On Saturday, volleyballs flew all day on the sands of Riis Park as contestant’s fought for the fabled winner’s sweatshirts in the Rockaway Beach Volleyball League playoffs.
The weather was an ideal 81 degrees, sunny and virtually windless and the quality of play seemed to match the quality of the playing conditions. Eight different division champions were crowned by day’s end and the mood was both festive and bittersweet as the 2010 season ended.
The joy of another terrific year was offset by the sadness that many friends would go their separate ways over the next 10 months, not seeing each other quite so regularly anymore. More than a few people were weepy!
Commissioner Patty Moule outdid herself again although she selflessly deflected credit to her committee of Rocky, Steve, Denise, John and Joe for a job well done. Thank you all for making the season a great success and making Saturday one of the RBVL’s most spectacular playoff days ever. As always, the exciting games, food (Kudos to Beach Bagel for the delicious sandwiches and wraps) and music (More kudos to DJ Tommy Tunes who rocked the finals) help but you are what make the day so special. Your camaraderie and friendship elevate the RBVL to heights no other league enjoys.
The Ocean division produced one of the bigger surprises of the day when the Flip Cup All Stars beat longtime powerhouse, Freedhand’s, 3-1 in their first round battle. Sica and Co. picked up every ball and played a near-perfect match with nary an unforced error. Even old man John had a couple of blocks at the net. Unfortunately, they could not keep up the pace and lost in the finals to the Sugar Bowl. That gave the Bowlers back-to-back titles in the league’s top division. This time they did it without star hitter, Frank Ganun, who was in California attending a family wedding. At least that’s what he thought.
An investigation has disclosed that Mike Martin had a bogus invitation printed up just to get Frank out of NYC. It’s not that the team couldn’t use Frank’s playing ability but they could not take another year of Frank boasting that his blocking won them the title in 2009.
The Ocean Breeze Division was won by top seed, Fillmore Insurance, in convincing fashion. Andre and Jenna led the team to victory and it promises to be the first of many for the youngsters. After placing second in the Beach Division last year JG Electric moved up and took the Wave Championship on Saturday. Ocean’s 12 won the regular season title and took the playoffs as well in the Beach division. The Land Sharks made the playoffs but exited very quickly. That doesn’t mean they exited Riis Park quickly. Once again, they were among the last revelers to go home. Congrat-ulations to the Moroneys who saw their first grandchild born during the playoffs. Spike Moroney?
The Average Joes and Miley Home Improvement Posse battled for the top spot all season in the Boardwalk and Saturday was no different. This time the Posse emerged victorious to claim the title.
The Sun division was one of the only divisions to be a runaway with the Beach Bums torching all of their opponents. There was more of the same at the big dance as they claimed the championship. Look for them to make some noise at a higher level next summer.
Sal’s Auto Sandstorm and the Comeback Cats won the Moon and Star divisions respectively, rounding out the eight new champions. Six #1 seeds and two #2 seeds ended up taking titles, making 2010 the year of the favorites.
The Volley Warriors want to thank the RBVL for having them as guests again this year. They all had a great time and will continue to work on their skills over the winter months. Thanks to Jay Butler and Noah Nicholson for their dedication and commitment. They were there every week teaching, helping, and encouraging the kids.
Kerry Hills are very grateful to Carmel O’Sullivan for her support. Unfortunately, the Kerry Hills crew cannot attend the party this year. Fortunately, it is because the team will be attending the wedding of one of their teammates. Congratulations to Rob LaPrice and Jen Mazzio! Keith Green had a lovely day interrupted by a semi-psychotic homeless man screaming “Cracker” at him for no apparent reason. Keith may have to drop him from his roster next year.
The chicken cutlet hero’s seemed to be a big hit with everyone including the gypsies who stuffed their bags with as many slices as they could fit. After all, isn’t that what gypsies do? Bobby Fash wore his original league uniform, dislocated his left big toe, drove himself to the hospital and then returned to the beach for the rest of the day. That is the stuff of an MVP. Fed Ex Dan and his friend Susan had their coldest beer of the summer, compliments of Commissioner Patty and they both spoke glowingly of the wonderful things the RBVL does for the local community. Patty and Denise and the men of the RBVL committee would like to say, “Thank you” to all the well-wishers for their kind words, hugs and kisses on Saturday and all along the way. And thanks to all who helped out on “Playoff Saturday”, reffing, tracking scores, updating the scoreboard and basically doing whatever was necessary to make the day run smoothly. And special thanks go to two young ladies who worked all year with their moms and did an amazing amount of work, Caroline Brunner and Lauren Moule. Well done!
Everyone in Rockaway is getting a bit verklempt just thinking about the season coming to end. Alice’s daughter EJ spoke eloquently last year when she said, “What the RBVL does for Rockaway is magical.” Just because the league is officially over doesn’t mean that the volleyball games must stop. It looks like the weekly Monday night pick-up games at Steve’s 127 Street Stadium will continue for several more weeks. We hope to see many of you on the beach if you are available.
This year’s annual RBVL awards party extravaganza will return to Jameson’s, which did a great job in hosting last year’s affair. And our very own Tommy Tunes will be spinning the music to insure you will hear the songs you love. In the past, many people have asked that the awards dinner be held right after the season and this year that’s the way it’s going to be.
August 20 is the big day. That’s the Friday after the playoffs. Mark it down on your calendars and make your plans accordingly. $50 will get you food, music and a 4 and half hour open bar. Space is limited so the party is “First come – first served.” Dress casual and wear your best Hawaiian shirt.
Just because the RBVL season is over doesn’t mean the fun and volleyball are done. You can have some fun this Tuesday (8-11 p.m.) if you take a trip into Bay Ridge to see your old friend Joe McGivney’s band, Gearth, Wind & Fireman at the Kettle Black. The singing party animals of the Rockaway Breakers are making their second trip in for the show after having so much fun that it hurt the first time around. You might see your executive board members out, letting their down, too.
And volleyball is not done either. You can play ball and help out a worthy cause at Peyton’s FUN Raiser: Beach Volleyball Tournament, which will be held on Saturday, August 28, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. rain or shine, at Bay 9 in Riis Park Beach (Beach 155 Street and the Boardwalk).
The benefit is for the son of Pat and Jacqueline Tansey from Robin Shapiro Island and it will be a fun, family-oriented event for all levels of play- competitive 4’s and recreational 6’s. Prepaid $50 donation (or $300 for team of 6) includes participation in the games, tank top, food and entertainment. A $60 donation is on the day of the event and it’s based on openings. Players MUST be age 14 and up.
Teams will be divided by their requested level of play. There may be separate divisions for the FDNY and NYPD, depending on demand.
Raffles and 50/50 tickets will be sold and prizes awarded at the tournament. A small volleyball clinic for children will be provided along with other favorite activities.
Children (under 12) are FREE (with a participating adult). Therefore, please be sure to register your children as well. The donation is $20 for nonplayer attendees. Bring your coolers, beach chairs, and sunscreen and have fun as you help raise money for a very worthy cause! DJ Tommy Tunes will provide the music. Flyers and entry forms will be available the next two weeks on the boardwalk. Check www. pathwaysforpeyton.org for forms and details.
As always, if you have any questions please call Patty at 917-613-0908. Be sure to call between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. Remember, Patty has a life outside of volleyball too. Or just check our website at www.rbvl.com. You’ll find the answers to most of your questions there, not to mention pretty pictures and funny stories. Kirby!
See you on the dance floor!