Todd-Phil partnership ends an incredible 7-year run

Todd Rogers, left, and Phil Dalhausser, right, pictured here at the 2010 Santa Barbara AVP tournament, will not play together in 2013. (Presidio Sports Photo)

Phil Dalhausser has made it official. The 6-9 ?Thin Beast? ended his partnership with Todd Rogers and is teaming up with Sean Rosenthal for the 2013 season and possibly beyond.

Dalhausser made the announcement Monday on the internet volleyball radio show, The Net Live. ?It?s official, I?m playing with Rosie,? he said on the online broadcast.

The break up of the Dalhausser-Rogers combo ends one of the most successful and dominant beach volleyball partnerships of all-time. Together since 2006, the East Beach-based team?s accomplishments include a FIVB World Championship in 2007, an Olympic gold medal in 2008, two Olympic Games appearances, a FIVB World Tour Championship, nine FIVB World Tour Grand Slam events, 23 FIVB tournament titles, four AVP Tour Championships, and 43 AVP tournament titles. They hold the FIVB World Tour record of consecutive match wins with 40 and have earned more than $1.5 million in prize money.

Phil Dalhausser, center, made a change in partners with the 2016 Olympics in mind.

?Playing with Phil was a blast,? Rogers told Presidio Sports. ?We had a great run ? one of the better ones in history.?

With Rogers, 38, deciding to cut back on playing internationally, Dalhausser was looking for a new partner to make a run at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Dalhausser said his choice came down to Rosenthal and Nick Lucena, whom he played with before Rogers.

He admitted it was a tough decision but he picked Rosenthal because it gives him the chance to play on the right side of the court.

?… I was tired playing on the left side, so I went with Rosie,? he said.

Dalhausser noted that Rosenthal said he was ?100 percent? behind the new partnership.

Both Dalhausser and Rosenthal are both 32.

Rosenthal is ending his seven year partnership with Jake Gibb, who is 36. They played in two Olympics and this summer won the FIVB World Tour title. On home sand two weeks ago, they won the AVP Championship at Santa Barbara?s West Beach.

On Todd?s reaction to the split, Dalhausser said, ?He?s a smart guy ? he?s ?The Professor.? He saw it coming. We didn?t have a great year. At some point, teams reach their peak and have no where else to go and trickle down on the other side of the peak, and that?s where we were at in the process. Losing sucks and I felt like making the change.?

Dalhausser-Rogers set the bar very high for themselves. They won only two events on the FIVB World Tour in 2012, which, for a lot of teams, would be considered a good season.
?We had some pretty good years,? Dalhausser said.

He said there is ?no bitterness at all? between the two of them.

Rogers said the Dalhausser-Rosenthal pairing should be a good one.

?They are great athletically on paper and I?m sure they will do well. Phil will play the right side, probably, and it is a challenge I know he has been looking at,? Rogers said.

As for his future partner, Rogers said he?s keeping that decision to himself at this time. His 2013 plans include playing in all the domestic events and some international tournaments, depending on the partner.