April Ross
FIVB World Tour

World Beach Volleyball Championships broadcast schedule

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Olympic medalists April Ross and Phil Dalhausser lead eight U.S. pairs into the world beach volleyball championships on NBC Sports and Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA starting Friday.

All 74 center-court matches from Vienna will stream live on NBCSports.com/live, the NBC Sports app, OlympicChannel.com and the Olympic Channel app, including the medal matches Aug. 4 and 5. That’s in addition to broadcast coverage on NBC Sports and Olympic Channel.

Ross split from three-time Olympic champion Kerri Walsh Jennings three months ago, less than a year after taking bronze in Rio together. Walsh Jennings withdrew from worlds on Tuesday after dislocating her shoulder in a match last Saturday.

Ross, a 2009 World champion and 2012 Olympic silver medalist with Jennifer Kessy, is now paired with Rio Olympian Lauren Fendrick. They made the World Series of Beach Volleyball final earlier this month.

The other U.S. women’s pairs at worlds are Kelly Claes and Sara Hughes, Olympian Brooke Sweat and Summer Ross and 2008 Olympian Nicole Branagh and Emily Day.

Rio gold medalists Kira Walkenhorst and Laura Ludwig of Germany and top Brazilians Larissa and Talita headline the women’s field.

On the men’s side, the 2008 Olympic champion Dalhausser and Nick Lucena are medal contenders. They have won three of their last five events together, one season after being bounced in the Rio quarterfinals by eventual winners Alison and Bruno.

The other U.S. men’s teams each have one Olympian — Casey Patterson with Theo BrunnerJake Gibb with Taylor Crabb and John Hyden with Ryan Doherty.

MORE: April Ross discusses playing without Kerri Walsh Jennings

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Broadcast Schedule

Day Session Time (ET) Network
Friday, July 28 Pool Play 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Saturday, July 29 Pool Play 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Sunday, July 30 Pool Play 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Monday, July 31 Pool Play 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Monday, July 31 Pool Play 3-5 p.m. NBCSN
Tuesday, Aug. 1 Pool Play 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Tuesday, Aug. 1 Pool Play 3-5 p.m. NBCSN
Wednesday, Aug. 2 Playoffs 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Wednesday, Aug. 2 Playoffs 3-5 p.m. NBCSN
Thursday, Aug. 3 Playoffs 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Olympic Channel
Friday, Aug. 4 Playoffs 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Olympic Channel
Friday, Aug. 4 Playoffs 9-11 p.m. NBCSN
Saturday, Aug. 5 Playoffs 1 p.m. Olympic Channel
Saturday, Aug. 5 Women’s Final 2-3 p.m. NBC
Saturday, Aug. 5 Playoffs 9-11 p.m. NBCSN
Sunday, Aug. 6 Men’s Medal Matches 12:30 p.m. Olympic Channel
Monday, Aug. 7 Men’s Medal Matches 12-1 a.m. NBCSN

World champion wins doping case citing bodily fluids from boyfriend

AP
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LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — A world champion canoeist won a doping case Monday after persuading a tribunal that her positive test was caused by bodily fluid contamination from her boyfriend.

The International Canoe Federation (ICF) ended its investigation into 11-time world champion Laurence Vincent Lapointe, who tested positive for a steroid-like substance in July. She faced a four-year ban and could have missed her event’s Olympic debut at the Tokyo Games.

The Canadian canoe sprint racer and her lawyer detailed in a news program that laboratory analysis of hair from her then-boyfriend showed he was likely responsible for a tiny presence of ligandrol in her doping sample.

“The ICF has accepted Ms. Vincent Lapointe’s evidence which supports that she was the victim of third-party contamination,” the governing body said in a statement, clearing her to return to competition.

The legal debate is similar to tennis player Richard Gasquet’s 2009 acquittal in the “cocaine kiss” case. The Court of Arbitration for Sport accepted Gasquet’s defense that kissing a woman who had taken cocaine in a Miami nightclub, after he had withdrawn injured from a tournament, caused his positive test.

The 27-year-old Vincent Lapointe was provisionally suspended for almost six months and missed the 2019 World Championships, which was a key qualifying event for the Tokyo Olympics. American 17-year-old Nevin Harrison won the 200m world title in her absence.

She can still qualify for the Olympic debut of women’s canoe sprint events with victory at a World Cup event in May in Germany.

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MORE: Viral Olympic moments of 2010s decade

U.S. women’s soccer team begins Olympic qualifying, which should rest on one match

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The U.S. women’s soccer team has never been in danger in Olympic qualifying, but that doesn’t change this fact: It must win on Feb. 7 to reach the Tokyo Games.

The CONCACAF tournament begins Tuesday in Houston, where the world champion Americans face world No. 72 Haiti. The last two group games are against No. 68 Panama on Friday and No. 37 Costa Rica on Feb. 3. The top two nations from the group advance to Feb. 7 semifinals.

The U.S. roster, with 18 of its 20 players coming from the 2019 World Cup team, is here.

Since CONCACAF qualifies two nations to the Olympics, the semifinals are the deciding games.

Should the U.S. win its group, it would face the runner-up from the other group in a winner-goes-to-Tokyo match. The other group (world ranking):

Canada (8)
Mexico (37)
Jamaica (53)
St. Kitts and Nevis (127)

Chaos could result in the unlikely event that either the U.S. or Canada finishes second in its group, and the two North American powers play a semifinal.

The U.S. is undefeated in Olympic qualifying history, since the tournament format began in 2004 — 15-0 with a goal differential of 88-1 (not counting matches played once they’ve already clinched qualification). The lone goal allowed came in a group-stage match in 2008, when the U.S. was already assured a spot in the semifinals.

Still, the U.S. knows the feeling of one poor outing in an important match. In 2010, it lost to Mexico in a winner-to-the-World Cup match. The U.S. was forced to win a last-chance, home-and-home playoff against a UEFA team — Italy — for the last spot in the World Cup.

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