Friday, July 31, 2015

USA Men Down Italy 11-9 To Finish Group Play At FINA World Championship

Nikola Vavic scored a team 
high three goals in the win over Italy

Team USA will take on Brazil in qualification round

July 31, 2015
Kazan, Russia - July 31 - The USA Men's Senior National Team capped group play at the FINA World Championship at 2-1 with an 11-9 victory over Italy. Nikola Vavic (Palos Verdes, CA/USC/Trojan) scored three goals in the win while McQuin Baron (North Tustin, CA/USC/Regency) recorded 11 saves in net in the win. Today's match will air later today on Universal Sports at 8pm et/5pm pt. Team USA takes second in Group B action and now moves on to meet Brazil on Sunday in the qualification round at 5:30pm local time. The match will stream live on at 10:30am et/7:30am pt.
Italy got off to a hot start in this match scoring with a little over a minute into the game for a 1-0 lead. Vavic responded for Team USA with a score and a 1-1 match. From there Italy pushed ahead with two straight goals from Alex Giorgetti for a 3-1 lead with 4:37 to play in the first. Team USA battled back scoring three of the next four goals to tie the match at 4-4 with just :19 to play in the first period. Bret Bonanni (Huntington Beach, CA/Stanford/Stanford), Tony Azevedo (Long Beach, CA/Stanford/NYAC), and Josh Samuels (Villa Park, CA/UCLA/NYAC) all came through in the run to even the score.
With 6:23 to go in the second period the United States took their first lead of the match on aJackson Kimbell (Long Beach, CA/Stanford/Newport) goal in close on a dish from Azevedo. Italy tied the match moments later on a goal from Pietro Figlioli but Team USA answered with scores from Vavic and Alex Obert (Loomis, CA/Pacific/Sac Polo) to grab a 7-5 lead with 3:08 to play. Two minutes later Italy came back with another score leaving the United States ahead just a goal at 7-6 going into halftime.
Team USA began to pull away in the third as Bonanni and Azevedo scored the first two goals of the period to build a 9-6 lead with 3:20 to go in the period. Francesco Di Fulvio delivered one of his four goals on the night to make it 9-7 going to the fourth.
Stefano Luongo struck early in the fourth to again bring the game within a goal, this time at 9-8. Team USA warded off the rally with goals from Vavic and Alex Roelse (Maarssen, Netherlands/UCLA/Bruin) for an 11-8 lead with 1:24 to play in the match. A late goal from Italy didn't factor in the decision and Team USA took the match 11-9.
The United States went 3/4 on the power play and did not attempt a penalty shot while Italy went 1/5 on power plays and 2/2 on penalty shots.
Scoring - Scoresheet
USA 11 (4, 3, 2, 2) N. Vavic  3. T. Azevedo 2, B. Bonanni 2, A. Obert 1, J. Kimbell 1, A. Roelse 1, J. Samuels 1
ITA 9 (4, 2, 1, 2) F. Di Fulvio 4, A. Giorgetti 2, P. Figlioli 1, S. Luongo 1, M. Aicardi 1
Saves - USA - M. Baron - 11 - ITA - S. Tempesti 9
6x5 - USA - 3/4 - ITA 1/5
Penalties - USA 0/0 - ITA 2/2

Uncovering the World of Old School Water Polo with the California Polytechnic State University Men's Water Polo Team

WHO'S TALKIN' NOW? One of the greatest examples of heart & desire happened at the 2008 Olympics...

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Important ALS Fundraiser: In Honor of Magna

Welcome to the Donation Page of

Gabriel Heiber Bendayan

Gabriel Heiber Bendayan Personal ImageGabriel Heiber Bendayan Personal Image
In honor of my dear friend Manga
The background story of these two photos:

The first one is of Marcos Santos, or as we all knew him, Manga, killing it during 

his water polo years at UCLA. Manga was a first class athlete. He was an NCAA
 division one national champion, he played professionally in Italy, and also
 internationally for the Brazilian National team. A beast, let me tell you.

The second photo shows enough skin to thoroughly embarrass me, and probably 

make a lot of you uncomfortable. But how many hugs of ten years ago do you 
remember so vividly, that the warmth of that embrace has stayed with you as 
if it had happened only a second ago? That day, Manga’s team, UCLA, dominated 
my team, Bucknell University. As the ritual of shaking hands at the end the game 
unfolded, I approached my high school teammate and friend, Manga. In the 
swimming pool he had just schooled me on water polo, but now he was about 
to teach me a different kind of lesson. First, Manga gave me the big hug you can 
see on the picture. He then complemented my team's good plays, and encouraged
 me to keep at it during the season. My ever-smiling, ever-friendly buddy did it again.
 A lesson in humility, friendship, and above all, brotherly love. Truth be told, 
I was not surprised by his elegance. He had set the bar so high for himself, 
so many times before, that you came to expect it. Manga was an amazing human being.

