USC Beach Volleyball All-American Terese Cannon Earns First AVP Pro Series Crown at Hermosa Open
HERMOSA BEACH, Calif. – USC beach volleyball All-American Terese Cannon (Pittsford, N.Y.) and partner Sarah Sponcil claimed their first-career AVP titles as winners of the AVP Pro Series Hermosa Beach Open on Sunday, July 10.
As the top-seeded pair, Cannon and Sponcil went 5-0 and dropped just two sets all weekend. The duo defeated the second-seeded team of Kelly Cheng and Betsi Flint, 21-12, 21-15, in the championship match. Cheng—formerly Kelly Claes—is a three-time USC All-American and won the New Orleans Open with Flint several weeks ago.
Cannon's victory represents the 62nd individual Trojan AVP women's win; the 48th event won by at least one female USC athlete. Between Cannon, Cheng, and USC All-Americans April Ross, and Sara Hughes, at least one USC player has won 34 of the last 54 AVP events since the 2014 season. It is only the third time that a USC alumna and UCLA alumna have teamed up to win an AVP event. Previously, Ross and Lauren Fendrick did it twice (2015 Huntington Beach Championships, 2017 New York City Open).
FIRST TIME AVP CHAMPIONS: Sarah Sponcil and Terese Cannon! 🏆🏆🏆
— AVP (@avpbeach) July 10, 2022
Cannon-Sponcil opened the weekend by taking down the 16th-seeded pair of Heather Friesen and Agnieszka Pregowska, 21-12, 21-14, in the opening round. They then had to fight off a stiff test from eighth-seeded Jessica Gaffney and Molly Turner in the second round to advance on a 21-19, 21-23, 15-9 win. Cannon and Sponcil needed just two sets to get by the fifth-seeded duo of Fendrick and Zana Muno, 21-12, 21-18, to move into the semifinals. It took another marathon three-set match, but Cannon-Sponcil claimed a 24-22, 11-21, 17-15 win over the third-seeded tandem of Hughes and Kelley Kolinske.
Cannon, Cheng, and Hughes were three of eight USC beach volleyball alumnae to play in the Hermosa Beach Open, which accounted for a quarter of the 32 athletes in the tourney. Seeded seventh, All-American Julia Scoles and partner Geena Urango reached the semifinals by battling through the contender's bracket but were eliminated by Cheng and Flint in a three-set decision, 21-17, 17-21, 16-14. Scoles-Urango also lost to Cheng-Flint in the second round in another three-setter. As the 10th-seeded duo, USC All-Americans Falyn Fonoimoana and Hailey Harward won one match in the contender's bracket. All-American Allie Wheeler teamed with Deahna Kraft as the 12th-seeded team.
The AVP will host two more events in July. Next up, the Atlantic City Open—part of the AVP Tour Series—takes place July 23-24; and then the Pro Series Fort Lauderdale Open is set for July 29-31.
Under third-year head coach Dain Blanton, the USC beach volleyball team captured its fourth NCAA Championship (fifth national title) and fourth Pac-12 crown in 2022. The Women of Troy finished the year ranked No. 1 and had a record of 37-1 with a 36-match win streak intact at the end. USC added four AVCA All-Americans to its history books with the four-time selection of Tina Graudina as well as the third-career honor for Sammy Slater. Graudina was named the Pac-12's Player of the Year a third time and earned Pac-12 and AVCA Pair of the Year honors with partner Hailey Harward, who was also tabbed an AVCA All-American along with sophomore Megan Kraft.
For more information on the USC beach volleyball team, a complete schedule, and results, please visit USCTrojans.com/beach. Fans of the Women of Troy can follow the team on Instagram and on Twitter @USCBeach.