Tag Archive | "volleyball"

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Chargers win league title

Posted on 30 May 2012 by LeslieM

By Gary Curreri

Simply perfect.

The eighth graders at St. Coleman’s School capped off four years of perfection as they won 49 consecutive matches dating back to when they were fifth graders (including a 25- 16, 18-25, 15-12 victory over previously undefeated St. Bonaventure (Davie) recently in the All Broward Catholic Conference tournament).

After splitting the first two games in the final, St. Bonaventure seized a seemingly insurmountable sevenpoint lead before the Chargers battled back.

“It was going to take a lot of fight to get back into the game,” said St. Coleman’s coach Kristin Scher. “The girls never gave up though and kept pushing.”

With St. Bonaventure leading 11-4, Bailey Pearlman served eight consecutive points to pull St. Coleman’s ahead, 13-11. After a sideout, Madison Faust served at 14-12 to win the match for the Chargers and sealed the team’s 17th consecutive victory of the season.

“We knew going in it would be a tough match because St. Bonaventure had a great team,” said Scher, who noted that St. Bonaventure’s team hadn’t lost a match in a decade. “Our girls worked very hard all season though and really wanted this victory. I was so proud of them, not only for the win, but also for the way they won it. To be behind like that in a match and come back takes a lot of talent, confidence and heart – all of which this team has.”

“I am so proud of the way the whole team played together all season long,” Scher added. “They set a goal at the beginning of the season to remain undefeated and they worked hard to accomplish that. They are a great group of girls both on and off the court, and it has truly been a pleasure to coach each and every one of them.”

St. Coleman’s plays in the North League of the All Broward Catholic Conference (ABCC). The tournament featured the top teams in both the North and Central Leagues.

Scher cited the strong play of eighth graders Gabby Cook, Tori Tocco, Pearlman and Faust. The team advanced to the final with victories over St. Anthony, 25-19, 25-23; St. Mark’s, 25-9, 25-14, and St. David, 25-14, 25-23.


Soccer camps slated

For the first time ever, Simply Soccer will hold four summer camps in the city of Pompano. Dates are June 11-15, 25- 29; July 23-27 and Aug. 13-17.

Registration will be held at Pompano Beach Civic Center. The soccer camp is for boys and girls, ages 5-14 of all skill levels, who will be taught a variety of soccer skills from dribbling to shooting. This is the sixth year of camp offerings in Pompano Beach.

There are three sessions each day (for the Pompano camp) 9 a.m.- 3 p.m. ($100 weekly); extended hours camp is available 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. ($125 weekly); Tiny Tot program is offered for kids ages 5 and 6 from 9 a.m.-noon ($55 weekly).

Campers must bring a soccer ball, swimsuit, shin guards, water bottle and lunch. For more information, call the city of Pompano Parks and Recreation Department at 954-786- 4119 or 954-786-4111.

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Deerfield attracts top volleyballers

Posted on 19 January 2012 by LeslieM

Local beach volleyballers Mark and Steve Van Zwieten (right), said the competition on Deerfield Beach could be fierce. Photo by Gary Curreri

By Gary Curreri

With the Ranse Classic and the Red Bull Spiked Tournaments, Deerfield Beach has been making a name for itself both locally, nationally and now internationally as four Olympic teams have recently practiced on the local sand.

The most recent were the Canadian women and Russian men, who have spent the past two weeks at the local beach honing their skills and going through vigorous workouts and even playing against some of the top local competition.

Mark Van Zwieten, 24, of Pompano Beach, has been playing volleyball competitively for the past 15 years and played against the Russian team.

“I started in the backyard when I was 3 and that was because my family was into it,” said Van Zwieten, who graduated from Cardinal Gibbons High School in 2005 and led his team to a 31-0 mark and a state championship. He was named the MVP.

“It is really nice that the beach is attracting top teams. It is something that I haven’t utilized as much as I would like to and it is something I am ready to start. I’ll be able to get out here more on weekends.”

Van Zwieten has also excelled on the beach. He has played in four FIVB Beach Volleyball Junior World Championships and competed in the Under 19 Beach Volleyball World Championships in France in 2005.

In October, Mark Van Zwieten and his partner, Andrew Fuller, placed fifth in the Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico.

“It’s nice to represent the country,” Van Zwieten said. “I’ve gone to a lot of places through volleyball. The Pan Am games was an amazing event and I got to see the top players from around the world.”

Van Zwieten said the attraction to Deerfield Beach is simple since everything is so close.

“People can come down here and spend the whole day here,” he said. “You could play for a couple of hours, go grab lunch and come back and play some more. You don’t have to go and try and find parking or anything like that.”

The “pickup games” are very competitive.

“It varies throughout the year, but they can get really competitive,” Van Zwieten added. “There are consistently top level players coming through Deerfield and it is nice to see the variety of players from throughout the world.”

