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Duo adds one more AVP title

Times Staff Writer

Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh are focused on something other than the Assn. of Volleyball Professionals tour right now, so it would have been easy for them to have a letdown at the Long Beach Open.

No such luck for the rest of the AVP teams as May-Treanor and Walsh, making their first U.S. appearance in a month and their last one for another month, dominated at Marina Green Park and thumped Tyra Turner and Rachel Wacholder, 21-10, 21-14, Saturday in the final.

It was the ninth consecutive AVP victory for May-Treanor and Walsh, but held little present meaning for the pair, who are primarily focused on stockpiling Olympic qualifying points.

Those aren’t available in AVP events, which explains their hurry in bolting Long Beach after the final so they could catch a plane bound for Switzerland. There, they will play the world championships this week in Gstaad.

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Teams have until July 2008 to earn points, but May-Treanor and Walsh said they are determined to accumulate enough points so that they are qualified before the end of this year.

“Our main goal this year is qualifying for the Olympics,” May-Treanor said. “We want to qualify this year so we can pace ourselves going into the Olympics. We don’t want to be traveling back and forth overseas right before the Olympics.”

May-Treanor and Walsh made it through the tournament without giving up more than 14 points in a game as they won for the 75th time as a team.

It was a letdown for Wacholder and Turner, who advanced to the final unbeaten, but could not sustain that level of play against the top team in the world.

“We had a great week,” Wacholder said. “We played well to get here, but the final wasn’t our best. I’m a little embarrassed.”

In men’s play, top-seeded Jake Gibb and Sean Rosenthal reached the semifinals unbeaten, as did second-seeded Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser.

Third-seeded Mike Lambert and Stein Metzger will play No. 10 Nick Lucena and Mark Williams today at 8:45 a.m. with a spot in the semifinals on the line. Fourth-seeded John Hyden and Brad Keenan will play No. 9 Jeff Nygaard and Jason Ring with the fourth semifinal berth on the line. The final is at 1 p.m.

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peter.yoon@latimes.com


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