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Hovland, Dodd Win Pro Finals

October 12, 1987|JEFFREY PARENTI

SAN DIEGO — First the rain came, then the storm hit as the finals of the Jose Cuervo Pro Beach Volleyball Series World Championships Sunday at Mariner's Point were clouded in controversy and ended with Mike Dodd and Tim Hovland taking first place in a one-game final.

Dodd and Hovland, the second-seeded team, took home first-place prize money of $9,400 for being the only team without a loss in the double-elimination tournament. They defeated Sinjin Smith and Randy Stoklos, 15-10, in the finals of the winner's bracket before rain halted play.

At 3:20 p.m., 2 hours 10 minutes after the winners' bracket final, the eight players remaining in the tournament--four in the winners' bracket and four in the losers' bracket--voted 5-3 not to continue playing, prematurely ending a season of 26 tournaments that began in March.

Smith and Stoklos, the top-seeded team, which had won 16 of the tournaments during the series, were awarded second-place money of $4,700. The two other teams, Brent Frohoff-Scott Ayakatubby and John Stevenson-Pat Powers, who would have played in the consolation semifinals, will split the combined third and fourth-place money of $5,700.

The controversy is whether Dodd-Hovland will wear the title World Champions for another year. And there is also a question of how Grand Prix points, for the leading money winners on the tour, will be awarded.

A $25,000 bonus rides on that decision. Smith and Stoklos were tied in points and Dodd close behind, though an outright victory by Dodds in the tournament would have given him the points championship. The final decision will be made when the Assn. of Volleyball Professionals meet Wednesday in Century City.

Hovland and Dodd, however, feel that because they won that one game, they are the "World Champions."

"Very much so," Hovland said. "I would have loved to finish this tournament. I went in (to that game) thinking whoever wins this wins the tournament."

Said Smith, a member of the Executive Board of the AVP: "We really didn't discuss their being world champions. In my mind I thought regardless of how hard it rained we had to finish. The way the season has been, there have been teams come through the loser's bracket to win."

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