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RBVL Serves Up an Ace for Opener

By Joe McGivney                                           6/14/13




The Rockaway Beach Volleyball League kicked of the 2013 season Wednesday night 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.


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.


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. 

Everyone was reminded again of three rules that will be enforced this year at every level of play without exception:  1. ALL net violations must be called – no exceptions 2. NO underhand lift or reverse underhand throws are allowed 3. NO reaching over the net to interfere with a ball unless your opponent is directing the ball to your side of the court.  For those players who think that this results in too many whistles and say, “We just want to play,” get used to it.  Remember, we all just want to play - - - volleyball!  Not jungle ball!  And this year a player can receive a serve with open hands as long as they do it properly.  The Rules Committee adopted the standard volleyball rule in 2012 and it worked out fine.  We have many new refs, some of whom are learning on the job.  Some are young and some are not as young but they all are trying their best to call the games fairly.  Believe me, they do not have an ax to grind with any of our teams and we need you to treat them with respect.  (There has been occasional slippage in this department the last two seasons.)  To that end, please send us an e-mail (jmcgivney2@nyc.rr.com) on Thursdays with a quick summary of the previous night’s ref.  We’ll know who it was because we keep track of that stuff.  It can be simply, “Ref was great.”  Or give us some detail, “Ref called no net violations,” Ref called too many carries,” or “He called the game tighter than any ref this year.”  You get the idea – brief and to the point, both good and bad.  Thanks, in advance, for your assistance. 


Just a reminder, the RBVL has gone “green” and the Rules and 2013 Schedules are posted on the website.  This saves the printing of thousands of pages of copies.  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.  However, there is really no reason you can’t take care of that at the beach before your first game.  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.  They are always available to help out on any matters and answer your questions but especially:  Steve and Rocky for equipment issues, Denise and Joe for referee items, John, Rocky and Joe for articles for the Wave, Denise and Patty for uniforms and schedules.  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!