2008 Olympic Gold Medalists

2008 Olympic Gold Medalists
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Monday, August 24, 2009


I have fond memories of Muskegon from years pasts. Great weather and even won an event there in 2000 I think with Dax. After this weekend, there are more to add to the fond memory store. Although I will say that the weather wasn't as I remembered it. Friday was howling windy as in 30 MPH sustained winds or so with gusts even greater. Saturday was less wind, 15-20 MPH, but showers dropped every 20 minutes it seemed like. Sunday started out a bit overcast but ended up being a beautiful day with a touch of wind in the finals.

In the windstorm on Friday we played local hometown heroes Pete Goers and Stevo Vanderwerp. Stevo's dad, Scott has been a big fan of beach volleyball over the years and helped put the tourney on this year. They played very well and gave Phil and I all we could handle. In the first game we were down most of the game by a point or two. We pulled it out at the end to win 21-19. In the second it was again neck and neck until about 15-13. Then we pulled away with several points and won 21-16. In our second game we played Larry Witt and Jeff Carlucci. We won in 3 games. We smoked them in the first. Then they were smoking us in the second but we came back and made it close to fall 21-19. In the third we ended up smoking them after a tough call went against them and for us to make it 3-2 us. Final score was like 15-8.

On Saturday we played Pedro Brazao and Matt Prosser. They came out bombing serves and took the first game. We were down 7-1 to start the game mostly on Matt crushing jump serves and making things difficult for us. In the second we played better and won. In the third we were down 9-5 I think but came back with some clutch plays to win 15-13 in the third. In our second match we played Nick and Brad. They played well in the first and won the first game. We changed our strategy a bit and took the second and third games fairly easily.

On Sunday we played Jeff Nygaard and John Mayer in the semis. Phil pretty much put on a serving clinic. He was crushing the ball from both sides. I really didn't do anything as he went on huge serving runs. In the first game I didn't even serve from one side for the entire game. I think the scores were 14 and 12. In the finals we played Nick and Brad who beat John and Sean in the semis. I struggled to sideout in the first game. Wasn't getting many clean sideouts to the sand. We scored a couple of points on a block by Phil and dig by me to get back to even. We were down game point at 20-19 but I sided out. Nick argued that Phil had chucked the ball but I didn't think it was even close. The next ball Phil blocked Brad to go up the game point. The next play I dug Brad but Nick dug me back. The ball was tight so Brad tried to go over on 2 but I blocked him for game to get my lone block for the tourney. In the second they came out really flat making errors and what not. We ended up winning that game 21-10 to win the title.

We have been on a good run of late winning the last 5 tourneys we have played in. It's been fun and hopefully we can continue to have fun in Chicago. It is going to be a quick 30 hour tourney for the men so hopefully it won't be Chicago hot and humid. If it is, guys might be dropping like flies.

Monday, August 17, 2009

San Francisco

Finally won in San Francisco. For whatever reason, Atlanta and SF have been stumbling blocks for Phil and I. We flew in early and did some promotional work for the Barefoot Wine AVPNext Championship Cup on Thursday. I thought it went very well and hopefully Barefoot and the AVP were happy.

On Friday we played only one match as it was a 24 team draw and we received the bye in the first round. We played Paul Baxter and Jonathon Acosta. The first game we won 21-16 as Phil served and blocked really well. In the second game we were up 20-15 and they came back all the way to 19. Fortunately we put that ball away and escaped with the victory. That evening we went to the A's vs. White Sox game in Oakland. Took the BART which took about 20 minutes or so. Watched a couple of innings and then met up with Bob Alejo, one of our trainers and now the trainer for the A's. Went down into the clubhouse and hung with him for a couple of innings and then got out of there in the 9th before the crowds got to thick. They ended up losing 8-7 in the 10th.

On Saturday we played Braidy and Billy and played very well. We won 15 and 15. I think I sided out everytime I got served. In our second match we played Wong and Olson for the third tourney in a row. It was a good game and we won 19 and 18. They are playing at a very high level right now.

