Kerri Walsh Jennings and April Ross beat Switzerland’s Isabelle Forrer and Anouk Verge-Depre 21-13, 24-22, 15-12 to win their pool and advance to the Round of 16.
The U.S. women appeared dominant in the first set but the Swiss rallied back in the second. The teams tied at 4-4. Switzerland took the lead at 5-4 after a successful block against April Ross. The point lead switched again in the U.S. women’s favor after a successful block by Ross. Forrer/Verge-Depre took a single point lead going 11-10 into the first technical timeout of the second set. The Swiss managed to pull away to win the second set 24-22, forcing a decisive third set. The loss marked Walsh Jennings’ second dropped set of her Olympic career.
Forrer/Verge-Depre led into the third set but Walsh Jennings/Ross responded to tie at 4-4. A long serve from Ross gave the Swiss a one-point lead and a cutshot that Ross was unable to save put the score at 6-4 in Forrer/Verge-Depre’s favor. A successful block from Walsh Jennings tied the score again at 6-6. The U.S. took the lead at 8-7 . After a hard line shot from the Swiss, followed by an ace, Forrer/Verge-Depre took the lead at 8-9. After a medical timeout, the U.S. women bounced back, tying at 10-10 before pulling away by two points. The U.S. women took the third and final set to win 21-13, 22-24, 15-12.
The U.S. women will automatically advance to the Round of 16 while the Swiss women will have to wait for pool play to end to find out if they qualify for a last chance lucky loser match. Walsh Jennings/Ross went 3-0 in group play, beating out Australia, China and Switzerland. The elimination round will begin Aug. 12 at 10:00 a.m. ET.