New Mexico Beach Volleyball Videos

Aspen Battle, 2007 Part I Part II

Monday, July 30, 2007

Sneakerz Series #3

Time again to get down and dirty in the soles of Sneakerz. This third event in the series should be a good one, with some cooler weather and a bit of cloud cover. Same rules and format as usual, short pool and double elim. Chris will be running the show, plan on an 8:30 arrival and $30/ team entry fee. This is the last one before the championship, so be sure to get out there and position yourself for some bonus prizes! Should be some good teams this weekend.
UPDATE: Heard it was a great tournament. About 8 teams, but everybody got lots of play. Loric and I sat this one out. The finals sounded dramatic, with Nate and Thierry coming back to win a double final over Chris & Matt - congrats to them! Here are the results:
1. Nate and Thierry; 2. Chris and Matt; 3. Ricardo and Matt; 4. Jeff and Larry; 5. Adam and Bryan; Daniel and Bryan

Taos Solar Spike

Well, fresh back from a trip up to Taos. It was a pretty good event, with strong backing from the local radio station and the town itself. Disapointed in the turnout, at least in the sand. The grass had a decent showing, especially with the battle of the businesses. There were only 6 teams in the men's sand and 4 womens. It's just difficult to get the limited number of players to turn out from the region for events before they get established. I think announcing and locking prize money prior to an event will help to attract open players, maybe also listing entries. A little disappointing to have the low turnout affect the payout in the sand. That being said, the teams were good quality and there were some good matches. A couple of new young guys came out from Albuquerque and were very impressive in their sand doubles debut. Apparently one of them played hoops for UNM. Hopefully they are excited about the sport and will keep coming out for events and work on improving their skills throughout the winter. Another surprise team was Bryan and Nate. Nate is a very strong player in the area from Alaska (though he started playing in CA) for the summer and Bryan is another of the young new guys. They put some good games together and the experience was undoubtedly good for Bryan. Matt played with his friend Adam from back in school, who hadn't played in a while, but looked like a real dangerous player when things started getting back in his groove. Surprise team for the weekend was Jeff and Desi, who put together some great matches, beating Matt and Adam two out of three matches (two of which went 3 games and both wins were in the double elim) and they even pushed us to a tight match in the winner's bracket final. The finals were played in rainy conditions, and Loric and I were clicking well, so we came out on top in a fairly decisive manner. Looked like they had a good turnout for Coed on the grass on Sunday as well. Congrats to Vanessa and Erin who looked to be playing real strong ball since coming back from Chicago and winning the women's open. Hopefully the event will continue to grow next year. Here are the men's results:
1) Loric Box/ Adam Rubel; 2) Jeff Poole/ Desi Vigil; 3) Matt Valencia/ Adam 4) Nathan Beck/ Bryan Klein; 5) Cameron Vigil/ Jeff Hart; 5) Sonny Marquez/ Kameron Cheney

Friday, July 20, 2007

Back from the Beach!

It was a successful outing to the heart of the world for beach volleyball - Hermosa Beach. My wife and I flew in Thursday night, and after a 2 1/2 hour delay that got us to our hotel around 1:30AM, we met up with Loric the next day on the sand. He had tested his knee out with some peppering with his wife, and it felt OK, so he was ready to give it a go. We did some peppering and drills over by the pier. The AAU beach nationals was going on, and the girls were playing this day. AAU has amateur divisions for different age groups all the way up to 20 and under. There were a bunch of kids there representing Puerto Rico that were playing in the boys division the following day and they wanted to get some games in, so we obliged. It was a good chance for us to get our sand legs in the deep Hermosa pits, and helped them to get some playing in. We went further down the beach later in the day and did some drills with just the two of us - hitting shots, jump serving, passing, etc. Back up to the pier later and tan into those kids, still playing and still wanting to challenge. To be 18 again - those kids played all day long, the day before their big tournament. Not much competition for us, but fun games. Worst part was I noticed that night that even though the sand was just warm, I had blistered my feet pretty bad. How stupid, first day and I blister. Just had to throw on some sandsocks. Next day, we met up with somebody I've know through the AVP forum and email for some games. Decent players, but Loric and I started to get our game on and had no problem adjusting to the sand. We ran the court all day, playing probably close to a dozen games, followed by copious amounts of ocean swimming. Of course, I was relegated to sand socks and my feet just seemed to be getting worse. Loric's knee, however, seemed to be holding up just fine. Sunday we went back out to meet up with the same group and continued to run the court, creating a meltdown on an opposing team that caused a partner swap and left Loric and I playing against each other. The guy I knew coaches a number of players on tour and had one of his men's players coming for a practice session later that morning. He asked if we'd stick around and help run him through some drills. We did, taking tons of swings, digging, passing, plaing things out, etc. Good workout for sure. It's amazing how many players there are in that area, and how many of them get to workout on a regular basis with a coach, train and drill. No wonder it's where the top players all go! We definitely had our fill, but could have kept going for weeks longer. The games and practice should really be a big boost to our game as we return to NM for the Taos Solar Spike Tourney, local events and of course Motherlode in Aspen. My feet got so bad by the end that they were swollen for days and could barely fit into my sneakers. Some treatments and they are back down to normal size and the blisters are healing, ready for more practice next week when Loric returns!