His brother, Steve Van Zwieten, 27, of Coconut Creek agreed:

“It is really cool,” said Steve Van Zwieten, who recently played in the USA Cuervo pro tournament with Mike DiPierro and placed 13th after losing to the second ranked team in the U.S. in Nick Lucena (Ft. Lauderdale) and Matt Fuerbringer. Van Zwieten’s wife, Kendra, is also a top player. “Just growing up here and being able to play all over the world. You go to California and Europe. It’s been great. California is definitely a little bit stronger, but everything is spread out. Everything on the east coast is here. Teams from Brazil and teams have come from California come here on a regular basis.”

Steve Van Zwieten believes the sport can continue to grow because of the juniors now playing.

“When I was 18, there was no juniors tour,” Steve Van Zwieten said. “Now, alongside our tour, there are junior kids. The sport is starting to grow, especially with the economy. It is a really cheap sport to play. Here, you just need a ball to play. You have to really be in shape because of the heat and the beach sand …  running around all day.”

Captain Lee Magnuson, who has a court dedicated in his name, helped get the courts built. Now, roughly 100 volleyballers, ranging in age from 14 to 72, will filter through Deerfield Beach on a weekly basis.

“Instead of going to Ft. Lauderdale or Miami, they will come to Deerfield Beach,” said Jimmy Mason, 54, who spends four months a year from Michigan. “It has a lot to offer – the restaurants, the pier and seven regulation courts and one futbal court.”

Local veteran volleyballer Hank Hoffman, 70, of Deer-field, said the sport got a boost locally when former Deerfield Beach resident, Cindy Phillips, started with Beach Dig and offered clinics.

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Volleyball, footvolley tourney a success

Posted on 23 November 2011 by LeslieM

Ranse Jones’ parents, Bob Jones and Sherry Marthinuss, on hand for this year’s event. Photos by Gary Curreri

By Gary Curreri


Ranse Jones’ motto was simple – “Live simple, play hard.” Jones, the AVP (Association of Volleyball Professionals) beach volleyball player who died last year, at age 34, was in the thoughts of those involved in the second annual tournament bearing his name on Nov. 11-13 in Deerfield Beach.

Deerfield Beach’s Flavia Peraira, teamed with Boca Raton’s Amanda Angermeier, took third in the women’s open division. Players drew their teammates randomly at a kickoff party the night before the competition. The duo both teach at Boca Raton High School and had teamed up before in winning a AA women’s tournament the year before.

“We were so excited because we played together before,” said Peraira, 28, Biology teacher at Boca Raton High School and former Georgia Southern University volleyball standout. “I think this is important because it combines the sport and brings everyone together for this (great) cause. It is a sad thing and, because we are turning it into something positive, it is amazing. It is very personal for a lot of people here in Deerfield Beach who know him.”

Peraira said she loves playing beach volleyball because of the weather, the competition and being healthy through the exercise.

“If I don’t play, I think something is missing,” added Peraira, who also coaches the sport. “I like the teaching part of it. Being outside and looking at the ocean. There is nothing better.”

Jones, who was from Deerfield Beach and was a firefighter, suffered a brain aneurysm during the semifinal of the Panama City AVP Young Guns tournament in April 2010. In the six months that followed, Jones was on and off life support, placed in a medically-induced coma, suffered swelling of his brain and battled an array of complicated infections.

Jones had played in 21 AVP tournaments since 2000. Once ranked as high as No. 66, Jones also spent time on the Extreme Volleyball Professionals tour, as well as competing in the Men’s Open Division of the 2009 U.S. Open of Beach Volleyball.

Deerfield Beach’s Flavia Peraira, right, and Boca Raton’s Amanda Angermeier finishes third in the women’s open division of the second annual Ranse Classic.

Marcelo Ramos, who, along with Andre Melo and John Esposito, put on the local event this year, said there were about 150 players who took part in the beach volleyball tournament and an additional 30 who played in the men’s footvolley competition.

Ramos, 41, of Deerfield Beach, said the event was for a good cause. A benefit event in Jones’ honor was staged near the city’s pier last November and Jones passed away the day after the tournament ended on Nov. 8.

Ramos said the final figures from registration monies aren’t in yet; however, he expects the number raised to approach $15,000.

“This is very important,” said Ramos, who noted some of the proceeds are targeted for Kids in Distress. “It is good because the volleyball and the footvolley come together because they are part of the beach family. It is a very good group of athletes was stick up for each other.

“It’s going to grow into a big annual event,” said Melo, a longtime friend of Jones. “It is a good time. Everyone is coming out to support Ranse. Not only is it a competitive tournament with money, but it is also a reminder of what a great guy and competitor he was. It’s (about getting) together to celebrate his life.”

There was $6,500 in prize money, including $1,000 for first prize in the men’s division, co-ed 4s and footvolley, and $700 for first in the girls division. There were other prizes for the other divisions.

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