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RBVL Heads Down the Homestretch

By Joe McGivney    


The Rockaway Beach Volleyball League was greeted in week 8 with more beautiful weather at Riis Park.  Will it ever end?  A moderate wind churned things up a little bit but the conditions were really close to perfect.  Can it continue next week?  And the two weeks after?  Let’s hope so.  Position week featured many key battles for placement in 8 of the 10 divisions.  Only the Beach and Moon divisions had regularly scheduled games.  Here are the results of the battles between the top two teams in each division.  In the Ocean, 2nd place team Freedhand’s beat Kobeyaki 3-2; in the Ocean Breeze, JG Electric zapped the Mighty Crom 4-1; in the Wave, Kiss My Ace upset frontrunner Pico bar 4-1; in the Beach Breeze, Kevin C. Buckley’s Sandstorms whooped RBNY PT 4-1; in the Boardwalk, Breezy Point Lumber edged It’s All Good 3-2, winning game 5 by a 21-19 score; in the Sun, Rock Beach shut out division leader Newtown Sharks and jumped into a tie for first place; in the Sun Ray, Le Greann broke their tie for first with a 3-2 win over Bulloch’s Tows in the Sands; in the Star, DysFUNctional only won 1 game against the Downtown Diggers and barely held onto their first place position.  The pennant races are starting to tighten up as the stretch run to the playoffs begins. 


The Invisible Girl appeared for Casino Auto Body and so did the Visible Girl, who happened to be invisible last week.  Brianna, Katie and Lauren spearheaded Casino to a tight 3-2 victory over the Sand Spikers.  That meant Emergency Girl, Alana, got the night off for a change.  What a treat for Casino to see HOF former player Anna stop by for a visit from the West Coast.  Coach Rocky’s beach chair dates back to his high school graduation in the early seventies when he received it as a gift but the gray vintage duct tape holding it together was from a more vintage year, say, around 1990.  It’s All Good is battling for a championship in the Boardwalk but has another dubious record at stake as well.  No one is sure who has more runner-up finishes in league history but informal discussions point to Abbracciamento’s and It’s All Good in a dead heat.  Neither Rocky nor Bugsy wants to win this battle.  The King is dead!  TBG just gave way to TBDL – The Big Disabled List.  He was unable to answer the bell for game 6 after a very rough concert in Prospect Park the other night.


Rathbones Pub has been holding onto 1st place all season long but dropped behind Last Call by a point with their 2-3 loss to them in the battle for first in the Moon.  They credit their good season to Lindsay DeBoer who is back and stronger than ever after knee surgery.  Little Paul Peterson has been a monster at the net.  They are hoping for a second sweatshirt after waiting 11 years to get their first one in 2015.  Stay tuned.  Last Call had a great night, winning three out of five games without Connor Boy, who was on the injured list.  Three women and three men worked out well and kudos to the women as they proved themselves stronger than Popeye ever was.  More kudos to the real nurse with her awesome serves.  Grandpa Brown is on a fixed income so was he picking up the trash or collecting empties?  Uncle Frankie made Caleb cry.  Was it the new hairdo or the scary face?  Grandpa Brown did indeed behave himself because baby Caleb was observing him with his big blue eyes.  Daisy was caught weight lifting Caleb in preparation to take over the team when grandpa retires.  Atwood's Boozers was the talk of the night.  If anyone over 50 is interested, please contact our beer boy for more information.  It was great to see Hannah and Caleb as they made the trip from Florida to watch Papa-Chic in action.  Rock Beach atoned for its two week hangover and took 5 from the #1 seed, Newtown Sharks.  There is life in this senior team yet.   Note to team - if we stop drinking from this day until August 12th we have a shot at the title.  Aaron Miller finally played more than one game and we discovered that he is the Phil Niekro of volleyball, displaying the eephus serve as well as the heat.  Who knew?  Now you can't leave.


