NCAA Beach Volleyball

USC Beach Volleyball’s Cheng and Hughes Claim Gold at Ostrava Elite 16

USC Beach Volleyball's Cheng and Hughes Claim Gold at Ostrava Elite 16

Women’s Beach Volleyball | June 10, 2024

OSTRAVA, Czech Republic – USC beach volleyball All-American pros and reigning world champions Kelly Cheng (Fullerton, Calif.) and Sara Hughes (Costa Mesa, Calif.) collected gold medals on Sunday (June 9) at the FIVB World Beach Pro Tour stop in Ostrava.
The win further cemented Cheng-Hughes among U.S. women’s pairs in contention to be named to the U.S. beach national team that will compete at the Olympic Games in Paris this summer. It was the first international tournament victory for the duo since they claimed the world championship in October 2023.
The Trojan duo defeated Canadians Melissa Humana-Paredes and Brandie Wilkerson in three sets, 21-13, 21-23, 15-12, in the gold-medal match and had to take down Brazil’s Eduarda Santos Lisboa (Duda) and Ana Patricia Ramos in the semifinals, 21-19, 21-18.
It was the sixth international and ninth overall victory of the two Women of Troy since they joined forces for the second time in their careers at the end of 2022. It was also the second title in Ostrava for Cheng. She won in 2021 with former partner Sarah Sponcil. Individually, the win marked the ninth FIVB crown for Cheng and the 10th for Hughes. The pair is co-coached by USC associate head coach Gustavo Rocha and Jordan Cheng.

Four-time USC beach All-American Tina Graudina (Jurmala, Latvia) and partner Anastasija Samoilova took home bronze medals and are also on track to represent their native Latvia in the Olympic games.

In the men’s field, USC alum Andy Benesh and Miles Partain (USA) secured their best result of the season by beating Olympic champions Anders Mol and Christian Sørum of Norway in straight sets, 21-15, 21-14, in the bronze medal match.


The Women of Troy won an unprecedented fourth straight NCAA championship this week to up the program’s total to seven all-time national titles. Top-ranked USC finished the season 37-5 overall and went 4-0 at the championship with an incredible 12-0 mark in individual court play. It is the 136th national title won by a USC team and the school’s 113th NCAA team championship. USC became the first women’s…

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