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SMACK IN DA MIDDLE-NAH South West Regional Qualifier 2013

Saturday, April 20, 2013 - Sunday, April 21, 2013
Host club: 
Fresno Bike Polo
Contact info: 
(559) 394-5285
Court size: 
2 Multi-Use Courts (Tennis Court size)

peDal jUnkies/Fresno Bike Polo is proud to announce that we will be hosting the 2013 NAH South West Regional Qualifier. SMACK IN DA MIDDLE!!!!!!!!

Saturday-April 20, 2013
Sunday- April 21, 2013

Saturday AM Bracket – be at the courts by 9am, games start by 9:30am
Saturday PM Bracket – be at the courts by 12:30pm, games start by 1pm
Sunday Double Elim Bracket – be at the courts by 9am, games start at 10am
If you are not at the courts by start time, we will start without you. (sorry)
Breakfast and Lunch will be provided on Saturday & Sunday.

Cary Park
4750 N. Fresno St.
Fresno, CA 93710

32 Team Capacity
*****REGISTRATION OPENS THURSDAY FEB. 14, 2013 (the day you fell in love with POLO). Only register as a full team, no single players will be registered. Register at http://hardcourtbikepolo.org Last day to register is MARCH 31, 2013!

$75 registration fee/team + $10 NAH fee/team

2 Side-by-Side Multi-use courts (tennis court size). The courts are fenced in and have a 2 foot board running all the around. Some modifications will be made prior to the tournament.
We're still working on a possible 3rd court.


Cary Park Fresno, CA
United States

Signed up

Hella Yeah

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

Yeah. Let's use the big court this time.

Lets use the Air Conditioning this time

Seems like a good time to come back to Cali.

fuck yeah, i wanna stay in that same shitty hotel!

hell yes on shitty motel + pool. we gotta block it out and get everyone at one place. parking lot after party in the back of whoevers truck bed that was was freaking great

I play for hugs

I got deceived last year and missed it. This year I am IN !
See ya there!

Lefty Bullshit!

Someone be on my team.

are canadian teams allowed to play?! also, 3v3?


apaperplane... definitely want you to come out!! bring the whole club if you want. we have an International Airport, cheap hotels, and lots of polo for you...EVERYBODY'S WELCOME TO ROLL UP!!

As far as the format of the tourney; it'll be 3v3, Double Elimination, Round Robin. Last year we got 15 teams, hoping for more this year....


holy smokes, really excited. we'd have to do some fundraising but i think it would badass! i'll bring it up with the boys and see if we can get 1-2...maybe 3 prairie teams involved!! stay in touch!


when would you need to know by :)


It's 6 months away still so no rush. we had some of the players register the day of so no worries. you can check out the pics from last year on facebook.com/pedaljunkies. just find the Smack In Da Middle folder. can't wait to SMASH MALLETS with ya!


Ive been to a Fair amount of tournys, this was one If the best run and very fun tournament. Fresno is a nice aggie based city in central California. It has beautiful weather last year was a fluke heatwave. Even If its hot playin in the evening is very nice. You folks from cold weather areas are encouraged to come to this. You wont regret it.

Deaddog- sacbikepolo

I'll play if I'm on Machine's team. . .

Tickets are real cheap, Ive never been to california, anyone need a 3rd?

Get rad

Coachella is the same weekend. Weigh in if you think I should do Fresno instead.


Once I added up the cost of Coachella vs. seeing 20 of the bands at local shows. It's cheaper and arguably better to see the acts individually in your home town.

Then I started playing polo. All my indie band shirts are now buried under my polo tourney shirts.

If its at all a debate, you should probably just go to coachella...

