The sun beat down on a full stadium at the AVP Hermosa Beach Open as Hawaiian brothers Taylor and Trevor Crabb battled for the title Sunday afternoon.
Second-seeded Trevor Crabb and partner Theo Brunner prevailed over Taylor Crabb and partner Taylor Sander, who were seeded third, in three games, 19-21, 21-13, 15-10.
Taylor and Trevor have competed against each other before, but Sunday was the elder Crabb’s turn to triumph. At 6 feet 8 and 6-5, respectively, Crabb and Brunner hit their stride in the second set by imposing unbreakable blocks.
Taylor, who was the shortest player in the final match at 6-foot, and 6-4 Sander sent the ball to open spots in the hot sand early as if part of a calculated missile launch, but in the end they struggled to get over or around the imposing blocks of the eventual champions.
Trevor Crabb placed fourth at the 2019 beach volleyball world championships alongside Olympian Tri Bourne, who has been to two world championships, placing fourth in 2015 and 17th in 2019.
Despite the excitement of the sibling rivalry, the Hermosa Beach Open final match was no more tense than the semifinal between Crabb and Sander and top-seeded Olympians Chaim Schalk and Bourne earlier in the day.
Schalk, who won the tournament last year with Brunner, and Bourne took the first set 21-17. Crabb and Sander proved unstoppable from there, winning the next two games, 22-20,15-11.
“Feels like we just won the final,” Sander said to himself as he walked off the court after defeating Schalk and Bourne.