Waves' Summer Ross Wins AVP Cincinnati Open
AVP Cincinnati Open brings out best in Summer Ross.
Sep 4, 2013
MALIBU, Calif. – Summer Ross, a key member of the Waves’ inaugural women’s sand volleyball team, made a big splash in the AVP tour over the weekend, winning the Cincinnati Open. Ross and partner Emily Day defeated three-time Olympic champion Kerri Walsh Jennings and her partner Whitney Pavlik not once, but twice en route to the tournament title.
Ross (Carlsbad, Calif./Carlsbad Seaside Academy) transferred to Pepperdine in January of 2012 after playing a season of indoor volleyball at Washington. She instantly made her mark during the sports’ first-ever season, bringing home both the AVCA Collegiate Sand Volleyball National Team and Individual championships.
Pepperdine went undefeated during its inaugural season, with Ross and Caitlin Racich (Santa Barbara, Calif./Dos Pueblos HS) holding down the No. 1 spot in the lineup with a 35-3 record. After leading the Waves to the team title with dual wins over the College of Charleston and Long Beach State, the duo won the individual title as well after coming back from an 11-15 deficit in the third set vs. the 49ers’ Caitlin Ledoux and Tara Roenicke.
Ross opted to turn pro after a single season in Malibu. Says Ross of her decision in an ESPNW article: “It was a really hard decision to leave Pepperdine because I had some great teammates there and I love the program. But if I wanted to have a chance for [the] 2016 [Olympics], I think this was what I had to do."
Ross and Day entered the AVP Cincinnati Open as the No. 14 seed and faced with a qualification match to earn a spot in the main draw. After topping Dana Fiume and Hilary Pavels 21-14, 21-16 in 33 minutes, the pair went up against third-seeded Jennifer Fopma and Brooke Sweat. Again Ross and Day took the challenge head-on and won in straight sets.
No. 11 seeded Olayo Pazo and Kendra Van Zwieten fell victim in the next round to set up the first meeting between Ross/Day and Walsh Jennings/Pavlik. Ross and Day prevailed 21-19, 21-15 in a 35 minute contest.
The pair lost their first set of the tournament in the semifinals, but still advanced with an 18-21, 21-19, 21-12 triumph over Angie Akers and Priscilla Lima setting up a rematch against Walsh Jennings and Pavlik in the finals.
Walsh Jennings and Pavlik fought their way out of the losers bracket with an upset win over top seeded Jennifer Kessy and April Ross, the 2012 Olympic Silver medalists.
With momentum on their side, Ross and Day defeated the high-profile pair yet again, 21-15, 21-11.
Next up on the AVP Tour is the Atlantic City Open on Sept. 6-8. For more information, visit the AVP website.