SO THE NEWS IS OUT..THIS YEAR'S SMACK IN DA MIDDLE IS THE SOUTH WEST REGIONAL QUALIFIER!! YEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!! Info is on the way. Talking with Machine and my mentor Joel about how it's going to go down. Registration will be announced as soon as we figure it out.... based on this weekend's friendly, you have to keep on the lookout cause i think the procrastinators might be cheering us on from the sidelines.
Teams from CA, NV, AZ, NM, and UT... sorry to the teams that I invited previous to being nominated to host a qualifier. I promise to host a World's tourney one day so everyone will be here in the 'No to smash mallets.


Looks like I'll be coming to Fresno after all.

Yea boi

discount code: azpolo15
for 15% off @ state bike co.

Missed this one, was hoping on a Qualifier in May. Will be in Europe end of April (with a cool tourney in Vienna though). Argh..

Most likely a loose canon here
If anyone needs a third, let me know!..

Thank you to Jon and Sarah, instead of dancing my heart out at coachella(week 2) I will be playing my heart out that weekend.


Updated the event with some more info.... Registration starts this Polo Thursday 2/14/13 so get your team ready. Only full teams will be registered, so if you're a single player, get to work. Register by emailing me at smackindamiddle@gmail.com

See ya on the Courts!


sorry for changing it up again.... in order to register, you must go through http://hardcourtbikepolo.org
the 14 teams that already hit me up, gotcha already. we'll be transferring the info over ourselves. HURRY UPPPPP!!!!!


Single lefty looking to join up with the killer squad, I can power or finesse the ball in the goal, rarely dab, and I will always give it my all

Lets do this Josh, Lets fins another lefty.

Deaddog- sacbikepolo

autumnbomb -Capitol Bike Polo and I are looking for an awesome third!

looks likes im a loose canon.

give blood. play polo.

Who's coming with me?

brought to you by the good people at morningstar

We can make sure you're not coming alone...


Looking for room the weekend of Smack.
I want to stay with everyone.
Made this, http://tinyurl.com/bau93sw, check it out.
Let me know your thoughts


Keep in mind that if we can get ten rooms we maybe entitled to a group rate.


Anyone wanna team up or need à third? Hit me up!

Deaddog- sacbikepolo

two questions:
1) both courts are on the tennis surface?
2) how many teams have registered?

75$ registration fee without 4 foot boards... As a qualifier i feel the court should be the main priority.

Joey wrote:

75$ registration fee without 4 foot boards....


Does it say somewhere that there will not be 4 foot boards? No it doesnt. So whats with the scaremongering.Tea is on top of this Tournie so less of the negativity and more of the
"Hella yeah Fresno , what can we do to help"

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

"The courts are fenced in and have a 2 foot board running all the around." In the court description, is where it says. I feel that having fences with 2 foot boards is not only inhibiting our play, but also a safety issue. I would be happy to do anything i could on top of paying registration to make this happen...

Maybe they mean the boards are running a fence? Seriously though I can't remember paying 25 bucks for the qualifier last year. Especially if boards are not a factor in the price

2 Side-by-Side Multi-use courts (tennis court size). The courts are fenced in and have a 2 foot board running all the around.....................< Some modifications will be made prior to the tournament>.......................
We're still working on a possible 3rd court

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

For those interested, here's some math on putting on a 2 court tourney with 2' boards or 4' boards.

A polo worthy sheet of plywood costs about $25 a sheet. A 2' tall, 60'x130' court requires 20 sheets. So, two 2' tall courts, PLYWOOD ONLY, costs $25x40sheets=$1000. If you don't have 82 volunteers to hold each seam, you might have to buy some hardware to keep that inexpensive plywood together. Fortunately for Fresno, 2x4's only cost $3 each! 60 per court X 2 courts x $3 = $360 and a tub of screws is another $40

2 Courts with 2' boards $1400:
studs/screws $400
plywood(40) $1000

2 Courts with 4' boards $2600:
studs/screws $600
plywood(80) $2000

Registration will pull in $2400. Which would your club choose to do?

PS - One Pete is enough.

Qualifiers should be $100 per team. They are s o much work for the local club. Thanks Fresno for all you do. My concern was only board height. Never cost.

