Eight quarter-finalists decided on Friday in Mollymook

Eight quarter-finalists decided on Friday in Mollymook

Eight teams qualified for the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour Futures quarter-finals at Mollymook today, with another eight to be determined on Saturday morning.

Four men’s and four women’s teams completed their pool campaign undefeated to move within one win of a medal match, while four teams in each draw have been eliminated after back-to-back losses.

Four different nations are represented so far in the men’s quarter-finals, including the host nation after Izac Carracher and Mark Nicolaidis confidently moved through today’s encounter.

Up against Australian-based German duo Martin Kaufer and Ole Schwarmann, the top seeds raced through the first set conceding just seven points, but were made to work harder in the second set which they took 21-19.

Having won their first-ever national tour event together at Mollymook two years ago, the pair were happy to return to the NSW south coast and are enjoying their success of the opening two days.

“We’re stoked to be back, it’s beautiful conditions today,” said Carracher. “We’re just really excited to continue the tournament.

“We’re through to the quarters tomorrow so we can’t wait to rip in.”

Nicolaidis said he and the other Australian teams were welcoming the opportunity to play an international event on home soil.

“Being so far away in Australia we don’t get the opportunity too often so it’s great to have a lot of teams making the trip here,” he said. “We appreciate it obviously and I think they do too.

“It’s one of our favourite beaches to play on – it’s where we started and it’s lovely to be back.

Australian teams Jack Pearse and Paul Burnett along with Ben Hood and D’Artagnan Potts lost to their American and Canadian opponents respectively, but still live to fight another day in the Round of 12.

Declan Tiso and Robert Reeves are also through to the weekend after beating compatriots Josh Howat and Ruben Gale, securing the final qualifying position from their pool.

Fresh from back-to-back wins on the Australian Beach Volleyball Tour, Stefie Fejes and Jana Milutinovic moved into the quarter-finals with a straight sets win over Americans Tiffany Creamer and Katie Lindstrom to top their pool.

After winning their only other Futures event on home soil at Coolangatta last year, the pair weren’t entirely satisfied with their performance but after trying some new things were happy to get away with the win.

“We went in to be a bit more explorative in this game, and I think that’s when it comes with a bit of your mind going everywhere but we needed to tune in and slowly find our way, our rhythm,” said Fejes.

Milutinovic paid credit to their opponents, forcing them to dig deep to remain undefeated this week.

“Definitely needed to find our groove and grind it out,” she said. “USA never dies, never gives up so we knew it was going to be a tough battle but glad to have got it done.”

Jasmine Rayner and Lizzie Alchin went down today to USA’s Alaina Chacon and Mariah Whalen, however they remain in the round of 12 with an opportunity to move on in the tournament.

They are joined by Georgia Johnson and Jasmine Fleming who overcame Thursday’s defeat with an emphatic 21-11, 21-12 victory over their English opponents.

Day four of the Beach Pro Tour starts at 10am AEDT on Saturday morning with the Round of 12 before the Quarter-Finals get underway from 2pm AEDT.

Click here for schedule and results.

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