Southern Cal dudes rule the beach |

Southern Cal dudes rule the beach

It may not be a AVP Tour stop, but the action at Zephyr Cove over the weekend was definitely professional caliber. The championship game of the Lake Tahoe Beach Volleyball Cal-King tournament featured a tour player in Marcelo Duarte and the player who was the youngest player to become AAA caliber, Dan Styles.

The team of Duarte and Jim Alzina won a hard-fought championship game against Styles and his partner Lavelle Carter, 15-11.

“This is a great tournament,” Duarte said. “It’s lot more fun than the tour. Tahoe is a beautiful spot.”

Both teams in the championship game had to fight through injuries to make it to the final round.

Styles played through leg cramps during the semifinal and final games,

while Alzina was hospitalized Saturday for two-and-half hours with dehydration and or exhaustion.

“I was afraid for my life,” Alzina said. “I had heart palpitations. I had overheated before, but never heart palpitations. I had the shakes and I couldn’t control my body.

“The doctor gave me a couple of IV bags and told to keep hydrated and keep drinking water and I should be fine.”

Styles felt his legs cramp up in the semifinal round, but was able to help lead his team to a 18-16 win over the South Tahoe duo of Tony Vanbrackle and Tim Nestlerode.

“We were down 9-1 (in the semifinal),” Carter said. “I was like ‘Dude, do you want to quit? I don’t feel like getting spanked out here,’ and he’s like ‘No, dude, let’s do it.’ We kept rallying and getting a few breaks and he looked at me said, ‘I’m back.’ “

The injury cropped up again in the finals after Styles dove for a ball and came up lame. As he laid on his back massaging his leg, the injured star was brought a can of beer and some ice.

After a quick massage and a few sips, Styles got up and poured the rest of the drink over his head and was ready to attack the net.

The two teams battled back and forth before Alzina and Daurte emerged victorious. Despite Duarte’s experience on the professional level, he was quick to appreciate the caliber of play his opponents gave.

“A lot of these guys are trying to get on the tour,” Duarte said. “So, it’s not that big of a drop-off because most of the time it’s not financially possible for them to play at all the tour events.”

Styles and Carter’s play really brought the crowd into the contest as both the players did a lot of trash-talking to Alzina and Duarte But, the duo was undaunted by the verbal exchange and instead thrived on it.

“I like it. It adds to the whole element of the crowd,” Alzina said. “My style of play isn’t very exciting. I don’t hit the ball very hard. So those guys talking really adds an element of you wanting to beat them as opposed with the killing them with kindness thing.”

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around the Lake Tahoe Basin and beyond make the Tahoe Tribune's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User


See more