On Sunday we played Rosy and Gibb in the crossover semis. They had lost in the first round and had battled all the way back. They came out on fire and beat us in the first game. They were serving really tough and Rosy was playing great defense. They only had one ace but were forcing bad passes by both Phil and I and creating points that way. I think they won 21-14. In the second game we played better and they didn't serve as well. We won 21-15. In the third we steadily pulled ahead and then they creaped back in. I sided out for game to win 15-13 in the third. In the finals we again played Sean and John. We played very well on all fronts. I had a bit of sideout snafu when we were up 17-12 and gave up 3 points in a row on two out hits and a stuff by Sean. I cleaned it up though and we won 21-15. The second game we again played well and won 21-16. Good tourney for us as we played solid ball the entire time. Now on to Muskegon, Michigan.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Hermosa Beach

We were able to keep the magic rolling from Europe to here in the states. Hermosa was fantastic as always. Great weather, crowd and I love the sand there. It is deep and allows you to play great defense. Guys can't hit extreme angles and it is all about ball control. I took my son, Nate, down to the event. We got up at 5am on Friday and drove down to Hermosa for the 9am match. Usually I take Hannah, my daughter, to this event but she was in a horse roping competition on friday. Plus, Nate has never come with me to a full event so Hermosa Beach was a good one to start. It is close, I know lots of people there and you have the ocean to play in too.

In the first round Phil and I played the qualifier team of Mike Szymanski and John Wankner. We had never played them before but I know Mike has been playing for quite some time. We won 13 and 12. It was difficult at first to play on the sand of Hermosa as our last tourney in Austria the sand was very packed and guys were flying off the sand. Then all of a sudden you are jumping in the Hermosa sand and you aren't going anywhere. After that game Phil, Coach Nate and I went to speak to the sponsors at the AVP Sponsor Summit. I think it went pretty well as Geeter MC'd it and the sponsors seemed genuinely interested in what we had to say about the new AVP management as well as a host of other things. Then it was time to get back on the sand for our noon match against John Moran and Mike Placek. Phil and I played great in that match and we won, 7 and 12. In the first they just could not get the ball past Phil and if they did I was scooping it. After the game, Nate and I went and checked into the hotel but came back to the beach to do a Red Bull clinic for some high school kids from 5 to 6:30. Clinic went well and I think the kids enjoyed it.

On Saturday we played the quarters of the winners at 9am against Ty Loomis and Casey Patterson who are having an outstanding season. They served really tough and had a bunch of aces but we prevailed 17 and 14. Then we had to hang out all day long as our next match wasn't until after the women's finals at 1pm. So we played the winners semis around 3pm against Kevin Wong and Matt Olson. They had beaten us in Manhattan Beach as Matt had played the best I have ever seen him play in regards to siding out. So this time we went more at Kevin and it seemed to work. I sided out better in Hermosa than I did in Manhattan Beach and we won, 19 and 14. Immediately following that match I did a Red Bull signing outside of Hennessey's Bar on the Hermosa Promenade. I was there for about an hour and saw some people I have not seen in a long time. Then Nate and I were able to get off the beach and back to the hotel for some rest.

On Sunday Coach Nate and I checked out of the hotel and headed down to the beach for our semifinal match at 10:30 vs. Brad Keenan and Nick Lucena. The first game we played very well and they did not. The second game was a battle. They were siding out very well, mixing up shots and hits. Nick really picked up his defense and started making some crazy scoops. There were ahead by a point when a long rally ensued. We ended up winning that rally and from there were able to pull out the game. The scores were 10 and 19. In the finals we played John Hyden and Sean Scott for the 4th time. We had lost to them in the last 2 finals we had met. In the first game they sided out really well. We sided out well but they were pretty much perfect and didn't give up many if any points. We had a couple of chances but couldn't convert. In the second game I picked up my defense and gave us more opportunities to score points and we did. In the third game it was back and forth until 7 all. We then scored 3 straight and were able to push through all the way to the victory. The scores were, 18-21, 21-15, and 15-9. Good to get back on the top of the podium on the AVP. After the finals we hung around for about 3 hours as I was playing with Shaq vs. Misty/Kerri. I won't say much as people are going to have to watch the Shaq vs. reality show to see how we did. I will say that Shaq is a very funny funny guy and fun to play with too. This meant we didn't get home until around 10:00 that night. Very long weekend but Coach Nate did a great job just like Coach Hannah has done for the past 3 Hermosa Beach Open's.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Klagenfurt, Austria

