Metter Finishes Fifth at U23 World Championships
Betsi Metter reached the quarterfinals of the U23 World Championships with her partner Kelley Larsen.
June 14, 2014
INFORMATION GATHERED FROM USA VOLLEYBALL AND FIVB
Betsi Metter and her partner Kelley Larsen made an improbable run and reached the quarterfinals of the FIVB Beach Volleyball U23 World Championships in Myslowice, Poland.
Despite losing in the qualification round and being placed on the reserve list, Metter and Larsen never lost hope of playing in the tournament's main draw. Thanks to a fateful delay from a Nigerian team stuck at customs, Larsen (Jamul, Calif.) and Metter (Phoenix, Ariz.) entered Wednesday's main draw with seconds to spare.
The duo quickly made use of their opportunity by downing the number-one seeded Jagoda Gruszczynska and Karolina Baran of Poland, 25-23, 21-12, in a Pool A match. In the pair's second match of the day, Larsen-Metter knocked off Finland's Taru Lahti and Anniina Parkkinen 21-16, 21-10 to advance to the next round.
Tabbed the "lucky losers" of the tournament, the pair defeated Puerto Rico's No. 25 pair of Gabriela Roman and Lina Bernier 21-10, 21-10 in their first match on Thursday, before upending No. 12 Bakhtygul Samalikova and Alexandra Varassova of Kazakhstan 21-12, 21-15 to close out the day.
Finishing up pool play, the twosome continued their dominance at the U23 Worlds after they defeated No. 24 Viktoryia Shalayeuskaya and Siakretava Viktoryia of Belarus 21-14, 21-17 to run their record to 5-0 and advance directly to the second round of the knockout stage.
In that stage, Metter/Larsen met No. 21 Giada Benazzi and Agata Zuccarelli of Italy, dispatching the pair 14-21, 21-18, 15-13 to reach the quarterfinals and a rematch with Finland's Lahti and Parkkinen. The USA's incredible run through the tournament ended there, as Lahti-Parkkinen prevented an all-American semifinal by knocking out Metter and Larsen 20-22, 21-12, 15-10.
Metter and Larsen will now watch as fellow Americans Lara Dykstra and Jace Pardon continue their quest for the Championship on Saturday.