USC's Sara Hughes Wins NORCECA Beach Tourney In Puerto Rico

    Sara Hughes (right) with Lane Carrico

    Sept. 23, 2013

    USC freshman women's sand volleyball player Sara Hughes teamed with Lane Carico to win the Porta del Sol Beach Volleyball Tournament at Boqueron, Puerto Rico, part of the NORCECA Beach Circuit, on Sunday (Sept. 22).

    Hughes and Carico, in only their second match together representing the USA, scored a 21-10, 21-18 victory over Canada's Kacie MacTavish and Caleigh Whitaker.

    Hughes, who won a bronze medal at this summer's FIVB U19 World Championship in Porto, Portugal, came to USC after earning 2012 All-CIF first team honors as an indoor star at Mater Dei High in Santa Ana (Calif.).

    Trojans Stevi Robinson and Kirby Burnham of the USA placed fourth in Puerto Rico. The duo was USC's first-ever sand volleyball All-Americans when they won the 2013 AVCA National Pairs Championship this past spring. Burnham is a USC senior, while Robinson concluded her USC eligibility this past season.

    In the semifinal round, Hughes and Carico came from behind to claim a three set victory (14-21, 21-13, 16-14) over Martha Revuelta and former Trojan Bibi Candelas of Mexico. Burnham and Robinson lost in three sets, 21-10, 17-21, 15-7, to MacTavish and Whitaker in the semis and then fell 21-18, 21-11 to Revuelta and Candelas in the bronze medal match.

    It was the second consecutive NORCECA podium for Carico, a Georgia State graduate whose sister, Taylor, was a one-time setter for the Women of Troy indoor team. She teamed up with Heather Hughes to win the bronze medal in Mazatlán, Mexico the previous weekend.