I am currently training to run the Chicago Marathon in honor of Manga. 

Please help me in carrying his legacy. The funds collected will go towards 
ALS research, as well as, supporting patients who, like he did, are now living with ALS.

Every single dollar is greatly appreciated.


Water Polo Life....

What happens 1 hour after drinking a can of coke.....

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SoFlo Water Polo Blog's All Time Post Hit Leaders

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I first found Beatrice Domond through Bill Strobeck’s favorite list on his Youtube channel. He’d liked a video of hers called “Sorry Jahmal Williams for running into you at Vans and sorry for liberating the background noise” – a largely self-filmed montage of non-spot tricks, set to Gil Scot Heron’s beat poem “The Revolutionary Will Not be Televised.” The video has great feeling, reminding me of “Video days” and other clips that capture skateboarding as it actually is. I watched it from time to time for a year, all the while thinking that I should interview its maker. I finally got around to doing so last week.
Within minutes of our first conversation, Beatrice showed herself to be a singular person; singularly comfortable with her skating, her values, and her self. Despite my sad subtle attempts to have her fess up to victim-hood, to talk about how hard it was to be a black, female, Christian-thinking skater – Beatrice insisted with dignity that she had always just “done her thing”, not letting her rare traits (rare for the skate world) restrain her. For these reasons and others, I believe she’s bound to leave a footprint in the world of skateboarding. 

How’d you find skateboarding, growing up in small town Florida?
It’s sort of an awkward story actually. I was seven, and it was picture day in school. You can pick whatever you want to pose with in your picture – a football, a baseball – they give you options – whatever your hobby is. And there was a skateboard, so I just grabbed it. I just saw it and it attracted me. I didn’t even skateboard yet. When I came home, I asked my dad for a skateboard I progressed from there. I’ve always been in my own little world and I didn’t really meet people skating until I was 13 or 14 when they made a skate park in my town. I mean, to this day I skate by myself.
But you are friends with Bill Strobeck right?
How did your connection with Strobeck come about?

A while back, I finished watching Photosynthesis and I just thought, this dude is so awesome. I gotta meet him. This was back when I thought, oh you can meet anyone in skating. I sent him one of my videos and he said, “Oh, this is so sick. Keep it up.” That was all I needed. Throughout the years, I emailed him my YouTube videos whenever I’d finish one.
So yeah, a couple years later, he asked “Hey, what’s your information?” and said, “Dill wants to hook you up with some, you know, some Alien Workshop stuff.” So from then I started talking to Dill, who flowed me FA. Then Cherry came out. I filmed some stuff for it, and the no-comply impossible got in the video.
What was it like meeting Strobeck?
That was so surreal. He’s the sweetest guy ever. He got my mom a taxi, so she could go back to the hotel. Then we skated to Supreme. My face was so cold that I couldn’t feel it. He was like, “Yo, you know, your skin is getting so dry…” I was just like, “Ahh, this is so embarrassing.” We ran into Alex Olson on the way. I was just like, “What?” This is my life right now? We skated in between cars, and made it to the House of Vans. When I was skating at Vans I bumped into Jahmal Williams. Afterwards, I made that video and edited it to the Gil Scott Heron song that Jahmal Williams skated to. So that’s why it was named “Sorry Jahmal Williams for running into you at Vans and sorry for liberating the background noise.”

Click here to watch video:

As someone who is religious, do you find the skateboard community hostile to religion?
Are they?
I don’t know. I’ve never felt that the skate community was hostile to it.
Sometimes I’ve seen anti-religious graphics, and there was a thing in The Skateboard Mag a few years ago about skaters who didn’t want any religious influence in skating…
First of all, I’m not religious. I’m a follower of Christ.
What is the difference between those two things?
In religion, you don’t love certain people. In order for me to be in a certain religion, I’d have to exclude a certain group. That’s not what I do. I don’t exclude anyone or dislike anyone, to make that clear. I love all people. Christ loved all people. I hope this is coming across well. I don’t want it coming across weird.
What do you think about P-Rod praying into his hat? For example.
Am I like P-Rod? Like, do I pray in my hat? Ha ha. No, I don’t have any religious things like that. I don’t have any little rituals. I just think if you have faith in something, if you desire something… Skateboarding demands a lot of faith in one’s self. I have to have faith in myself in order to skate.
Were you popular in high school? I feel like you rarely meet skaters that are like, “Oh, I loved high-school.”
I’m mostly a shy reserved person until I really get to know you, and I wouldn’t say that I’m popular, but I was well-liked. Everyone thought the skateboarding thing was amazing. I’m just gonna be completely honest with you though: There were only 20 kids in my class. And I was the only black girl. And I was the only skateboarder. But I mean, I was super good at athletics and I did well in school.
Did you ever feel ostracized being one of the few black kids at your school?
Yeah people think that. But my mother raised me so well. I see color, but it’s just like… My mom always just use to tell me that I was great and I could do anything. So I mostly just see myself as a person, doing what I want to do. I didn’t realize it til later. One day I looked around and I was like, “Oh, oh my gosh. I literally didn’t know.” I see people of color – Caucasian, Spanish, all that other stuff. But it doesn’t affect me. They’re all people.
Yeah, I’ll skate around and notice people looking at me. I’m just like “What are you looking at?” Then I have to really re-group and be like, “Oh, you’re six feet tall, you’re a girl, you’re black, and you skateboard.” People think it’s interesting. There’s so many blonde kids and then you just see me and I stick out like a sore thumb. It’s an advantage in a way and I appreciate it.
You have released quite a few clips of you skateboarding on YouTube. Do have a videographer? Who’s filming you?
Like, literally, it’s my little brother or… my mom. That’s legit who is filming. Or me. Ha ha.
So your parents psyched on your skating?
Oh yeah. My dad has always been psyched on it. And my mom is just like my ultimate supporter. My mom always told me, “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.” She like follows everyone on Instagram. Anytime I post something she tags everyone. She’ll tag Street League sponsors. Like, what are you doing mom? She just says, “Oh, you never know.” Haha.

