COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Oct. 17, 2022) – Chase Budinger and Troy Field captured their second Beach Pro Tour medal at the Maldives Challenge over the weekend, winning silver after a 21-17, 21-18 loss in the final to Qatar’s Ahmed Tijan Janko and Cherif Younousse (No. 7 in the world). Budinger/Field’s last FIVB medal was a silver in Rubavu in 2021.
Their medal was also an improvement for U.S. men’s beach teams overall, as noted by VolleyballWorld.com. It was the first medal at a top-tier beach event (four-star or higher, Challenge or higher) for a U.S. men’s team since Jake Gibb and Taylor Crabb won gold at the Chetumal four-star in November 2019.
Two of the other three U.S. men’s teams advanced out of qualifying to the main draw. Andy Benesh/Miles Partain won their pool to advance to the Round of 16, where they defeated Stankevicius/Knasas (LTU) in three sets. In the quarterfinals, they fell to eventual champions Cherif/Ahmed, 22-20, 22-20. They finished tied for fifth, marking their best finish as a team on the Beach Pro Tour, and the best finishes individually as well.
Logan Webber/Evan Cory defeated teammates Adam Roberts/Cody Caldwell, and then won their pool to advance to the Round of 16. But they also came up against Cherif/Ahmed and lost 21-15, 21-13. They finished tied for ninth, their best as a team on the Beach Pro Tour.
Eight teams competed in the Maldives for the U.S. women, with five of them starting off in qualifying. Of those five, three moved on to the main draw to join Emily Stockman/Megan Kraft and Sarah Schermerhorn/Corinne Quiggle: Deahna Kraft/Allie Wheeler; Jessica Gaffney/Savvy Simo; and Zana Muno/Julia Scoles.
Stockman/Kraft continued their strong run with a fourth-place finish. It’s their sixth top-10 finish this year on the Beach Pro Tour, and their highest finish yet. They won their pool and moved through the Round of 16 and quarterfinals before dropping a close three-set match to eventual champions Lahti/Ahtiainen (FIN) in the semifinals. In the bronze-medal match, another Finnish team (Parkkinen/Sinisalo), defeated them 21-18, 20-22, 15-13.
Schermerhorn/Quiggle finished tied for fifth; Gaffney/Simo and Kraft/Wheeler were both tied for ninth; Muno/Scoles tied for 17th; Harward/Hodel and Slabakova/Horton were 25th; and Race/Gebhard were 33rd.
Ten U.S. pairs will compete this weekend in the first of two BPT Challenge events in Dubai. The event runs Oct. 22-25.
Chase Budinger/Troy Field
Logan Webber/Evan Cory
Taylor Crabb/Paul Lotman
Andy Benesh/Miles Partain
Xolani Hodel/Hailey Harward
Allie Wheeler/Deahna Kraft
Savvy Simo/Jessica Gaffney
Katie Horton/Julia Scoles
Jade Race/Violeta Slabakova
Molly Turner/Maddie Anderson