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Week 8 '07

RBVL Resumes Play   

By Joe McGivney

Surprise, surprise!  The sun didn’t exactly shine but volleyballs sailed anyway during the weekly RBVL action on Wednesday night at Riis Park.  After two rainouts in the last three weeks, players were just happy to be playing and their enthusiasm and energy couldn’t be dampened by the overcast skies and possible thunderstorms.  In fact, as usual after a storm passes, the playing conditions were ideal with pleasant temperatures and no wind.  The perfect weather led to spectacular ball games at all levels of play.

For the Beach, Sun and Moon divisions, the rained out games of 7/11 were played in lieu of a scheduled position night and several matches were real barnburners.  In the Moon Division, a key battle saw A Night Out edge McMahon’s Irish Pub 3-2, while Team Margarita and Last Call solidified their 2nd and 3rd place positions, winning 5 and 4 points respectively.  The top three in the Sun Division distanced themselves from the pack only losing one game out of 15.  The Blarney Castle (5), the Wave (5) and Jameson’s Transplants (4) look like the teams to beat.  The top three Beach Division squads did the same thing with Healy’s Ratpack and the Federation winning 5 with the Belle Harbor Yacht Club taking 4.  This is the most evenly matched section of the league and right now any of 8 teams could finish first or any of 8 teams could finish last.  Next week, the Ocean, Wave and Boardwalk divisions will play their 7/11 matches and forgo their position night.  This helps to keep everyone's schedule more balanced.  This week, the top two units in each spanked their opponents to solidify the top spots.  Fillmore Insurance, Freedhand’s, the Flip-Cup All-Stars, Jameson’s, the Wharf Rats and the legendary Beach House are all headed to the playoffs and possible match-ups for supremacy with each other.

As a reminder, 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 the teams on the bubble to miss the playoffs are It’s All Good Tees, Aviator Aces, the Lobster House, www.bhyc.com, Happy Hour and EZ Knights – three new and three veteran teams.  However, there is a lot of volleyball to be played and these could change weekly.  Good luck to all coming down the stretch!  Remember that the posted standings are slightly inaccurate (Is that like being a little pregnant?) due to the partial matches played during the rainout week.  Each team’s win total is 100% on the money but the loss column is off.  It will be manually corrected at the end of the year to reflect the exact wins and losses but for now it remains off.  (Each team actually has more losses than shown to the tune of the number of games they played during the rainout.  If you played 3 games, you have 3 more losses; If you played 1 game, you have 1 more loss.)  The computer program we use for standings went berserk with the rainout scenario and we are doing the best we can with this unusual circumstance.

After the games, an estimated 120 players headed to Pier 92 for another party on the water.  That’s a pretty good turnout by some standards but a little disappointing considering there are 600 names on the rosters of the RBVL.  The folks that showed up were treated to the best and biggest food smorgasbord of the season.  The buffet started with mystery pork, mystery chicken, mystery beef, mystery vegetable casseroles backed up with baked ziti and do-it-yourself Shepherd’s Pie.  At least that’s what Dancer called it when he placed a scoop of mashed potatoes on top of his beef and gravy.  Patty beat the referees to the chow and that is not easy to do.  They have broken Steve Gifford’s old record (which had broken Coach’s old record) of “Most Times First on Line” and they are closing in on Hank Aaron.  After they left, another 16 trays of food were served and included dishes like chicken cacciatore, eggplant and chicken parmesan, lasagna, BBQ chicken, pork, roast beef, chicken wings and boiled potatoes for the Irish vegetarians.  To tell you the truth, the variety was so vast I can’t even remember all of the items; you had to see it to believe it.  During the night, anyone ordering a “Long Trail” beer received a free tank top with his drink from their rep, Laurie.  Not to mention a tasty pint of the Vermont microbrews finest!  Adding a DJ to crank out some vintage tunes was the crowning touch on a wonderful evening out on the back deck of Pier 92.

Even Kenny took a break from the Lobster House to join in the party and he said it looked “Good.”  His team had earlier won the battle of 92nd St. 3-2 against his neighbor and our host Pier 92.  Simon and Patty were looking to put the mashed potatoes over some beans and toast to make Scottish Shepherd’s Pie but alas the beans were nowhere to be found.  Where was the Coppersmith’s gang?  Sorry, Kealy’s, they were a no-show.  While Bobby Fash’s lawsuit against “The Slanderer” has bogged down in the courts he did the next best thing to get even - he ate Rocky’s chicken wings the minute Rocky went to the bar for a beer.  Did John Sica really miss this week’s family feud with the Flip-Cup All-Stars because he turned 50?  I find it hard to believe.  I know he missed his job writing this article for the Wave.

Jason called in from his honeymoon (from Las Vegas or Hawaii, the team isn’t sure) to find out how the Bay House Babes fared and was very disappointed to find out they were missing their Muscles and fell to archrival Healy’s 0-5.  Healy’s doesn’t write much for the articles and they definitely don’t gloat but Reenee wants to set the record straight - even though she was a dirty stay-out last week, she was still in bed and asleep before Patty went home.  Checking the scores, it looks like the Beach Orphans won their first match of the season and the Brooklyn Transplants were shut out for the first time in their franchise history.  The Sharks edged It’s All Good Tees 3-2 behind Jeannie’s serves and John’s spikes but TBG still provided the highlight of the match with a grandiose block on John.  The highlight wasn’t so much the block as it was the Irish jig and strut he did afterward.  As Seal noted, Murph was “Born anew!”  Other longtime female legends, Alice and Eileen, had terrific serving games as well.  Eileen’s opponents, the Coral Reefers, managed to get through a rare “Wardrobe Malfunction” when a bra busted open and had to be surgically removed during a timeout.  The “Unfettered Breast” ploy almost worked to perfection, as the Beach House men couldn’t seem to concentrate on the game for a while.

Kerry Hills beat Harbor Light 4-1 in very close and thrilling games.  Kevin Egan was a master at the net, nothing got by him.  Rob was on his game with great serves and spikes, maybe because he had a restful day and didn't go to the gym yesterday.  The entire team played awesome!  Welcome back to Mike Stone, maybe he only comes out in perfect weather conditions.  The best match had to be between BHYC and Connolly's.  Both teams played 3 guys and 3 girls all night.  Nearly every game went to overtime and the volleys were painfully long for the aging competitors.  Everywhere balls were getting chased down and brought back into play.   Team Aviator got stuck in a massive traffic jam on the other side of the Bridge and then they got stuck running into the brick wall known as the Federation 0-5 – not a good one for the rookies.  Last Call warns Frankie the Sandwich to lay of the ham and use more cheese.  Dan came to the party but Nay chose the French Open instead of the RBVL.  She needs to get her priorities straight.  Where were MacGyver, Zsa-Zsa and Gabriella?  The party is just as important as the match.  Happy birthday, Donna!  Many more!  It wasn’t the big 3-0, 4-0, 5-0 or 6-0 but it was one of the ones between 30 and 100.  Mary Beth, did you locate the MIA Bugsy?  John Resker says he decided to stay home to watch the cartoon network with his kids because he enjoys the intellectual stimulation.  The Transplants used Marty Charles construction helmet for a beer chest.  It held four cases.  He was later seen wearing a planter for a hat, a la Devo.

Many division races remain tight as the schedule turns for home and heads into the last three Wednesday night battles.  That also means there are only three more parties so don’t hold back – get out of the house and off of the beach and spend some time with your neighbors and friends before we shut down for the season.  Next week, the party will be hosted by the Wharf, our third consecutive outdoor sponsor.  Make sure you stop by and spend some time at the back deck. See you on the beach!