7-14 Charlie's Sanbox Results

It sounds like a good last tournament at Charlie's Sandbox last weekend. Thanks to Chris for running the show while we were away. Hopefully we can continue to turn out men's and women's teams for the rest of the summer. Of course, next weekend is the Taos Solar Spike! This is really looking like a fun event. The battle of the business division is filling up fast, but we still need to get players out in the other divisions. Lots of good stuff in this one, wouldn't want to miss it! Here are the results from last weekend at Charlie's:
Women (6 Teams)
1. Maddy and Shannon; 2. Steph and Chandra
Men (8 Teams)
1. Chris and Matt; 2. Ricardo and Matt J.; 3. Jorge and Rob; 4. Jeff and Larry

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

AVP Quali, Injury, Heading to CA

Well, this past week Loric and I headed in different directions. He headed to the mountains to camp with his family while I headed with my wife to the east coast to see mine. I got in to the AVP qualifier in Seaside. Big accomplishment, because I now have a point that means I shouldn't be eliminated from future big draw events, meaning Loric and I should be able to get into quali's this year and next. We had to play the first game of the tourney, at 8:00 AM on Thursday. It was wet, hot and cold, seemed like the weather changed three times during the match. It's always tough getting out with someone you are not used to playing with, especially in a single elim tourney with decent competition. My partner Jeff and I played fairly well, but there were streaks of giving and getting points which showed a lack of consistency in teaming together. We dropped the first game in extra points on a net dribbler ace. We won the second game, which got close at the end, although we had a steady lead throughout. Too many mistakes in the third wound up costing us the match against a decent, but beatable team from Ohio. It was good to see a lot of players that I know and some I hadn't seen for many year. One of the big goals was to watch Karch Kiraly play one of his last tournaments. He was pretty amazing for any age, let alone a 47 year old. I talked with Loric today. He was supposed to play up in Steamboat with Matt from CO. Unfortunately, he hurt his knee in the last tournament we played together at Sneakerz and wasn't able to give it a go. He's out in CA right now and was going to practice moving around a bit to see if we will be able to play at all this weekend. We fly out tomorrow night and will spend 4 days in Hermosa Beach, the heart of Beach Volleyball. Looking forward to spending more time on a beach and getting some touches against some of the toughest competition anywhere. Next big event for us is going to be the Taos Solar Spike, which will draw strong teams from the region and is shaping to be a great event. This weekend is and event at Charlie' Sandbox. Teams looking to register should contact Chris:

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Splittin' the Diferrence

Loric and I are heading seperate ways this week. I'm writing from the airport in Houston, en route to New Jersey where I hope to get a crack at playing in an AVP qualifier at Seaside Heights. Loric is already on his way up in Colorado, camping out until the big tournament this weekend in Steamboat Springs. Loric will be playing with Matt Akromis up there, a solid player from Denver whom I teamed with last year for a very respectable 4th place at the King of the Mountain in Vail. They should do very well. I'm playing with Jeff from NY at the quali. Jeff and I already played a couple of times this year in Florida, without much success, but I'm hopeful we can turn it around for this event. In fact, I'm hopeful we'll be able to get to play in the event at all. The last two AVP qualifiers I attempeted to play in the past two years were met with rejection before ever being allowed to step on the court. Tempe in 2005 and Huntington in 2006 were both limited draws, and not having the time or resources to follow the quali circuit around the country meant I had not accumulated enough points to gain entry. They are listing a 40 team qualifier in Seaside Heights for each men and women, I'm hoping that many west coast players will not make the expensive trip out and the Thrusday event will keep away many players with regular jobs. It looks like none of the qualifiers have filled up this year. You'd think winning the AVP next open regional championship last year would have been a boost, but the AVP doesn't use AVP finishes. Anyhow, stepping on the court would be a success in that it would allow me to get at least a few points and give Loric and I a much better chance of getting into a future event, perhaps the big one in Manhattan in August. It should be interesting, with 8 main draw slots available and a small q, and the forcast is calling for a good chance of rainy weather. Seaside Heights is not my favorite beach in NJ, but it is where I won my first open tournement way back when I was a 16 year old kid. I might also pick up a partner to play in the GAV event on Saturday, we'll see. After flying back home to NM on Monday, my wife and I will hop on a quick flight Thursday night and head out to Hermosa Beach where Loric and I will reunite and get some practice and hopefully a tourney in against the best competition in the country. I'll keep posting about how things turn up out here, and Loric should be giving me a call to let me know how it goes in Steamboat. Summertime....good stuff!