Rodriguez and Haddock going for a triple in Cayman Islands
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, April 22, 2014 – The sixth edition of the double-gender Cayman Islands Beach Volleyball Tournament marks the start of the 2014 NORCECA Circuit at Seven Mile Beach of Grand Cayman on Friday.
Puerto Ricans Roberto Rodriguez and Erik Haddock will be going after their third crown in a row in the men’s segment of the competition, traditionally the first of the year since its inaugural event in 2009.
Last year, the Rodriguez/Haddock tandem won the crown with a 21-16, 21-18 victory over the USA’s combo of Todd Rogers and Ryan Doherty. The previous year, the Puerto Ricans defeated Canadians Samuel Schachter and Maverick Hatch 21-19, 21-15 to take the title.
Rodriguez also won a silver medal here in 2011 playing alongside Christopher Underwood.
Rogers, the gold medal winner of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing along with Phil Dalhausser, will take part again in the Cayman Islands this year with Theo Brunner as his partner.
The team of Rogers and Brunner is one of the two USA entries in the men’s tournament with the other consisting of Will Montgomery and Stafford Slick.
While the men’s field has seen multiple winners in the short history of the competition, in the women’s segment the Cayman Islands has had a different winning pair in each of the five previous occasions.
Veteran Heather Hughes, a three-time gold medalist in NORCECA events, will play together with Christal Engle as one of two American women’s teams. Tealle Hunkus, who won in Aruba in 2013, will team up with Kim Dicello.
Last year, the Canadian duo of Jamie Broder and Kristina Valjas crushed Jenny Kropp and Whitney Pavlik of United States 21-15, 21-13 to claim the gold medal.
Fifteen men’s teams and sixteen women’s teams have been registered to participate in the opening event of the year. Teams will be divided into four pools with the top two teams from each pool advancing to the single elimination bracket.
Past winners at Cayman Islands:
Yea Men Women
2009 Jason Wight/Michael Bruning USA Kirenia Ballar/Nirian Sinal CUB
2010 Martin Reader/Ray Sewell CAN Yarleen Santiago/Dariam Acevedo PUR
2011 Richard van Huizen/Josh Binstock CAN Brooke Hanson/Lauren Fendick, USA
2012 Roberto Rodriguez/Erik Haddock PUR Bibi Candelas/Mayra García MEX
2013 Roberto Rodríguez/Erik Haddock PUR Jamie Broder/Kristina Valjas CAN
Registered Men’s Teams: Renaldo Knowles/Muller Petit (Bahamas), Andrew Hinchey/Ryan Vandeburg (Canada-A), Cameron Wheelan/Michael Plantinga (Canada-B), Shervin Rankin/Richard Campbell (Cayman Islands-A), Olney Thompson/Phillippe Deslandes (Cayman Islands-B), Julio Alvarez/Rooper Espinoza (Costa Rica), Carlos Escobar/David Vargas (El Salvador), Daron Ofxord/Akim Andrews (Grenada), Erick Garrido/Andy Blanco (Guatemala), Roberto Rodriguez/Erik Haddock (Puerto Rico), St Calire Hodge/Shawn Seabrookes (St Kitts & Nevis), Julian Bissette/Joseph Clercent (St Lucia), Colin Bernard/Fabien Whitfield (Trinidad & Tobago), William Montgomery/Stafford Slick (United States-A), Todd Rogers/Theodore Brunner (United States-B).
Registered Women’s Teams: Claudia Seguin/Brandie Wilkerson (Canada-A), Melissa Humana/Taylor Pischke (Canada-B), Cristin Alexander/Jessica Wolfenden (Cayman Islands-A), Chante Smith/Ileann Powery (Cayman Islands-B), Natalia Alfaro/Karen Cope (Costa Rica), Diana Romero/Marcela Avalos (El Salvador), Lourdes Ramirez/Natalia Galan (Guatemala), Stephanie Burnside/Gloria Iztel (Mexico-A), Paulette Cruz/Vanessa Virgen (Mexico-B), Jackeline Toruño/Elia Torres (Nicaragua), Lina Bernier/Valeria Cajigas (Puerto Rico), Shanicia Dyer/Brenda Allen (St Kitts & Nevis), Diana Hamilton/Jamilla Lansiquot (St Lucia), Ayana Dyette/Nancy Joseph (Trinidad & Tobago), Heather Hughes/Christal Engle (United States-A), Tealle Hunkus/Kimberly McGiven (United States-B).