No. 1 USC Beach Takes Down South Carolina in 4-0 NCAA Victory

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    May 5, 2017

    GULF SHORES, Ala. -- The No. 1-ranked and top-seeded USC beach volleyball team (35-1) defeated eighth-seeded No. 10 South Carolina (23-10) by a 4-0 count in the first round of the 2017 NCAA championship on Friday, May 5. The Women of Troy won their third straight dual and set a new program record with the season's 35th win.

    USC won first sets on all five courts to seize early control of the dual. The Gamecocks fought back to tighten up the second sets, but seniors Kelly Claes and Sara Hughes started the Trojans off with a point from the top court as they defeated Adrianna Culbert and Katie Smith, 21-15, 21-15, for their 15th straight win; 45th overall this season.

    With three other courts running concert, the Trojans clinched the dual with wins in rapid succession, and scored four points as courts three and five finished nearly simultaneously. The second dual point came from court four where sophomore Abril Bustamante and freshman Joy Dennis took down Julia Mannisto and Carly Schnieder, 21-14, 21-18.

    At court five, following a 21-17 win in the first set, juniors Jenna Belton and Jo Kremer were caught in a battle for the final points of set two with Franky Harrison and Jade Vitt. The Trojan duo broke a 20-all tie and came away with a 24-22 win. Just moments before that match ended, junior Terese Cannon and senior Nicolette Martin scored the clinching point with their 21-14, 21-18 win over Macie Tendrich and Katie Zimmerman at court three. With the dual decided, seniors Sophie Bukovec and Allie Wheeler had their match suspended after they split sets with Alison Denney and Shannon Williams, 21-16 and 16-21.

    Up next, the Trojans will face either fourth-seeded Florida State (27-7) or fifth-seeded Hawai'i (25-5) in the winner's bracket semifinal. The teams will meet at 3 p.m. CT (1 p.m. PT) and be shown live on truTV. All courts are also available to be streamed live on computers and mobile devices via NCAA.com/liveschedule.

    For more information on the two-time national champion USC beach volleyball team and a complete schedule and results, please visit USCTrojans.com and follow @USCBeach on Facebook, Twitter, Periscope, Instagram, and Snapchat.

    [1] No. 1 USC def. [8] No. 10 South Carolina, 4-0
    2017 NCAA Championship • First Round
    The Hangout • Gulf Shores, Ala.
    Friday, May 5, 2017
    Records: USC (35-1), South Carolina (23-10)
    1. Kelly Claes/Sara Hughes (USC) def. Adrianna Culbert/Katie Smith (SC); 21-15, 21-15
    2. Sophie Bukovec/Allie Wheeler (USC) vs. Alison Denney/Shannon Williams (SC); 21-16, 16-21 DNF
    3. Terese Cannon/Nicolette Martin (USC) def. Macie Tendrich/Katie Zimmerman (SC); 21-14, 21-18
    4. Abril Bustamante/Joy Dennis (USC) def. Julia Mannisto/Carly Schnieder (SC); 21-14, 21-18
    5. Jenna Belton/Jo Kremer (USC) def. Franky Harrison/Jade Vitt (SC); 21-17, 24-22
    Order of finish: 1, 4, 3*, 5