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Silver in the sand

It was an evening of both joy and disappointment at the London Olympics on Aug. 8 as former Trojans Jennifer Kessy and April Ross took home silver medals following a loss in the beach volleyball final to fellow Americans and three-peat champions Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor.

Kessy and Ross were playing in their first Olympics against the seasoned sand-masters, who their third consecutive Olympic gold medal and 21st straight Olympic match. Kessy and Ross just missed qualifying for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Though they finished third among the American teams, countries are allowed a maximum of two beach volleyball teams in Olympic play.

The first set at Horse Guards Parade was tied at 13-13 before Walsh Jennings and May-Treanor scored six of the next seven points to open up an insurmountable 19-14 lead. In the second set, Kessy and Ross held a 9-8 advantage before their counterparts ran off three points in a row and were never threatened the rest of the way.

Kessy recorded 14 kills, two blocks and two aces while Ross had eight kills.

Kessy was a two-time All-Conference performer at USC. Ross was a two-time All-American who led the Women of Troy to the 2002 and 2003 NCAA titles. Kessy and Ross have combined for 21 pro tournament victories.

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Silver in the sand

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