2017-06-02 / Sports

RBVL Plays for Keeps

By Joe McGivney

The Rockaway Beach Volleyball League kicked off the 2017 regular season Wednesday night at Riis Park and opening day was a smash hit. The weather was cool with a moderate hint of a zephyr wind augmented by a southern sirocco breeze but quite enjoyable and very playable.

The RBVL opened 2017 with 76 teams and 10 divisions of different levels of play. Teams will battle on the beach every Wednesday after the long cold off-season. The 2017 season will feature some new team names and several new sponsors. Welcome to all and to any new players as well. The RBVL is happy to have you onboard. We’ll see you at Riis Park every Wednesday until Aug. 12. Only nine teams out of 76 did not get even a single win in their first match. (You know who you are.) That means nine teams are leading their divisions with 5-0 records – Eh-Stay, JG Electric, Pico, Notorious D.I.G.'s, Wharf Rats, Newtown Sharks, Rathbones, BILLY MACS and DysFUNctional. Mad ups, tons of spiked balls and sick blocks were all reported to league writers but did any neutral third parties actually witness this wonderment?

You may have noticed some changes with 2017 RBVL committee members. Patty has stepped aside and handed the reigns over to our new president Steve. Although she is not handling the day to day operations as president she is still an important part of our RBVL committee. We would like to thank Patty for all she has done expanding and maintaining the RBVL for the last 16 years as president and look forward to talking about things other than volleyball with her. Rocky has officially retired from the RBVL committee after more than 20 years. He will continue to play with his team on Casino Auto Body so if you see him on the beach thank him for all he has done for the league but don’t call him or bother him with your RBVL concerns. The committee would like to thank Rocky for all he has done throughout the years. And Casino Auto Body would like to thank him for finally returning to his job as dominant big man full time. Casino defeated The Cabana, Long Beach three games to two, with standout performances by the deft passing and setting of Lauren Ganun and Brianna Johnston. But RBVL legend Rocky was the real story, spiking and blocking with his Willis Reed knees. Emergency girl, Alana McCarthy, was sorely missed and could have been used in game one when Casino only had five players. Can Casino handle the loss of both McCarthy girls? Stand by.

The Cape Cod Irish Villagers got their season off to a good start with a 3-2 win over Odd Couples. Newcomer Emma doesn't just have her sights set on the Rookie of the Year award, but team MVP as well. "Quick Shot" Shane showed no mercy. If he's ready to serve, he's going to do so, women and children be damned. Pat was impressed by the performance of his favorite player: Pat. Riis Park Beach Bazaar would like to welcome John and Mary Glenn and Billy Casey to the team. Everyone played great but the results only showed one win. Ugh! Hopefully things will improve next week. Billy could not believe he was playing against his uncle, Sean Casey, who was recently recruited by "Your Name Could Be Here _____.” Was it a coincidence? Hum? And how competitive were the Ocean, Wave and Sun Ray divisions with each having six teams go either 3-2 or 2-3. That’s as tight as you can get. It’s All Good lost a close one to Breezy Point Lumber 2-3 but were spurred on by the young and old, Patrick and Dickie. Patrick “Russell Westbrook” Goldberg led the charge but people are already asking, “How much longer will he be on the squad?” Family blood oaths get broken all the time with this franchise. One and done? On the other hand, Dickie is not going anywhere. He’s one and not done. That loud sound you heard from court two was not boos but the crowd cheering “Shoes” as in Cement Shoes as he flew around the court making great play after great play. After one terrific spike his momentum took him under the net. The ref seemed OK with the first five steps but finally blew the whistle on step number six. When asked what happened, Cement Shoes replied that it takes both him and an aircraft carrier 7 miles to completely turn around. That’s momentum!

There are less bars sponsoring volleyball nights this season so week one was open. Next week’s party is at Rogers, which always supplies some of the best grub each season to go along with their hidden gem, a spectacular juke box. Put the date on your calendar (and all of the other Wednesday party dates, too). Welcome back to all of the returning sponsors and to the newest sponsors of RBVL teams. The league would not flourish without your financial support and is very grateful for your help. RBVL players should consider using some of the many league sponsors for personal items. After all, these businesses supported you when you needed them; why not return the favor and support them if you need services they provide. Your league has become the place to be during the summer in Rockaway. Remember that has happened primarily because of great camaraderie and sportsmanship more than great athletic play, although there is quite a bit of that, too.

This season the RBVL has a lack of staff writers so you may not see anyone at the beach or bar typing up your silly team stories, which we all love. However, captains are reminded that they can have items entered in the weekly Wave article by emailing Joe at jmcgivney2@nyc.rr.com by 11 p.m., on Wednesday night. As a reminder, the RBVL has gone “green” and the Rules and 2017 Schedules are posted on the website. This saves the printing of thousands of pages of copies. If you have any questions along the way please contact Steve Gifford via email at irvman331@verizon.net.

See you on the beach!

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