USA's Ross, Klineman dump the Dutch in pouring rain to stay unbeaten

(Getty Images)


Rain poured hard, and Team USA's second-seeded beach volleyball team of April Ross and Alix Klineman only slipped slightly in their three-set victory against Dutch duo Sanne Keizer and Madelein Meppelink, 20-22, 21-17, 15-5. It was all on the line for Keizer and Meppelink, who -- at the bottom of Pool B -- were fighting for a potential spot in the lucky loser playoffs.

The rain caused a technical timeout early during the tight first set, which saw the Americans and the Dutch essentially go point-for-point. But Keizer and Meppelink, playing an aggressive offense, edged out the Americans on a second set point. 

The downpour continued in set two, but the Americans got a grip. Keizer and Meppelink took an early lead, and were tied 12-12 by the next timeout. The Americans turned the set around shortly afterward, winning the second partially due to Dutch service errors.   

Thunder roared in the final set and thick rain splattered the cameras and drenched the players. Team USA, with a 22-8 record in three-setters, took the advantage and ran -- finally finishing off the Dutch with a ten-point margin.

Regardless of the outcome, Ross and Klineman had already qualified for the Round of 16 after wins against China and Spain. 

Ross, who won silver at the 2012 London Games and bronze in Rio, is now 9-0 in pool play in all of her Olympic matches.