The Hedgehogs' Jen Douglas and Christen Steinkuler triumphed over seven other ladies duos to win outright Northern Mariana Islands Volleyball Association's 5th For the Love of Volleyball Tournament this past Saturday at Hyatt Regency Saipan.
The nine-team men's doubles division, meanwhile, concluded with some confusion as the finals tiebreaker match never officially took place though organizers eventually declared top-ranked Lover Boys as the overall winner.
The Top 3 men's and women's place finishers all received in-kind prizes provided by Hyatt Regency.
The Hedghogs eventually defeated East Coast's Heather Kennedy and Nicole Leblance, 21-12, in the finals after advancing past its rivals, 21-9, in the upper bracket semifinals.
The Hedgehogs also knocked off Blinded and Smokya in the opening rounds of double-elimination play.
As for the men's, Lover Boys' Tyce Mister and Russ Quinn advanced past the Bearded Clam Diggers in the first round before ousting eventual runner-up 72% in their first meeting, 21-10, but the latter survived through the lower bracket, taking out Priviet, Lucky Lefties, and Delta for another crack at top prize.
72%'s Bruce Berline and Chris Nelson went on to take the opening final set, 21-18, but some untimely exits by a player of each squad caused puzzlement.
Lover Boys' Quinn suffered an injury late in the previous set and was unable to continue, however 72%'s Nelson declared he was out and had to leave prior to the former's declaration.
But in the end, to go with the spirit of the tournament, Delta's Jazz Roskaw and Priviet's Clay McCullough-Stearns stepped in to fill the void.
Third place for the ladies division went to Smokya's Somia Quan and Kathy Winkfield, while Team Delta's Jesse Palacios and Roskaw came in third for the men.
Roskaw joined up with 72%'s Berline and McCullough-Stearns suited up for Lover Boys' Mister in the final tiebreaker match, in which the latter prevailed, 15-7.
Next on tap for NMIVA is the upcoming Marianas Cup Beach Volleyball Festival, which features the 7th Junior/Kids Marianas Cup event being hosted on Saipan this coming Saturday and Sunday at Fiesta Resort & Spa.
While the main event is being held for the first time ever in Guam this year, a number of professional beach volleyball players will still be coming to Saipan.
Pros like returning champs Jenki Hitabe and Yasuo Nakaya of Japan are expected to make an appearance and see action in an exhibition match in the Jr. Kids Cup this Saturday at 3am.
Other upcoming volleyball events include the finale of its Sunset Beach Volleyball coed tourney this Friday also at Fiesta Resort (5:30pm) and the 2013 Tinian Hot Pepper Festival 4-Person Beach Volleyball Tournament, scheduled this Saturday and Sunday on Tachonga Beach.
Cash prizes are up for grabs for the Sunset champions as well as the top three podium finishers of the Tinian event.
Onsite registration for Tinian's free tournament begins at 10am on Saturday morning with a targeted 1pm start time; games may start immediately after the opening ceremony.
Players are requested to form their own coed teams. Teams are being capped at five members and at least one member of opposite gender must remain on the court at all times.
The competition begins with various rounds of pool play to determine bracket rankings leading up to its single-elimination championship playoffs.
Tentative game point is set at 21 with a cap of 25 and a must-win-by-two rule in effect, however depending on the turnout, tournament organizers reserve the right to adjust the scoring format in order to ensure a timely finish.
Standard Federation DeVolleyball beach volleyball rules also apply and serves must rotate.
Pre-registration forms for Saipan players can be obtained through Frank Tudela at the Marianas Visitor Authority office (664-3210); travel specials are available for interested Saipan players.
For more information, email Vida Borja at 433-9365 email@example.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.