Lausanne, Switzerland, December 14, 2016 – NBC Sports reported on Tuesday that Jake Gibb and Casey Patterson have been forced to terminate their beach volleyball partnership after Patterson moved.
The two were previously neighbors in Huntington Beach, Calif., and had been volleyball partners since 2013. Their wives and children also used to hang out together, according to the report
“It’s about a two-hour drive north, at best,” Gibb told NBC. “We could have tried to make it work, but it just didn’t make sense.”
They finished last in their pool at the 2016 Olympics and by the end of the 2016 international season, Tri Bourne and John Hyden had passed Gibb and Patterson in the standings as the second-best U.S. team, behind Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena.
“We needed something to change to ignite the fire again,” Patterson said.
Patterson reached out to 2008 Olympic gold medalist Dalhausser. Dalhausser listened, but ultimately remained with Lucena. Patterson also approached Tri Bourne, Theo Brunner and Ryan Doherty. Once the partnership carousel stopped spinning, Patterson aligned with 31-year-old Brunner.
“It’s like the ‘Real Housewives of Beach Volleyball,’ ” Patterson joked. “There’s so much drama when guys are trying to find a new partner.”
Gibb, who celebrates his 41st birthday the day before the start of February’s Fort Lauderdale Major, has joined forces with Hawaii’s Taylor Crabb. Together with brother Trevor, the 24-year-old was one of the rising stars on the sand last year. Taylor was named the 2016 AVP Defender of the Year.
“[Crabb] is incredibly gifted,” Gibb said. “His beach IQ is through the roof.”
Trevor, the older Crabb brother at 27, has hooked up with the legendary Sean Rosenthal, the 36-year-old former teammate of Phil Dalhausser, who enjoyed a stunning 2014 season that saw him win five medals from 10 events, including three golds.
Gibb and Patterson are expected to debut with their new partners on Feb. 7 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
U.S. beach volleyball teams (and year established)
Tri Bourne/John Hyden (2013)
Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena (2015)
Ryan Doherty/John Mayer (2015)
Theo Brunner/Casey Patterson (New)
Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb (New)
Trevor Crabb/Sean Rosenthal (New)