“Events like this Buddies Tournament are what will help youth follow the right path. It brought so many families together, created so many friendships, and helped me, together with my staff, reinforce the importance of parents supporting their kids’ involvement in sports. Lots of parents contributed and attended which was especially encouraging.”
– Leti, Coach, and Director of Beyond Volley
“This was the 1st tournament for my daughter and it really amazes me, to be honest. I realized that all of the practices paid off. She killed it. – Parent
Why was the Buddies Tournament developed?
This all-day tournament was created to give middle schoolers, in grades 5-8, the opportunity to play competitively against local athletes, plus build stronger connections with their coaches, teammates, and students from different schools. For most it was their first tourney experience, providing a supportive forum to play at a different, fast paced level, and learn through live match play. Also, when athletes weren’t actively competing they worked the lines and scoreboard, which is part of Beyond’s constant focus on leadership development through sports. It encouraged a sense of responsibility and taught them the rules of the sport. When a young person was assigned to the lines, it required a lot of attention and awareness. The staff was incredibly impressed with the way they handled those new responsibilities.
What was the impact?
Overall, this first tournament exceeded expectations. The ball was in constant play the whole time, and the middle schoolers looked like professionals by the end of the day. They were engaged and happy. The Beyond Volley coaching staff, or mostly high school and college age youth who are part of our programs, helped make the games close, and competitive and really drew in the crowd.
- It supported 6 teams, with more than 70 benefiting kids in grades 5-8
- The event was organized by 13 Coach Mentors who are either currently h.s. participants or former players!
- It was a partnership effort between the UP Leonard School, Parthum Middle School and Beyond Volley. More schools to follow in 2023!
A group of Beyond Volley moms also contributed food, including pastelitos, and other healthy snacks and water for the staff as a sign of appreciation. That meant a lot! It’s clear after this event that we can grow a committed volunteer family network that is so necessary for team sports experiences!
When kids were not competing their responsibilities included:
- Learning how to keep score and report it to the coach in charge of creating the schedule;
- Call the lines (or out of bounds) during play, requiring them to pay close attention to the game;
- Other tournament setup and cleanup tasks; and
- Selecting medals for their teams and picking players for the special awards #teameffort!
- The following awards were given, including the very special Mami Raiza MVP Award
- “In It to Win It,” “MVP (Mami Raiza Award)”, “Volleyball Superstar,” “Humble Beast,” “Integrity,” & “Love for the Game.”
Reserve Your SPOT or TEAM for 2023, or reach out to Director, Leti to get involved and grow this important youth sports experience!