00 p.m.

Sunday, September 21, 2008
Men’s and Women’s Main Draw Competition
Gates open at 10:15 a.m.
Competition start time 10:45 a.m.
Women’s Finals 2:30 p.m.
Men’s Finals 4:00 p.m.
Competition End Time (Approx) 4:00 p.m.

2007 AVP Manhattan Beach Open

2007 AVP Manhattan Beach Open

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