Yes, Fresno is most likely subsidizing some of the tournament cost at $75 a team. Thank you Fresno!

Until we can afford to build perfect courts and start caring about Joey's safety, compromises have to be made.

Maybe pete could be one of the boards? ;)

Deaddog- sacbikepolo

IF YOU ALREADY REGISTERED FOR SMACK-IN-DA-MIDDLE BY EMAIL PLEASE GO TO HARDCOURTBIKEPOLO.ORG and register your team there> This will register you and enable you to register a team in almost any other tournie simply and effectively for evvva and evva.

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

First off, I want to thank you guys for the input. This is my first time doing something at this level so all suggestions are appreciated.

#1: We are working hard on the getting the boards built up to 4 feet. Machine's the MAN! Home Depot has agreed to help us out with a small donation of supplies, but it won’t be enough to cover the whole cost of both courts.

#2: That’s where the registration money comes in. We’ll be using the registration money to help with the park reservation, food, drinks, boards, supplies, etc. You’ll be fed both days, drinks (water, soda, gatorade) will be provided all weekend. Believe me, we didn’t take this on to make money; we took this on for the love of polo. Oh and big thanks to Jinna from Thomas Bikes as she will be sponsoring the Insurance for our tournament.

#3: Before we set the registration fee, we looked at the other qualifiers going down and this is the same amount everyone else is charging (DPI last year was $75.00/team, which is $3.33 less than our event for each player).

I’m always open to suggestions; especially if it’s going to make this tournament better. Joel, Creamy & Machine have always helped me keep the polo puzzle together, so you're welcome to chime in. You can hit me here or reach me directly at (559) 394-5285. If you have ever come to Fresno, you know we take of you to the fullest.

See ya in April!


pedaljunkies wrote:

we take care of you to the fullest.

Apparently $75 also includes a happy ending. Fresno just raised the bar!

LA has like 200' of 4' boards stored. We could work out bringing them up, especially if it'll drop the cost down to the more reasonable $65/team + $10 NAH fee* that all the other qualifiers have been/will be. My main concern is if we're at the same park as last year- that grommet ass crack down the middle of the court was okay for a friendly, but not so much for a qualifier. It ate enough forks and wheels without seriously competitive play going down.

*FWIW, always make your registration cost divisible by 3. You've been playing long enough to know how many players are on a team.


That is a very gracious offer from LA. If someone in LA has a truck and can arrive Thursday and leave Monday with a load of ply, I would assume Tea would pay their gas money (i.e. free trip to Fresno). However, that is for Tea to offer, not me. Anything more involved (rentals, two trips, a happy ending) quickly shifts the focus from paying to borrow plywood to paying to own the plywood.

Thank you LA!!!

What city has put up 4' boards along a chain link fence?

4' is really really good when you're building in the open like recent DPI, BWB, WSI. Doesn't make much sense inside a tennis cage. A solid 1-2' base at the bottom that rebounds the ball off the wall is perfect. Allows people to sit & watch. I'm thinking about courts like Portland.

I'd encourage doing what's possible to make clean edges along the fence/board/walls -- where they meet the court surface. Almost all the walls at Fresh Meat had a ditch that sucked the ball against the wall. Exposed chain link or a ridge along the wall (JoCo has both) sucks because one has to get the ball off the wall before you can do anything with it -- giving defenders time to crowd the ball and the game is much slowed. Best is when the ball naturally rolls away from the wall and no time is wasted breaking it free.

polojoel wrote:

What city has put up 4' boards along a chain link fence?

MKE did for the 2012 NA's. That is the only place I've seen it.


The Worlds in Seattle... Pictures anyone.

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

I dont agree Joel. Fences have quite a bit of downfalls. Handlebars get caught, fences hurt, and the ball doesnt rebound as well. I dont really care about how easy it is for the spectators to watch.

