Two local sand teams qualify for JOs

San Marcos freshman Cassidy Drury-Pullen and Laguna Blanca's Laurel Kujan

San Marcos freshman Cassidy Drury-Pullen, right, and Laguna Blanca’s Laurel Kujan, left, earned silver in the 16s division.

On Sunday, May 18, 2014, West Beach hosted the AAU Santa Barbara Open for sand volleyball. This event served as a qualifying event for the Junior Olympics which will be held in Hermosa Beach, California on July 26-27. The Junior Olympics (JO’s) will be host to pairs from around the Country seeking to win the prestigious title of Junior Olympic medalist.

Local Anika Wilson (Junior, San Marcos High School) paired up with Veronica Sams (Junior, Oaks Christian) to compete in the 18’s division. Both athletes in this pairing are committed to Pepperdine University and will be on the university’s sand volleyball team. Wilson/Sams were silver medalists at this event and earned a bid to the JO’s. Also playing in the 18’s division were locals Clare Holehouse (Senior) and Isabel Bassi (Freshman). Both athletes attend San Marcos High School. Holehouse/Bassi took home the bronze medal after winning a hard fought semi-final.

Cassidy Drury-Pullen (Freshman, San Marcos) paired with Laurel Kujan (Laguna Blanca, 8th grade) to compete in the 16’s division. Drury-Pullen/Kujan fought their way to the finals, but lost to a strong team from San Diego. Drury-Pullen/Kujan also earned a bid to the prestigious Junior Olympics.

In other recent local sand volleyball news, Anika Wilson and Kirsten Kirsten Mead (of Northern Cal) won the gold at the Mother’s Day AAU Santa Monica Open. Wilson/Mead earned a bid to the Pan Pacific Championships. The Pan Pacific tournament, which is only for 18’s, rotates between Hawaii and California with each state sending 5 teams. This year it will be played in California at Hermosa Beach July 22.

For more information visit