International Volleyball

Flint-Scoles go 1-1 to start Pro Beach Tour Vienna Elite16 pool play

Flint-Scoles go 1-1 to start Pro Beach Tour Vienna Elite16 pool play

Betsy Flint watches Julia Scoles hit past Teegan Van Gunst in Wednesday’s all-USA battle/Volleyball World photo

USA Volleyball beach teams provided a little bit of everything through qualifying Tuesday to the start of pool play Wednesday at the Beach Pro Tour Vienna Elite16.

Betsi Flint and Julia Scoles went 1-1 on Wednesday, with that win coming against countrywomen Kim Hildreth and Teegan Van Gunst. Hildreth and Van Gunst got through the qualifier, advancing with a big upset of Germans Laura Ludwig and Louisa Lippmann.

On the men’s side, in their last tournament before the Olympics, Andy Benesh and Miles Partain start pool play Thursday.

Starting with the qualifier, Hildreth and Van Gunst opened with a sweep of Czech youngsters Kylie Neuschaeferova and Marketa Svozilova before beating Ludwig, the 2016 Olympic gold-medalist making a comeback after having two children, and Lippmann 30-28, 24-22.

In pool play, however, they opened with Flint and Scoles, who won 21-15, 26-28, 15-13. Flint and Scoles then lost to the Swiss pair of Zoe Verge-Depre and Esmee Bobner. Hildreth and Van Gunst finished the day with a 21-16, 21-15 loss to Spain’s Daniela Alvarez and Tania Moreno, the TCU pair taking the year off from college who will represent their country in Paris. They, too, went 1-1 after losing to the Swiss.

Last weekend, the new team of former USC Trojans Megan Kraft and Terese Cannon could do no wrong and made it all the way to Gstaad Elite16 final. Wednesday they lost to Australian Olympians Mariafe Artacho and Taliqua Clancy 17-21, 21-18, 15-12, but bounced back with a 21-18, 21-18 win over Ukraine’s Maryna Hladun and Tetiana Lazarenko. Thursday they play their former USC teammate, Tina Graudina, and her Latvian teammate Anastasija Samilova. The Latvians, seeded No. 1, are 2-0 after beating the Ukrainians and Aussies.

The only USA men’s pair in the qualifier, Tim Brewster and Logan Webber, were bounced by Spain’s Adrian Gavira and Pablo Herrera 21-16, 21-17. Benesh and Partain, seeded sixth, play Germans Lukas Pfretzschner and Sven Winter and Australians Paul Burnett and Christopher McHugh on Thursday.

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