14 show up for Mini Games tryout


Jermaine Salas spikes to Tony Atalig in last Saturday’s beach volleyball tryout for the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games 2022 at the Crowne Plaza Resort. (Contributed Photo)

A total of 14 players took part in the beach volleyball tryout for the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games 2022 held last Saturday at the Crowne Plaza Resort (formerly Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan).

Northern Mariana Islands Volleyball Association president Somia Quan said a total of nine men and five women aspirants to the CNMI National Beach Volleyball Team showed up for the tryouts, which was held from 8:30am to 12pm.

“It was an individual’s tournament so every athlete got a chance to play with every athlete in at least one game…For the men, it was one set to 15 points. For the women, it was one set to 21 points, no cap. We had five women show up to try out and about nine men. So all in all, the men had 10 rounds of two matches going and the women had seven rounds of one match going,” she said.

Quan said they made the men’s games shorter to acommodate more games and for the tournament to not drag on. “It’s back-to-back, constant games and since it’s not a traditional tournament, we wanted to make sure we were seeing their best play,” she added.

The nine men that took part in last Saturday’s tryout were Dylan Mister, Damian Palacios, M.J. De Belen, Antonio Atalig III, Jermaine Salas, Blake Mister, Simon Necesito, Tyce Mister, Logan Mister, Tyler Wilsey, and Bruce Berline. The five women that tried out were Toni Yamada, Chenny Lizama, Alyssa Pourmonir, Stacy Eno, and Savannah Delos Santos

Quan said the tryout was to essentially assess each athlete’s individual skills as well as to see how they adapt to playing with weaker players vs. stronger players.

“Does their game and attitude change? Can they recognize what needs to be done to correct errors? How much do they rely on their partner? Some athletes play awesome when they’re paired up with a strong player, but don’t do well playing with weaker players. So we measure adaptability, attitude, leadership, conduct along with individual skills in a tournament like this,” she said.

While it was a tournament, NMIVA didn’t really keep scores as it was more of a tryout than your usual tournament. “Because it wasn’t a traditional style tournament, the scores of the games themselves didn’t matter because there was no progression. Everyone played the same number of games but with different partners every time.”

The NMIVA president said she and other board members were pretty satisfied with how the first tryout for next year’s Mini Games panned out.

“Overall, we are happy with the turn out and how the tournament went. We plan to host another tournament of this format on Nov. 6. We anticipate more men and women to show up since it will now be our second one. We are also doing this style of tournament again so that the people who didn’t know about it or could not make the Nov. 23 tournament can still try out without being penalized. In a few weeks, we will host a different type of tournament where you come with your partner and play together throughout the whole tournament.”

Any individuals interested in trying out for the beach volleyball national team for the 2022 Pacific Mini Games, contact NMIVA at nmivolleyball@gmail.com.

Mark Rabago | Associate Editor
Mark Rabago is the Associate Editor of Saipan Tribune. Contact him at Mark_Rabago@saipantribune.com

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