Sunday, January 1, 2012

AS PROMISED: The 2011 USA Volleyball Open Nationals Gold Men's Champion Match from Dallas, TX

May 29-April 2, 2011: Dallas, TX


Footage from the 2011 Open Gold Men's Volleyball Championship Match between GEVA Region Champion, Creole out of Queens, NY and The New England Region Champion, GoNation out of Connecticut.

This is one of the best RIVALRY matches I have seen in a long time! Many of the players from both squads have long histories of playing with or against each other. It was made especially fun, thanks in part to the crowd, who were pulling for both sides for much of the tournament.

Some back story to each team for you.


Originally Creole was created by Haitian volleyball players who lived here in the United States and Canada. If you were to Google Search Creole Volleyball, you will find that there are many of them around the country, especially in the north east. The founder of this club (EVC), was once a player for Creole on two of its teams and has had many thrills with other Creole members.

The current leader of Creole is Rony Gilot. Rony is also a former member of the Haitian National Team and the last setter to ever lead Queens College to an Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Playoff match against Penn State in the mid/late 1990's.

The name, Creole, comes from the language that is spoken on the island of Haiti. It is a language rooted in French but has a mixing of other ethnic tongues tossed in, such as Spanish.

The last time Creole made it to the Gold Medal Final at the Adult Open Tournament was in 1994. That year they were lead to a championship victory, by then Penn State All American, Ivan Contreras.

Creole has hosted many of the best volleyball players in the north east for years and has always fostered a love of the sport, unmatched, in the New York Metropolitan area, well, until Empire Volleyball Club (shameless self promotion). Today Creole has a total of seven (7) teams. There are five men's teams; the open team (Red), three "AA" level teams (White, Blue, Black & Future) and one (1) "A/BB" team (Stack). The other team is the longest standing women's team in the New York City Area Creole's "AA" women's team. Some of the region's best women have been apart of the group. Many of whom have also coached at some of the highest levels in collegiate volleyball, from division two to division one in the NCAA.

Now GoNation

GoNation was started by former Creole member Danny Goncalves, during his stint as the head volleyball coach for his alma mater, the University of New Haven in Connecticut. The club itself is only about four years old but has grown quickly due to the diligence of Danny and now his brother, Kevin Goncalves, a former setter for both the University of New Haven and IPFW, in Fort Worth, IN. Kevin is currently playing professionally, on a first division team, in his father's native land of Portugal.

The brothers Goncalves have great ties to the Florida area, along with two neighboring local, USA Volleyball, regions of NERVA (New England Region Volleyball Association) and our region of GEVA. With those kind of ties, and the marketing sense to drive GoNation to the top, the team and club has been built quickly and with solid athletes. Players such as Theo Brunner (UC Santa Barbara) and Hudson Bates (George Mason) have played with GoNation.

In fact BOTH Goncalves brothers have had small stints with Creole and have had solid success with in their times on the court with Creole. The club of GoNation, like ours here at Empire, is just another way to foster the growth of our sport and look to make it fun for all.

The Match

It was a great match!!! From rally 1 to rally 200 (approximate total between the two teams overall) it was one of the best, fun and "connected" matches I have ever witnessed. "Connected" in terms of crowd involvement. Each team had a band of fans, mutual friends and assorted regional ties. It was a fantastic display of support from the audience.

As I mentioned before, many of the athletes on both teams have some form of history together. The brother Goncalves, have each played with Creole at a points in history. Hudson Bates, George Mason alum is a Virginia native that comes up to NYC to play in various beach tournaments throughout the years, are just some examples.

Rich Carmerlengo, of Long Island, NY, went west coast for college and brought along two of his former teammates/comrades/former opponents to Creole this year, Christopher Ongay (who played at Long Beach City College with Rich) and Alika Derego, a Hawaiian native who played at Orange Coast Community College, LBCC's rival school. As you watch the video, pay close attention to Alika, that man is one heck of a libero!!!

Factor in that many of these young guns of volleyball, have played against each other in past USA Open Nationals, and in college. This had the makings of a great heavy weight battle for the Gold Medal at Nationals. Dallas, Texas was ready for some volleyball rock versus some volleyball reggae.

Who will win, the young up starts from Connecticut or the long standing veterans from New York City?

As a special note, we here at EVC, wish both clubs incredible success in the future, and after you watch these videos of each set you will see why both teams have had such a great run at the tournament!

Please enjoy the videos and see you all on the courts.


GoNation (New England Region)
Pos # Player School
S 3 Kevin Goncalves IPFW
OH 4 Hudson Bates GMU
OH 6 Jason Wiens UCSB Set #1-2
M 23 Kyles Masterson Penn State
M 5 Theo Brunner UCSB
RS 10 Mark Dusharme USC
L 1 Eric Lucas GMU
OH 8 Patrick Durbin Ball St Set #3-5
Creole (Garden Empire Region)
Pos # Player School
S 2 Matt Werle Juniata
OH 13 Jordan Varee St Francis PA
OH 4 Justin Brubaker Philly Bible
M 14 Cal Palumbo Springfield
M 8 Rich Carmerlengo Hope International
RS 9 Srdjan Narazdin Long Beach
L 1 Alika Derego Orange Coast
DS 11 Danny Yin Queens College Set #3-5
MH 6 Christopher Ongay Long Beach CC Set #5


Listed in the descriptions of each video, are: Player names and number, along with school were they play(ed).
For full descriptions go to by double clicking the one of the videos

Set #1 
(Not Complete)

Set #2 - Part 1

Set #2 - Part 2

Set #3 - Part 1

Set #3 - Part 2

Set #3 - Part 3

Set #4 - Part 1

Set #4 - Part 2

Those are the first four (4) sets folks. I will upload set five (#5) later this month.

I hope you enjoy watching these. videos!!!

Happy New Year folks....

Go EVC!!!

1 comment:

  1. I love the progression in editing! First a soundtrack, then scores and subs, and then removal of "dead" time. Well done Pat Ditty!