Destinee Hooker had 23 points and Jordan Larson added 18 for the top-ranked Americans, who won 25-18, 25-17, 22-25, 25-21 to improve to 2-0 in pool play at Earls Court.
“I call her the glue,” coach Hugh McCutcheon said. “She holds this team together.”
Brazil has lost five straight international matches to the U.S. The teams are 21-21 all time.
The U.S. pulled away in the second set with a seven-point run, capped by Tom’s spike.
Brazil twice held off the U.S. at set point and had some momentum, until Hooker’s kill ended it.
Brazil went up 8-3 early in the third, but the Americans rallied for a 16-15 lead on Christa Harmotto’s block. It was back and fourth until Harmotto’s attempt to return Thaisa Menezes’ spike went awry.
The result left the Brazilians at 1-1 in the pool.
“Now is not the time to think about the game but to think about the next steps,” Brazilian captain Fabiana Oliveira said, adding the match might be a preview of the final.
China, Serbia, Turkey and South Korea are in the six-team pool with the U.S. and Brazil. Japan, Russia, Italy, Algeria, the Dominican Republic and Britain make up the other pool. The top four teams from each group advance to the quarterfinals.
The U.S. has been playing well under McCutcheon, who coached the U.S. men to the gold medal in Beijing before shifting to the women’s team. The American women have never won an Olympic gold medal in volleyball. The sport joined the Olympics in 1964.
Basketball: Parker leads way as U.S. women crush Angola
Candace Parker had 14 points and 12 rebounds to lead the U.S. women to a 90-38 rout of Angola on Monday night in the Olympic basketball tournament.