COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Jan. 2, 2017) – The new U.S. women’s beach volleyball team of April Ross and Alix Klineman opened the new year by winning the U.S. country quota playoff on Tuesday at the Dela Beach Open in The Hague, Netherlands.

The Dela Open is a four-star event on the FIVB World Tour and is being played indoors.

Ross and Klineman advance to Wednesday’s qualification bracket where they will play Netherlands’ Emi van Driel and Raïsa Schoon in the first round.

Ross and Klineman announced their partnership on Dec. 1. They also announced that Jen Kessy, Ross’s longtime partner with whom she won the 2012 Olympic silver medal, will be their coach.

“I think (Klineman) has unlimited potential,” Ross said. “Her work ethic is amazing. Her coachability is top-notch. She is super smart. She has everything she needs to become one of the best players in the world.”

In the first match of Tuesday’s country quota, Klineman and Ross beat Betsi Flint and Kelley Larsen, 21-16, 21-13. In the second match, Klineman/Ross defeated Brittany Hochevar and Emily Day, 15-21, 21-18, 15-8.

Three other U.S. women’s teams will compete in the main draw, which begins Wednesday: Brooke Sweat and Summer Ross, Lauren Fendrick and Karissa Cook along with Kelly Claes and Sara Hughes.

Qualification for the men’s tournament will also begin on Wednesday. The United States’ Reid Priddy and Jeremy Casebeer will take on Bill Kolinske and Miles Evans in the first round. Trevor Crabb and Sean Rosenthal will play Grant Goldschmidt and Leo Williams of South Africa in the first round of qualifying.

Other U.S. men’s teams competing in the main draw are Billy Allen and Ryan Doherty along with Casey Patterson and Stafford Slick.

Medal matches are scheduled for Jan. 6.