I love this place! Not only is it the most amazing tournament on the planet, it also happens to be beautiful. To top it off, the weather was fantastic. Warm and sunny all week long. The lake was warm but cool enough to refresh you when you jumped in, which I did after every single game. The fans were crazy as always and the stadium was full the entire weekend. It is so different playing here than playing in the states. The fans sing and dance all day long. They know every song the DJ plays and have a dance or chant or whatever to every song. It is really a fun environment to play in.

Competition wise we again played well. In pool play we matched up against the team from Denmark first. The first game was back and forth. I felt really good siding out and playing defense. They scored some points off a wicked deep floater off of Phil to get back within a point or two but they could never get completely over the hump. In the second game we cleaned it up and ended up winning 18 and 12. Our next match was vs. Japan. Shiratori is one of the best defenders in the game but he had an off day against us. We usually don't serve him but his partner, Asahi was siding out okay. We tried Tori and it worked well. He just wasn't himself. We won 13 and 12. Those games were on Thursday. Friday morning we played our last pool play game vs. Switzerland :) to determine who got out first in pool and received a bye in the first round of single elimination. The Swiss served very well but so did Phil. It felt like we were in control pretty much the whole match. Can't remember scores but they were something like 18 and 15.

So we received the bye and played the winner of Klemperer/Koreng and Franco/Nalbert. K/K won as Nalbert hurt himself. We seem to play quite well against Eric and David and this time was no exception. Both Phil and I got pegged pretty hard in the face though. Eric got me pretty good. He got a tight set and hit a fastball through Phil's arms that cut my face up due to my glasses. Eric is top 5 as far as how hard he hits and my head can attest to that. Then David nailed Phil pretty good on the block. I think the scores were 15 and 12. Our next match on Saturday was a rematch of the Olympic final. We played really well in that match. Phil blocked well and I sided out well and that was pretty much the match. I think scores were 16 and 15.

On Sunday we played Igor/Bars from Russia. They played very well this weekend and took 4th. We match up well against this team too. Phil served well and blocked well and I scooped a fair amount of balls and sided out very well too. Scores were about 17 and 15. In the finals we played Harley/Allison from Brasil. They beat the Netherlands after being down 9-4 in the third. We started off serving Allison but he was crushing balls off the top of Phil so we went to Harley. We were down in game 1 by about 3 points when we went to Harley and we were able to score a couple and steal the game 21-19. Then in the third they beat us down 21-12. I couldn't side out to save my life basically. In the third it was a sideout battle to 10. I think they scored 1 point and we scored 0 points up to that point in the game. Phil's serve had been really good all weekend but was terrible in the finals. I told him he either needed to just rip it or float serve. He opted for the latter of the two and we scored 3 straight points. Phil stuffed Harley, then Harley forced a pass to Allison to hit on two and Phil was all over it for the stuff, and lastly Harley shanked a knuckleball float serve for an ace. Then Phil hit one in the middle of the net but Harley followed that up with a jump serve about 8 feet wide. That made it 14-11. Harley sided out but I did too on the ensuing play for a 15-12 victory. We didn't play as well as we had been playing but a W is all that matters in the end.

Now I get to hop on a plane in a couple of hours and fly back home. Not looking forward to the plane ride but looking forward to seeing my family and sleeping in my own bed.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

AVP Hermosa Beach, California. Aug. 7-9

Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser will be competing in the AVP event in Hermosa Beach, California on August 7-9.

Olympic Gold medalists, Todd Rogers & Phil Dalhausser will will assist Shaquille O'Neal as he takes on 2 time U.S. Olympic Gold medalists, Misty May-Treanor & Kerri Walsh. This match will be filmed at Hermosa Beach on August 9, at 3:30pm, to later be broadcast on a new reality show, 'Shaq Vs.'.

Results from Hermosa Beach will be posted on the Todd Rogers web page: http://www.ToddJRogers.com/