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Sunday, August 24, 2008

U.S. men Dalhausser/Rogers won beach volleyball gold

After a setback in the second set, Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers of the United States squeezed past Marcio Araujo and Fabio Luiz Magalhaes of Brazil in men's beach volleyball final at the Beijing Olympics on Friday.

The Americans had to play three sets to win the match. The three sets went 23-21, 17-21 and 15-4.

The Brazilian duo claimed the silver medals.

The Americans trailed 1-6 as the first set began but were able to make up the loss to 10-10. The two teams then traded points to 19-19 before a spike by Rogers sent the U.S. team to set point and the Americans led to end the first set 23-21.

In the second set, the two teams traded points to 15-15 before the Brazilian pair outscored and got the set point 20-16 and finishing the set 21-17.

The efficiency of the 2.06-meter Dalhausser at the net left the Brazilians almost no resistance in the third set and increased the scores of the U.S. duo steadily set as the Americans claimed the decider 15-4.

"It's the best feeling (to get the gold medal) in my lifetime, I can't believe it," said Dalhausser after the match.

"I've won just about every tournament I hoped to win, but this is the one that has always eluded me," Rogers said.

The American duo said they were prepared for the difficulties in the match.

"We were prepared for a three-set match, " Rogers said on the setback of the second set.

"We got off to a slow start, but once we got it going, we got it going. " said Dalhausser.

Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers, the 2007 world champions, have been widely considered to be gold favorites.

Dalhausser was FIVB World Tour best blocker in 2006 and 2007 and best hitter in 2007 while his partner Rogers was best FIVB World Tour defensive player in 2006 and 2007. They were also placed first on the Olympic qualification ranking.

The two said they were partnership was perfect.

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