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April Ross and Alix Klineman of Team USA celebrate after the play against Team Cuba during the Women's Round of 16 beach volleyball on day ten of the Tokyo Games. Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

When Alix Klineman switched from indoor to beach volleyball in 2017, April Ross had already won two Olympic medals on the sand. In 2018, the two players teamed up, and they've been on a success streak ever since.

The big picture: Their partnership is one driven by past failures and bound by future aspirations. After being left off Olympic rosters for indoor volleyball year after year, Klineman's tenacity matched with her partner's prowess ultimately led to the realization of her Olympic dreams.

  • Entering the Tokyo Games, Ross, who already had a silver and bronze medal, hoped Klineman would help her realize her own Olympic dream of winning the gold. Those dreams came true on Friday, when the pair won the gold against Australia.
How it happened:
  • Prelim - Pool B
    • Klineman and Ross beat China in their first match.
    • The U.S. team defeated Spain in its second matchup.
    • Klineman and Ross won their match against the Netherlands.
  • Round of 16: Klineman and Ross beat Cuba.
  • Quarterfinals: The U.S. team defeated Germany.
  • Semifinals - Klineman and Ross beat Switzerland.
  • Gold medal match: The U.S. team defeated Australia to win Olympic gold.
What they're saying:
  • "I am just so thankful I chose [Klineman] as a partner when she was brand new," Ross told Fansided. "She was searching for a partner and now I feel like she's one of the best players in the world."
  • "You know I love competing and I'm very determined and I feel like ultimately my will was stronger than anything else, so that's why I feel like I'm here," Klineman recently said, per E! News.
Tokyo medal:
  • 🥇
Previous Olympic medals...

2012 London Games

  • 🥈- Ross took home silver with Jennifer Kessy

2016 Rio Games

  • 🥉- Ross won bronze with Kerri Walsh Jennings

Editor's note: This story has been updated throughout.

Go deeper

Sep 5, 2021 - Sports

U.S. beats China for Paralympics gold in women's sitting volleyball

Team USA's Alexis Shifflett serves the ball during the Tokyo Paralympic Games women's sitting volleyball pool match against Rwanda in Chiba, Japan, on Aug. 28. Photo: Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP via Getty Images

Team USA won gold in the Tokyo Paralympic Games women's sitting volleyball final on Sunday morning local time.

The big picture: The defending champions beat China 3-1 in the final. After the event was added to the Paralympics in 2004, China won the first three golds. The Americans' win took the U.S. Paralympic medals tally to 103, including 36 golds.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with details of China's previous wins in the event.

12 hours ago - Health

FDA advisory panel recommends Pfizer boosters for those 65 and older

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at the Key Biscayne Community Center on Aug. 24, 2021. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday overwhelmingly voted against recommending Pfizer vaccine booster shots for younger Americans, but unanimously recommended approving the third shots for individuals 65 and older, as well as those at high-risk of severe COVID-19.

Why it matters: While the votes are non-binding, and the FDA must still make a final decision, Friday's move pours cold water on the Biden administration's plan to begin administering boosters to most individuals who received the Pfizer vaccine later this month.

12 hours ago - World

France recalls ambassadors from U.S. and Australia over submarine deal

Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L), French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian (C), and French ambassador to the U.S. Philippe Etienne. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

France has taken the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassadors to the U.S. and Australia after both countries blindsided their French allies with a new military pact and submarine contract, the French Foreign Ministry announced on Friday.

The backstory: While sealing an agreement with the U.S. and U.K. to acquire nuclear submarines, Australia ripped up an existing $90 billion submarine deal with France. That led senior French officials to accuse the U.S. of a "stab in the back."