Kevin McColloch reaches for a block. April Ross April Ross R led all ladies with kills. Sean Rosenthal Nobody had more attacks than "Rosie" Here he squeaks a shot by Stafford Slick. Irene Pollock Irene was all over the court during her matches. She tallied 71 digs in clawing to the semis. Jeremy Casebeer The sun came out after a 6 hour lightning delay during Saturday's play.. Nick Lucena L pops the ball over Jeremy Casebeer.
April Ross April Ross can do it all. She was the leader in kills and service aces for the weekend and chipped in 61 digs in leading team mate Whitney Pavlik to the title. Irene Pollock One of Irene Pollock's 71 digs.
Stafford Slick Stafford Slick wears special goggles when he plays. He also plays the game a little higher than most. He and team mate Billy Allen made it to the semis this week. Irene Pollock Irene Pollock with the secret serving signals Nick Lucena This is Nick Lucena's 16th season on the sand. The Austin victory was his 15th.
Karolina Marciniak Karolina Marciniak averaged 1. Amanda Dowdy Amanda Dowdy sweating in the late sun. Jeremy Casebeer Jeremy Casebeer serves it up during the only night match during the main draw. Now he's giving the beach a go. So far he's holding his own. He has 54 kills and 45 digs this week playing alongside Maddison McKibbin. Kim Dicello Ross L and Dicello battle it out at the net in the finals.
Both have been playing for 13 seasons Ross notching her 55th career win and Pavlik her 12th. Trevor Crabb Trevor Crabb pumps the crowd up during the finals.
Nick ended up with 74 kills. Phil Dalhauser This is what it must look like trying to get the ball past the 6'9" Dalhauser. Nick Lucena Nick Lucena averaged 5. The was a big one in the finals. Sign Up for our Newsletter Don't get stuck on the sidelines!
Sign up to get exclusives, daily highlights, analysis and more—delivered right to your inbox! Email Address Enter valid email address Password. Email Address Enter valid email address. Zip Code Please enter zip code or country for newsletter signup. Password Must be at least 6 characters and contain a number and an uppercase and lowercase letter. Confirm Password Passwords must match. For every genetically gifted physical specimen who turns into a success story by not just making it, but thriving on the highest level, there are thousands similar whose ambitions wilt due to misfortune with size, finances or simply just not being good enough.
Others reach the pros, but have their careers cut short due to injury or not finding the right team fit, amongst other reasons. Take this as an example: A path that straightforward to success, however, is an aberration. Budinger finds himself now not preparing for a grueling basketball offseason, but rather perched in the stands on an NYC pier overlooking dual volleyball courts—one built by the AVP Association of Volleyball Professionals a couple days before for the New York City Open and the other permanently residing on the pier over to go along with a miniature golf course and a dog park.
The white-gray skies are accompanied by a light breeze from the neighboring Hudson River whispering around the Pier 26 court. Budinger was a rare case: Several universities yearned at the opportunity to don the then-strawberry-blond-curled prodigy with their jersey colors in both basketball and volleyball. He first tried out basketball around six years old, and then added volleyball to his repertoire five years later. His older sister Brittanie and older brother Duncan each played both sports, and the youngest Budinger wanted to follow in their footsteps.
But his rapid progression in both sports can be credited to his mother and father. So for basketball I was always a guard and then for volleyball I was an outside hitter. Because of that, I was able to really learn those skills and it helped me as I got older and older. Even when I got to high school, I stuck with those positions. I give a lot of credit for that.
The Los Angeles schools offered him the chance to play both sports. Yet in the end, his connection with then-Wildcats basketball coach Lute Olson was the major driving factor in his commitment. It was tough for Budinger to put volleyball in the backseat, especially after he had recently captured his national accolade.
Yet, he also thought his best chance at success was sticking with just one athletic obligation. The Pistons took him 44th and then he was promptly traded to the Rockets later on draft night.
It was very soft on your legs and your knees and your ankles, but also it was really good for your muscles. The two would frequently be teammates in four-on-four casual matches. Rosenthal had represented the U. Despite Budinger having no professional volleyball experience, Rosenthal was rather impressed with his play. The seeds of a radical idea were planted shortly after at Shellback Tavern—a beachside watering hole gracing the edge of the Manhattan Beach pier.
The basketball player who recorded a The injuries eroded his confidence in the later stage of his NBA career, and then effectively ended it. Not yet ready to give up on his hoop dreams, however, Budinger explored options elsewhere.
He ended up choosing Baskonia in Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain. I remember my first couple months there, my first two months, I was having a really difficult time with it just getting adjusted. So I had a whole chunk of the day by myself in a foreign country trying to waste time until practice. I really had to pick up some hobbies, watched a lot of movies, did a lot of walking, lot of going to different coffee places in the morning just to waste some time. While he was waiting for offers from prospective teams, he received a phone call with a different type of offer in mind.
After seeing how well they co-existed on the court, Rosenthal made up his mind. But why would a year-old Olympian take a chance at this point in his career with a first-time pro? They went on to win their next three matches at the event before falling in their final contest vs. Budinger and Rosenthal are already in a tricky position for a Tokyo Olympics spot with the U. One of the two spots will likely go to Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena.
The other is viewed as up for grabs, but it will be a dogfight, especially for a team that was established only a few months ago. But right now the way I approach volleyball right now is one day at a time and one tournament at a time.