p1440 Developmental Program Nearly Doubles Size From Spring to Summer
On a cool and gray morning in Huntington Beach, Marcio Sicoli stood amongst a throng of men and women both younger and older, from all ends of the beach volleyball spectrum – college, professional, rookies, longtime professional, those who had only recently been introduced to the game – and it became clear that the p1440 developmental program was, well, it was developing. Quickly.
Less than six months prior, Sicoli had gathered players around in a similar circle. A much smaller – and much colder – circle. Fifteen women’s teams. Six men’s. Not a huge number, but it was a start.
Word has since spread, it seems. During tryouts for the summer session, which took place May 13 and 14 at the Huntington Beach Pier, 24 women’s teams and 11 men’s registered, vying for spots in the next period of the program.
“Hopefully we can get all of you,” said Sicoli, who is the director of the developmental program as well as the head coach at Pepperdine and of Kerri Walsh Jennings and Brooke Sweat. “I hope we can get all of you on the team. There’s a level of commitment.”
There could be any number of reasons as to why the developmental program is expanding at the rate it is. Perhaps it is the success being enjoyed by players both past and present, players who are now regularly appearing on FIVB medal round livestreams and on Amazon Prime during AVP broadcasts. Perhaps it’s because of the $16,000 divvied out to the top two men’s and women’s teams from the spring session. Perhaps it’s the world class coaching staff, owners of Olympic medals who have seen the best beach volleyball the world has to offer and, as such, have also developed a training regimen for other athletes to reach that same level.
Or perhaps it’s the equally developing list of sponsors, who provide personal training, beverages, supplements and, now recovery.
All elements of the program, it seems, are growing, improving, developing.
“You’re going to have the chance to train with the best coaches, the best teams,” Dain Wainer, a new coach on staff, said. “You get all the benefits – practice, recovery stations, so I’m really excited to start the new season.
“Let’s do this.”
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