I don't think anyone disagrees that 4' boards is the best option. Besides offering a stream of unconstructive criticism, what can you offer Fresno to make this a reality?

LA, SF, and PHX all have wood. The big problem is how it gets to Fresno and where does the money come from to transport the wood hundreds of miles. Is spending hundreds of dollars on fuel and a truck a wise use of your registration fee? Wouldn't it be better for Fresno to own some wood so they can offer a lower registration fee at their next tournament? What about all of the extra time that multiple volunteers will take to load, transport, unload, load, transport, and unload borrowed wood? Is their time trivial? Do you plan to be there helping them every step of the way?

Joey, please share with us your solution.

I dont have any other suggestions to add. But like i said im willing to help anywhere i can, whether that be unloading boards or helping load, or anything else. Also i think 100$ registration isnt a bad idea.

Thank you, Joey. I was hoping you were holding back on a brilliant idea! If someone invented vitamin beer and sponsored polo, maybe 4' boards wouldn't be so difficult.

Welcome to the brain teaser that is, "How can I have two or more perfect courts right now with limited resources?" Keep thinking.

Fresno is a really good answer to that question. The park and courts are good and the town is great in terms of travel expenses for everyone.

This internet frenzy about boards should stop now please. The Fresno crew know what a good court looks like and will do their best.

I'm sure Tea has read this and will reach out to anyone who has offered to help.

Jacking the registration fee has downsides. I favor keeping it as low as possible. If a few people feel strongly about certain things then they should make it happen without passing the cost to everyone.


Dang jojo but you look so awesome out there! Guess we can stand on phonebook or somthing.

Deaddog- sacbikepolo

Great that we are all in this together. It will be fantastic to have 4 foot boards so we can compete at the same level in The South West qualifier as we will be at the NA's and Worlds.
Chain link fence with 2 foot boards is great for regular tournies and pick up but if you look at the few stats we have for last year with the same set up we have Tsunami busting a rib off a pole in Santa Cruz and Elena (GVA)breaking her collarbone in Lexington , also on chain link fence with poles.
Tea is getting a list together of shit required , sizes , help needed etc and then we can all make this a top qualifier together like we know we can.Hella yeah Fresno

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

If everyone wants 4ft boards just charge more. Down for a bill a team.

discount code: azpolo15
for 15% off @ state bike co.

haaaa we could do like an "adopt a highway" program - "adopt a board." every player has to bring one 4x8 sheet with them.

I play for hugs

Maybe you should gift Fresno 1G, Julio. Your profile picture does have you holding a wad of cash. Sharing is caring.

Haha I'm a baller on a budget!!!

But a bill a team isn't bad at all if you really can't find $33.33 a player then I guess there is no reson for you to play cuz you won't be able to afford to go to NA. Haha

discount code: azpolo15
for 15% off @ state bike co.

We have to have 4 foot boards at the back of the court and 2 foot boards at the sides .....
If we want 4 foot boards, we as a region need to make it happen together NOT Fresno alone
Sign up PEEPS

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

Honestly guys, 4' boards are not the main issue here. The main issue is the inch wide crack of DOOM and death to forks that runs down the center of those tennis courts, coming from someone who played on them and had a teammate lose his bike to them in the middle of a tournament. Can it quikrete?

If the budget already allow for 4' boards along the back, maybe I could bring up our 4' board to fill in the sides? I'm pretty sure I can find someone old enough to rent a truck for me to use. I don't have work off, but if it's only a couple sides, maybe the boards could go up early Saturday morning?