Chicks to Go had their best night so far, winning three of 5 intense games, in the Moon Division.  Everyone played great but Jacqueline had an amazing night with some unbelievable saves.  All and all it was a great night with great friends and friendly competition.  Y.N.C.B.H. (Your Name Could Be Here) had another tough one this week, losing to the Gliders 2-3.  Olivia snuck out of her house before lockdown, which was good but did not eat anything, which was bad.  She was very grateful to get some grub from the Glider’s parents, the poor thing.  Mr. Happy is ready to call Child Services.  The Angry Murph (Tom), not TBG, was working with the parents of the year, trying to take out the rest of the team including Rick’s knees and Caroline’s face.  Double ouch!  No one messed with Mr. Happy because he wasn’t playing too good.  (Not because he is El Presidente of the RBVL.)  Y.N.C.B.H. missed their valedictorian Jon.  Was he home studying for the Commissioner’s job already?  The team still remains tied for 2nd place with a bright future.  Mr. Happy continues to build Y.N.C.B.H. with happiness and love, a novel approach in the RBVL.


In a recent RBVL article, there were some shout outs by ten-year players (relative newbie’s) about their enjoyment in playing in the RBVL.  Coach would like to add to the all - time Top 10 list of 25 plus year uber veterans from 108th and 86th Street. The list is not complete without Nancy Gentile who is the driving force in starting the league and was inspirational in growing the league. The last original franchise is the Beach House whose longtime players include Bob and Janet Fash along with Dickie Ferron.  Other super veterans include Tim Smith, Jimmy Mack, Tom Ford and Ed Brean, the Haiku Laureate of RBVL, along with his wife Jenny and Ocean Division players, Craig Carey, Bernie O’Connor, Tom Dalgish and Scott Hendricks.  Coach would also like to mention a karma cure for Alex and Brian of Magee and 9 Others.  At mid-season, the team has more losses this year than last year’s first place regular season finish using the name Hyper Athletics. IMO, it is the team name!  At a recent tournament he refereed, he saw a few good names such as Spikeasaurus Rex and the Spiking Plovers.  Reaching back in the RBVL graveyard of team names, here are a few more suggestions. Think Happy Campers, Holy Children or Patty Moule’s first team name Club 101.  Your welcome!


It is getting darker earlier and earlier.  Picking up your net early and setting up early are still really good ideas.  The first team on the schedule is the away team and is responsible for returning the net to the POD, where Steve is waiting for you.  Bring it back as soon as your match finishes.  Check the bag for the ball and all other equipment.  Wait until it has been marked “Returned” and then go on your merry way.  On Wednesday night another team joined the forfeit and probation brigade.  The Cabana from the Wave Division never returned their bag and will forfeit any wins they had this week.  They are now the 3rd team on probation in 3 weeks which means they could be out of the league with any other violations, including unsportsmanlike conduct, forfeits, etc.  Be very careful, folks.  The weekly after-party was held at the Community House and attendance was dismal though the food was good and plentiful.


Friday, 7/28, is the Gray Beard’s Family Fun Run with races for all ages and levels of competition.  It’s just fun!  Additionally, Bay Ridge’s top Tuesday night band, Gearth, Wind and Fireman (featuring long-time RBVL member Joe McGivney), will be playing live music for the races and subsequent BBQ.  Come on by and have some fun.  And see what Joe does when he is not bumping, setting or spiking.  Captains are reminded that they can have items entered in the weekly Wave article by e-mailing Joe at jmcgivney2@nyc.rr.com by 11 PM on Wednesday night.  So far, hardly anyone has submitted items and your articles will get shorter and shorter each week.  And that’s OK if that’s your choice.  Otherwise, send a sentence or two to be printed.  Or, if you know someone in the league interested in writing, let us know.  Maria Perez is a reporter/photographer from the Wave and she will be taking pictures at the beach each week.  Make her feel welcome at our Wednesday night extravaganza.  I’m sure you’ll agree; pictures are nice.  If you have any questions along the way please contact Steve Gifford via e-mail at irvman331@verizon.net.  

See you on the beach!