Do you think that race plays into skate styles? I was talking with my friend the other day, and we were noticing there are like no black vert skaters.
I mean there’s a few. There’s Fernando Bransmark from Malmo, Sweden, there’s this dude Darin “Cookiehead” Jenkins. There are certain people of that color who don’t have access to a vert ramp, so they just take it to the streets. But a few people of color shred bowls and vert amazingly. Trust me though, when I was growing up, and I wanted to try vert – I looked all of this up. You need a little inspiration…
Growing up, did you tend to seek out girl skaters too?
I would look them up, same as the black guys who skate vert. It wasn’t really a search for them, but when you’re young you think everything matters. If you’re favorite skater is skating a 7.5, then you need a 7.5 with the exact gear, exact trucks, with the exact grip-tape, same shoes, same outfit so you can skate like him or her. As you grow up, you find yourself. You realize, “Oh I don’t need exactly what they have.” I do appreciate seeing girls and guys though, you know, Antwuan, Terry Kennedy, all of them. I do appreciate them.
How do you feel when you things like Thrasher King of The Road and you see them getting points for like making out with a Woman over 40?
That’s their thing. That’s cool. I wouldn’t want someone to stop me from putting Leonardo DiCaprio on a board, but… I don’t pay attention to it. As long as they’re not directing it towards me or viewing me in that way, that’s their thing. But these women should stand up for themselves. I do feel bad for some of the people they do that to. But some of the girls put themselves in that light.
Why do you think there aren’t that many girls that skate?
Either their parents won’t let them cause they’ll get hurt or they might think they can’t be girly with it. But that’s just a different area. I’m still a girly girl and all that stuff – but I just love to skateboard. I don’t think I have to act a certain way to be a skateboarder. You can skateboard and be you. I think a lot of girls don’t get that. They think “Oh, I’ll have to be kinda guyish” You really don’t have to be like that. You can be yourself and ride a skateboard. I still go on dates and meet guys. That’s me. I just like to kick-flip over stuff. That’s it.

Forget About Biting Those Gold Medals....

Lobster Mini-Season is under way!!

Initial reports of this years Lobster mini season are good with people limiting out last night and this morning. The coastal waters of the Atlantic Coast of Florida looked like a floating city with boats ranging from large sportfishers, open well offshore to flats boats and kayaks and paddle boarders. Weather while overcast couldn’t be any more ideal as far as wind, waves and water clarity go. Winds this morning at 8:00 am were NNW at 4 mph. For the rest of today and tomorrow winds will be puffing lightly out of the West at 8-to 9 mph.  The mini season ends tomorrow night at 12:00 pm and the regular season will open again for 8-months from August 6th, 2015 to March 31,. 2016

Eric Goldenberg: Gold Medalist @2015 Junior Olympics

Santa Barbara Polo Pals
18&U / Gold

Southeast Champions Shirts For Sale

The UCF Women's Water Polo team is selling Southeast Champions Tanks and T-Shirts for $30. 
If you'd like one contact Cheyenne Porter 407-314-2710

Former SFWPC player Guillermo Andres Ocasio earned the JO's MVP Award and a Gold medal in the 12&U Platinum Division

2015 Junior Olympic MVP

Guillermo Andres Ocasio (L) w/Eric Goldenberg @2015 Junior Olympics

Guillermo celebrating big brother Alberto's birthday 
@2012 Junior Olympics.

Gold Medalists 12&U SOCAL Boys

***Check out the thank you note in our comments below***

Banana Nutella Sushi



Hollywood Hills High Water Polo Team
UCF / School of Broadcast Journalism 

Greeks Rally To Upset USA Men @Worlds 11-10