Canadians reach final at world junior beach volleyball championships

ANYALA, Turkey – Garrett May and Sam Schachter, both of Toronto, strung together three victories on Saturday to advance to the gold medal final at the world junior beach volleyball championships.

May and Schachter (in photo), seeded 18th, defeated 13th seeds Helmut Moser and Robert Seidl of Austria 21-23, 21-9, 15-10 in the round of 16, took down 10th seeds Evan Barry and Tony Ciarelli of the U.S., 21-18, 19-21, 15-13 in the quarterfinal and 21st seeds Peter Eglseer and Felix Koraimann of Austria 21-19, 21-17 in the semis.

“We really stuck together through this and battled hard,” said May, 18. “It’s really great to get this far but we are not done. We really want that gold medal.”

Their quarterfinal victory over the Americans lasted 67 minutes, the second longest match of the tournament. The Canadians overcame a 4-7 deficit in the third set. In that set, Schachter was forced to call a medical time out as the heat took its toll.

“Three big matches in the sun was a big physical challenge today,” said Schachter, 20. “We really needed to manage ourselves in the heat and keep hydrated. But we fought through a lot of adversity. That first match today was a big one as well. We had to make a strong rally to win that match and that gave us a lot of confidence.”

This is the second world championship medal match for May this season. Last month he placed fourth at the world youth championships with Nick del Bianco of Surrey, B.C.,

In Sunday’s final, the Canadians face the number-two seeds Alvaro Filho and Vitor Felipe of Brazil. They defeated Andrey Bolgov and Ruslan Bykanov of Russia, the 23rd seeds, in the other semi 21-19, 21-17. They have not lost a set in six matches.

Brazil is a powerhouse in the sport but we are not going to change our game,” said May. “I think if we stick to our game plan we can win.”