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Top Seeds Remain Undefeated at AVP Manhattan Beach Open

Aug 20, 2022 09:55PM ● By AVP News Feed

Sarah Sponcil dives for the ball. Photo via AVP news feed.

The top-seeded women’s and men’s pairs in the AVP Gold Series Manhattan Beach Open each remained undefeated in the winners’ bracket, clinching their two matches on Saturday to cruise into the tournament’s semifinals.

Leading women's pair Sarah Sponcil and Terese Cannon, and leading men's pair Theo Brunner and Chaim Schalk - both coming off respective victories at the AVP Pro Series Hermosa Beach Open six weeks ago - aim to win a coveted plaque on the Manhattan Beach Pier and to secure a "South Bay Sweep."

Sponcil and Cannon opened the day Saturday with a 21-14, 21-18 victory over ninth-seeded Corinne Quiggle and Sarah Schermerhorn in the Round of 16, and then battled for a 22-20, 21-15 triumph over fifth-seeded Brandie Wilkerson and Zana Muno to punch their ticket to the semifinals.

Schalk and Brunner started the morning with an unexpected challenge, fighting through three taxing sets to eventually upend 24th-seeded Brian Miller and Raffe Paulis, 21-18, 21-23, 16-14. The experience seemed to stoke their competitive fire, because the next time they stepped on the court – for a rematch of the Hermosa Beach finals – they took down fifth-seeded Taylor Crabb and Taylor Sander, 23-21, 21-15.

Theo Brunner - Photo via AVP news feed.

Schalk – a 2016 Olympian – and Brunner have now advanced to the semifinals in all five AVP tournaments they have played this season and will be seeking their fourth championship match appearance in 2022.

Meanwhile, Sponcil – a 2020 Olympian – and Cannon will be aiming to reach the women’s final for the third time in four tournaments.

The other women’s team to secure a spot in the semifinals was third-seeded Kelly Cheng – a 2020 Olympian – and Betsi Flint. The pair, coming off an international tour victory in Germany last week, toppled sixth-seeded Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss, 21-19, 21-18, and then upset second-seeded Sara Hughes and Kelley Kolinske, 21-16, 21-13. They have lost just one set in Manhattan Beach, and their semifinals appearance will be their fifth in six AVP tournaments this season.

Hughes and Kolinske will take on 13th-seeded Megan Kraft and Emily Stockman in Sunday’s contenders’ bracket quarterfinals, with Wilkerson and Muno battling Kloth and Nuss on the opposite side of the bracket.

The men’s semis will also feature defending Manhattan Beach Open champions Tri Bourne and Trevor Crabb, the second seeds who battled 11th-seeded Billy Allen and Jeremy Casebeer in the last match of the day Saturday on stadium court and emerged with an epic 21-15, 17-21, 18-16 victory.

Four men’s teams will fight to survive Sunday morning to secure a spot in the semifinals, as Crabb and Sander will take on third-seeded Paul Lotman and Miles Partain, while seventh-seeded Andy Benesh and Miles Evans will meet Allen and Casebeer. Contenders’ bracket quarterfinals begin Sunday at 9:00 a.m., with the semifinals starting at 11:00 a.m.

The women’s championship match is scheduled for approximately 1:00 p.m., with the men’s final set for approximately 2:00 p.m.

The three-day Manhattan Beach Open runs through Sunday and features 32 men’s and 32 women’s teams competing for a $300,000 purse, tied for the largest of the season. It is the tenth event in a 2022 AVP schedule that includes 16 tournaments in 12 states across the country and offers $2 million in prize money – the most comprehensive tournament slate for the AVP since 2009.

Brackets for both the men’s and women’s competition can be viewed here.

Saturday’s Winners’ Bracket Notable Matchups


· Third round: (1) Terese Cannon/Sarah Sponcil def. (9) Corinne Quiggle/Sarah Schermerhorn, 21-14, 21-18

· Third round: (2) Sara Hughes/Kelley Kolinske def. (7) Sarah Pavan/Mackenzie Ponnet, 21-15, 22-20

· Third round: (3) Kelly Cheng/Betsi Flint def. (6) Taryn Kloth/Kristen Nuss, 21-19, 21-18

· Third round: (5) Zana Muno/Brandie Wilkerson def. (13) Megan Kraft/Emily Stockman, 21-18, 21-19

· Winners’ bracket quarterfinals: (1) Terese Cannon/Sarah Sponcil def. (5) Zana Muno/Brandie Wilkerson, 22-20, 21-15

· Winners’ bracket quarterfinals: (3) Kelly Cheng/Betsi Flint def. (2) Sara Hughes/Kelley Kolinske, 21-16, 21-13


· Third round: (1) Theo Brunner/Chaim Schalk def. (24) Brian Miller/Raffe Paulis, 21-18, 21-23, 16-14

· Third round: (2) Tri Bourne/Trevor Crabb def. (10) Avery Drost/Chase Frishman, 22-20, 21-18

· Third round: (5) Taylor Crabb/Taylor Sander def. (4) Chase Budinger/Troy Field, 21-16, 21-19

· Third round: (11) Billy Allen/Jeremy Casebeer def. (19) Jake Dietrich/Hagen Smith, 16-21, 21-19, 15-12

· Winners’ bracket quarterfinals: (1) Theo Brunner/Chaim Schalk def. (5) Taylor Crabb/Taylor Sander, 23-21, 21-15

· Winners’ bracket quarterfinals: (2) Tri Bourne/Trevor Crabb def. (11) Billy Allen/Jeremy Casebeer, 21-15, 17-21, 18-16

Sunday’s Key Matchups


· 9 a.m. PT: Women’s contenders’ bracket quarterfinal: (2) Sara Hughes/Kelley Kolinske vs. (13) Megan Kraft/Emily Stockman

· 9 a.m. PT: Women’s contenders’ bracket quarterfinal: (5) Zana Muno/Brandie Wilkerson vs. (6) Taryn Kloth/Kristen Nuss

· 11:00 a.m. PT: Women’s semifinal:(1) Terese Cannon/Sarah Sponcil vs. TBD

· 11:00 a.m. PT: Women’s semifinal:(3) Kelly Cheng/Betsi Flint vs. TBD

· 1 p.m. PT: Women’s final: TBD vs. TBD



· 10 a.m. PT: Men’s contenders’ bracket quarterfinal: (7) Andy Benesh/Miles Evans vs. (11) Billy Allen/Jeremy Casebeer

· 10 a.m. PT: Men’s contenders’ bracket quarterfinal: (3) Paul Lotman/Miles Partain vs. (5) Taylor Crabb/Taylor Sander

· 12:00 p.m. PT: Men’s semifinal:(1) Theo Brunner/Chaim Schalkvs. TBD

· 12:00 p.m. PT: Men’s semifinal:(2) Tri Bourne/Trevor Crabb vs. TBD

· 2 p.m. PT: Men’s final: TBD vs TBD

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