International Volleyball

Kloth-Nuss, Budinger-Evans, Benesh-Partain get through Espinho Elite16 pool play

Kloth-Nuss, Budinger-Evans, Benesh-Partain get through Espinho Elite16 pool play

Taryn Kloth watches Kristen Nuss dig against Portugal/Volleyball World photo

Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss, Chase Budinger and Miles Evans, and Andy Benesh and Miles Partain got through pool play Friday at the Volleyball World Beach Tour Elite16 in Espinho, Portugal, as three of the four USA teams left made it to Saturday’s single-elimination bracket.

Fifth-seeded Kloth and Nuss got out of pool play with a 21-15, 21-12 victory over 12th-seeded Ines Castro and Beatriz Pinheiro of Portugal. They went 1-1 Thursday.

But the other Americans left in the women’s field, second-seeded Kelly Cheng and Sara Hughes, failed to get out of pool play after losing 21-17, 29-27 to Swiss Olympians Joana Mader and Anouk Verge-Depre, who were seeded 15th after coming through the qualifier.

Now on Saturday, Kloth and Nuss will play Verge-Depree and Mader in the winners bracket. The loser goes home, while the winner is in the quarterfinals against top-seeded Brazilians Ana Patricia and Duda.

Budinger and Evans, the 13th seed who made it through the qualifier and went 1-1 Thursday, advanced with a 21-19, 21-14 victory over fourth-seeded Brazilians Andre Loyola and George Wanderly.

Budinger and Evans drew one of the four byes into the quarterfinals and await the winner of the match between ninth-seeded Benesh and Partain vs. sixth-seeded Germans Nils Ehlers and Clemens Wickler.

After losing their match Thursay, Benesh and Partain went 1-1 Friday to advance. They thumped 16th-seeded Mathias Berntsen and Hendrik Mol of Norway 21-14, 21-14, but then lost to eight-seeded Matthew Immers and Steven van de Velde of the Netherlands 21-15, 16-21, 15-7.

Sara Hughes hits past Joana Mader/Volleyball World photo

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