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RBVL Off to a Great Start

By Joe McGivney and John Sica                                            6/21/13


Last week the RBVL and the Wave experienced some growing pains so this week’s article will capture the first two weeks of the season.  The Rockaway Beach Volleyball League kicked of the 2013 season Wednesday night 6/12 at Riis Park with an opening night that featured 74 teams, tying the league record.  Nine divisions of different levels of play battled fiercely on the beach on a perfect evening, whose moderate temperature and still skies made for long, contested, competitive volleys.  The RBVL Committee does a lot of work and tries to cover many contingencies but weather is out of their control so the first ace of the season goes to God, who gave players a perfect night with perfect weather.  Keep it up, Big Guy.  And doesn’t he really owe us one after Hurricane Sandy?  And speaking of Sandy, many lives, families, homes and businesses remain turned upside down.  However, no matter what your personal situation is you knew that Wednesday was volleyball night and all was right in the world for those two hours on the beach.  And that’s what makes the RBVL so great.


Two time defending champion W. J. Lachner Painting moved up again and won their first match in the Sun Division 4-1 over Team Margarita.  Their infamous leader didn’t bump, set or spike one ball but sure had a lot to say from the sidelines.  Once again Sands Point PT is thankful to Tim for his generous support of the team throughout the years.  Connolly’s beat Blackwater 4-1 and could be on their way to a big season.  Or it could have been a fluke and they may have their same old sucky season.  We shall see.  Steve didn’t look too bad for the first week.  However he looked bad for someone who has played in the league for over 30 years and has a net in front of his house.  Here is Mr. Happy’s summary of the match: Connolly’s beats no-show Sica's team.  Where was John?  Where was Rita?  Jim who?  John who?  Who cares?  Ed's still got it but I don’t know about Jenny.  Why is the Wave editor taking pictures of Mr. Happy?  The end.  A great match was had by all with the Snottie Yachties edging the Stanii 3-2 in five neck and neck games with long volleys.  Somehow Patty dug two hard spikes from Billy Collins and Simon made a crazy save running off the court and bumping it backwards over the net.  Wow!  Casino Auto Body lost to the young guns of Off the Net 1-4 but even more devastating was the loss of their captain and co-captain, Rocky and Joe, who both sustained meniscus tears of the knee during the spring basketball season.  They both may miss the entire summer 2013 season.  Just to make then useful, Denise gave them whistles and clipboards and turned them into referees overnight.  After one week there are only ten undefeated teams left out of 74.  Happy birthday to two great Americans, George H. W. Bush, who turned 89 and Bobby H. W. Fash who turned less than 89.  Reportedly, they both wore the same birthday suits to their respective parties – green plaid shorts with Hawaiian surfboard shirts and clashing undergarments.


Greetings from Commissioner Patty:  What a wonderful feeling it was to see all those happy faces tonight.  After all we have been through, just to see so many of us gathered together on such a beautiful night was a magical feeling.  Then we headed off to The Playland Motel (aka Boggianos).  Behind that scaffolding was an oasis awaiting the RBVL family - a welcoming deck, fresh, healthy, delicious food and the kindest owners of this new Rockaway establishment.  Many thanks to Whitney (the chef), Diego and Eduardo (the owners) for believing in Rockaway and creating a place that let’s us remember the old times there and create new memories. WELCOME BACK EVERYBODY!  The first-night party can often be a little quiet but this one was terrific and well attended.  Our sponsors are very generous and they don’t ask much of us in return.  Stopping by for free food and a drink or two doesn’t seem like much to ask.  Keep up the good work.  For the second year in a row our corporate sponsor, Corona Light, is back and we thank them for their generous support.  If you don’t come to the post-game party you don’t know what you’re missing.  Just ask Denise. She won the first raffle of the year and took home a beautiful bike from Corona.  It’s probably nestled in her Executive Bike Parking spot at the BYHC.  She’s lucky that #50 left the party and a second number had to be picked, making her #17 (Hondo) the winner.  Four more correct numbers and the Powerball and she would have won $145,000,000.  No roof, no door, no problem.  Playland Motel is still under construction but that did not stop them from hosting a great party in their backyard.  Mix in DJ Mouse (www.djmouse.com) and the party was really cooking.  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. 


