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Sugar Bowl Bounces Back Against Freedhandís 

By Rocky and Joe Abbracciamento

For a change, the nearest rainstorm was in Tuscaloosa and the Rockaway Beach Volleyball League enjoyed a dry, sunny evening Wednesday night at Riis Park.  In the top division, the Sugar Bowl played their best ball of the year and pushed the big dogs of Freedhandís to the limit, just missing an upset win with a 2-3 score.  Many matches were nail-biters and many division races tightened up, setting the stage for a big finish to regular season play next week.  For two weeks in a row the great weather was followed by a great night at the post-event establishment. The Bay House (a new sponsor) took it to a new level by providing live music along with great food and a picturesque bay view for the 140 estimated partygoers.  Kudos to Sean Sheridan and his entire staff!

Remember that the top 8 teams in any division make the playoffs.  For the Ocean, Wave and Boardwalk divisions that means everyone; for the Beach, Sun and Moon that means the top 8 teams only.  The 9th and 10th place teams from each of those three groups (6 teams total) will play in a round-robin tournament against each other on 8/11.  There might even be a case of beer in it for the winner.  (Who needs one of those sweatshirts anyway?)  Right now several teams have been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs Ė Aviator Aces, the Lobster House, www.bhyc.com, and EZ Knights.  Itís All Good Tees are on life support and Happy Hour is in the deep rough.  However, there is one more big week of volleyball to be played and things could change.  Good luck folks! 

What do the 1927 Yankees have on RBVL Hall-of-Famers Bobby Fash, Pappy Wren, Dickie Ferrin and Tommy Tunes?  Nothing.  Iíll take our lineup over their squad any day of the week.  (Of course their guys are all presently deceased.)  Has anyone seen John Sica since he turned 50?  Was he kidnapped by AARP?  Best wishes to venerable ref and founding father, Tommy Kearns who is recovering from surgery.  There is no truth to the rumor he gave the surgeon a red card for being late.  Doctors still do not know what is wrong with brother Stevie but they continue to investigate.  Most recently they examined his head and found nothing.  The George Johnsonís crew at the BHYC nosed out the Bay House Babes 3-2 in five exciting games.  The Babes were helped by their great fans, George, Gerard, Joanne and Frank (Sealís new best friend).  Reenee stopped singing ďAll By MyselfĒ when her BFF, Beth Ann showed up to watch her back.  When were Alice and Debbie hired as hostesses at the Bay House?  Great job, ladies.

Connollyís, with their concrete feet, placed second place in all five games against the Federation.  Cement Shoes Flanagan, you have competition.  Steve didnít have his lucky hat, which was dipped in the water at Lourdes and tragedy prevailed.  Glen Pfister was again traveling, this time to Tampa.  Canít he buy good cigars in New York?  Cubby swore he saw a yellow whale swim by while down at the waterís edge after a few cold ones.  Evidently it was nothing more than a ďhopticalĒ illusion.  Simon Says Sea Bar would like to thank Robin Shapiro Desert Island for being on California time.  This allowed Simons Says to take four games.   They are ready to pull a Billy Martin on ex-manager Tommy Lochinata. Pat and Jac were Shapiroís lucky charm and helped take the fifth game.   Alex Moule did a great job as a rookie referee and even called a net violation on his dad.  Veteran ref, Joe McGivney loaned him his whistle for the match.  What are these two, our own Harry Potter and Professor Dumbledore?  Was the whistle enchanted?  Read book #7 to find out.  Murph would like the people to know that its All Good is all gone.  There as gone as a mouse at a cat picnic. This is the first time they have not made the playoffs in 17 years. Itís All Good is now known as Itís all Bad.

Jamesonís knocked over the Flip-Tops three to two.  With the division already won, the top Flip-Tops decided to take the night off.  T.C was playing like a man on borrowed time. Yes he is getting married and joining the un-dead.  Mike Buckley A.K.A. - Buck Arms- was in vintage form.  The Greens backyard is in tremendous shape.  Coppersmiths played the Big Mahooshkas and lost three games to two.  They miss Monica who is in California visiting relatives.  Compliments to Judy Aikens who has mastered the fine art of bumping. Game five was close but Jack choked.  Care for an apple?  The three Resker  rule  was in effect  but one Resker refused to leave the court.  (No names, Jamie.)  The Transplants took four from the Kerry Hills without any help from John Resker. He takes ballroom dancing on Wednesday night and thus the conflict.   Rose had a great spike to win game three. Jimmy M made incredible saves all over the beach.  In one instance he needed EZ pass to get through the crowd.  Jamesonís Transplants lost to the hair den-- all with  two points.    A number of factors affected their performance.  The team captain was involved in a buy and bust.  Duty calls.  Marty should have taken a lesson from Sampson because shaving his beard did not help.  Although people feel like theyíre driving by Flushing Meadow park when they see his head. The battle of Brooklyn is next week as the Jamesonís Transplants play the Brooklyn Transplants.  No hinduís or do-overís but Pensy Pinkies are allowed.  No pinky rings however.

The EZ Knights swat team won two out of five and the last three were really close.  Too bad TJ Frogger didnít make a cameo appearance - the Knights could have won five.  Hats off to Happy Hour for being such a nice team.  I guess thatís why they are called ďHappyĒ Hour.  Pier  92 would like the BHYC to know that the Piranhas think they are tops. (Thatís funny, they donít look like baseball cards.)  Katie Purpura regrets leaving a fourth -place club to join a last-place club.   Vinny Bonanno has a new job working for PLI, a not-for-profit law institute.   He is off to South Beach for a little R and R before starting work.  Todayís drinking tip:  Never take a drink from a urologist.  Tara Beth is the best.  Please bear with us as we sometimes have to change court layouts an hour before the games begin.  We are trying hard to cooperate with the Park Service aviary program.  For those of you who have screaming kids on the sideline you need to remind them that silence is golden but duck tape is silver. 

I get a little verklempt just writing this but we have only one more week to go.  Next week, the party will be hosted by the BHYC, our traditional final blast.  Join DJ Teddy for music, dancing, fun and games until the wee hours of the morning.  Sharpen your elbows and pad your hips for the third annual Adult Musical Chairs Tournament, which is always a finale highlight.  Last year the Yacht Club hosted the biggest turnout and you can look for more of the same this year. 

On Saturday, 8/11 the Rockaway Beach Volleyball troops will battle for the last time this summer on the sands of Riis Park.  The playoffs will begin at 10:30 AM sharp and will continue until 6 champions are crowned in 6 divisions later in the afternoon.  Nets will be available to set up at 9:45 AM.  If you like to practice before a big match get to the beach early.  A DJ and a light lunch will highlight the day.  Feel free to bring any additional beverages but remember that bottles are prohibited at Riis.  Alcoholic drinks are fine but I repeat, BOTTLES ARE PROHIBITED. 

Also remember that the gala RBVL Awards Dinner is set for Friday night 9/14 at the Knights of Columbus.  The party includes an open bar, bottled beer and hot food with live music. Captains will be collecting money soon and the first 200 people will be confirmed. The exact cost has not been determined yet but last year the price was $70 and it will be similar this time around.  In the past we have never had to turn anyone away but last year we came close.  Reserve your tables early.  Talk to Rocky or Bugsy if you have any questions.  We'll see you on the beach one last Wednesday!  (I can't believe I just said that.  Where did the summer go?)