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Rio Olympics: Phil Dalhausser, Nick Lucena advance in beach volleyball

USA's Phil Dalhausser, left, and Nicholas Lucena celebrate

USA's Phil Dalhausser, left, and Nicholas Lucena celebrate after winning the first set during the men's beach volleyball qualifying match between USA and Italy at the Beach Volley Arena in Rio de Janeiro on Aug. 11, 2016, for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Credit: AFP/Getty Images / LEON NEAL

Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena are through to the knockout stage of the Olympic beach volleyball tournament after an extra long victory over Italy.

The Americans won 21-13, 21-17, 24-22 on Thursday night to finish unbeaten in group play. They’ll wait for the drawing of lots to find out their opponent in the round of 16.

The third set in a beach volleyball match is supposed to be up to 15 — but the team has to win by 2. The Italians fought off a half-dozen match points before the Americans nailed it down.

That left the United States with one men’s and one women’s team playing for a medal. April Ross and three-time gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings wrapped up pool play with a perfect record on Wednesday.

New York Sports