Now on to week two.  After an adventurous net and rope de-tangling session, the sun shone strong on the Sun Cycle Fitness Studio Island players. They brushed off their sand and began the Battle of the Fabrys. Tim's sun-reaching arm extension blinded The Rogers Irish Setters while Brian’s serves set Sun Cycle on the right track. Jacqueline, Joanne and Tracy got the volleyball setup for attack while Pat and John followed through with the big bang spikes putting Sun Cycle ahead 3-2.   Miley’s Home Improvements has adjusted to the top division, after moving up two divisions, and losing all five games the first week.  Behind the strong play of DBO digging up the Riis Park sands and Cali Kid doing it all, (the same person), Miley’s took 4 games.  Rachel threatened to skip this week but knew her team needed her great swings and she rose to the occasion.  Miley’s is on a historic run in the league - they entered in the fifth division and won it, then were moved up to the fourth division and won it and then were moved up to the third division and won it.  Now to punish them they were catapulted to the first division and we shall see.  Connolly’s is in mid-season form losing four to Jameson’s.  Even Gabby couldn’t help the old-timers out.  For Jameson’s, TC was actually awake which inspired his team.  To inspire the young girls on the team, Steve offered “One Direction” tickets at Jones Beach.  To the many older members of the league,” One Direction” is not your direction.  Sands Point Physical Therapy won 5 games last week and was out in full force last week.  This week they won only two games and no one was in Rogers afterward.  Except Tommy Tunes who has no idea what happened so does he really count?  At least he knows its Lou Gehrig’s birthday and he’s a Mets fan.  God bless.  The Blackwater Boarders are going through growing pains as they welcome the addition of many new players - Krista, Kristen, Kathleen, and Chris.  They are confused by the many teachers on the squad but are grateful for their sharing of their vast volleyball experience.  The Boarders hope that their third string hitter, Bobby Butler, recovers from his grand delusions of greatness for at least one year.  You’re very welcome for us rescuing you from the mind-bending Baranha’s two years ago.  After two weeks there are only two undefeated teams left – Healy’s Rat Pack and It’s 5 O’clock Somewhere.  See how long you can make it last.


On a sad note, the RBVL lost veteran ref, Al Zawada, who passed away in the off-season.  You can still see Al’s picture on the website highlighting the referee availability forms.  Keep an eye on us, Al, and try to keep the sun shining on Wednesday evenings.  Condolences also go out to TBG, Timmy Murphy, who just lost his brother.  Keep the Murphy’s in your prayers.  The 2013 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 8/10.  On Saturday, 8/10, the league championships will be played, starting in the morning and running through until the afternoon, when nine champs will be crowned.  Then the real fun begins as teams try to outdo each other, partying late into the night.  The first night back on the beach ran smoothly with the help of many players, young and old, who pitched in wherever it was needed.   That’s the kind of cooperation that makes the league great.  Thank you for getting off on the right foot and keep up the good work.  We need that assistance weekly.  What didn’t go as smoothly was the bumping, setting and spiking!  It gets harder and harder each year.  However, the carrying looked to be in mid-season form.  Come early each Wednesdays and check the information board to find out where you are playing.  And bring your GPS system; you’ll need it.  And keep cleaning up all debris; we really need that help.  And make sure you return your equipment bags by 8:30 PM with the lines wound properly around the holder.  And the shovel does not go inside the bag.  Keep it outside.


Captains who have handed in unsigned rosters must now get them signed.  SIGNED rosters must be in by week three (6/26) at the latest.  All six people on your RBVL Committee are willing to help you with any problems that come up; just take care of matters in a respectful manner.  For new players, the RBVL Committee is made up of President Patty Moule (The Stanii), Steve Gifford (Connolly’s), Denise Brunner (Sun Cycle Island), John Sica (Blackwater Water Boarders) and Rocky and Joe Abbracciamento (Casino Auto Body).  You can find them every week, playing ball on the beach.  As always, if you have any questions before then please call Patty at 917-613-0908.  (Be sure to call between 10 AM and 9 PM.  Remember, Patty has a life outside of VB, 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. 


See you on the beach!