Not to worry, this problem is taken care of. The crack will be filled with some sort of quickcrete and possibly sealed to make the ball transactions even smoother. There will be no obstructions on the court like last time (benches light posts etc) all of these obstacles will be covered by 4 foot boards. We are also working on bleachers for all of the spectators ;) but that is obviously a second priority issue.

just want to give everyone an update on what's happening out here in Fresno (we prefer Fres-Yes).
-We're working our little hearts out to get the board situation squashed. Believe it or not, we (I & the rest of Fresno Bike Polo) agree that four foot boards would be awesome
- Also, Mama PJ and I are working with the city to close all cracks on the courts, get all lights replaced, as well as having the bathroom lit, cleaned and supplied with toilet paper before the event.
Other than that, we're on a roll!!! Thanks for all the opinions/suggestions/frustrations. Just motivates us to do that much better.

SIGN UP!!!!!!!!!!! and see you in April


Thank you Fres-yeah! I'm pretty sure having toilet paper in the restroom violates an NAH rule. We have traditions to uphold.

I may not be able to attend the Cascadia qualifier. Not completely committed to this tournament yet, but I'm very interesting in coming down if I can find a team with a realistic shot at 5th/6th place. Would like to figure this out while flights are still cheap.
Talents include goaltending, scoring shitty goals, and crashing hard into the end boards.

Damn, i woulda picked you up in a heart beat.

Yeah, I was set on throwing down in Cascadia until the most recent date change... Dang. Let's keep each other in mind next time there's a tourney on the West Coast, eh?

For sure man.

Nevermind, I gotta stay home. Sad to miss another Californian polo vacation. :(
Hope you guys have a great tournament!

almost a month away... working out the kinks, talking with Machine and the NAH. THings are looking pretty coooooool. see you guys soon


Poster is dope

Need a cascading third? I am looking to qualify

Let's qualify then Jagwolf...

Any consensus on where we want to stay? I'd like to have a single hotel with all the polo players. Preferably between 40-70 bucks a night.

- Sincerely
Olsen Aviles

I mite just run out of red ink circling this date on my calendar

Ramada Inn is less then a mile away ( roughly 0.5 miles from court) and is $74 a night, might be able to room with multiple people to lower that cost. I also have place on my floor to crash and could shuttle people to and from courts, but space will be limited to 4 people max (not on housing limitations, but transportation). So if anyone needs a spot let me know.
First come, first serve.


Sorry it's Ramada University, option B on the link that I gave.

We share the same first name. I believe that trumps all other applicants.

You are in for spot number 1. There should be eggs and potatoes and chorizo for breakfast as well so you will be all fueled up for the tournament.


a few more are <$50 less than 2 miles away on blackstone.

Motel 6 Fresno - Blackstone North #6
days inn fresno north
Travelodge Fresno Highway 41

Looking for a team...

If you've registered on hardcourtbikepolo.org already, can you please update your team name?! We need team names for podium setup. ..also, add the name of all your players if possible. Only a couple of days left to register, 10 more spots...


Need a place to stay here prolly my two teammates as well

There still might be room at my place, although I don't live super close to the courts so transportation will be an issue. I probably only have room for two more in my car.

Cool, email me as times get closer, I'm not concerned with how far it may be

Is camping near the court an option at this tourney?

Lefty Bullshit!

doubt anyone will be able to camp out at the park holding the tournament. but the other park we polo at might be camp-able (although it's about 6 miles away). This is where many people crashed at for the friendly in january.

a 6 mile ride on a 1-handed Polo Bike isn't gonna happen.
So, it's who's gotta place 4 me 2 crash? Or a silly Hotel? Ha!

Lefty Bullshit!

last year a bunch of polo cats stayed at the Hotel 6 on Blackstone. It's up to "polo standards", cheap, and less than 2 miles from the courts. I'll be going in to talk to them and see if they can give us a wing and polo rate for the rooms. Keep checking the forum



Sweet let us know as soon as possible.

- Sincerely
Olsen Aviles

For those of you who are looking for a cheap place to crash... we were able to make a large group deal with Motel 6. this is the same one where some of you guys stayed at last SIDM. They're going to try to put us all together but you need to indicate that you are with the "Bike Polo Tournament" and that you want to be put in the back by the pool. (the rooms by the pool are Smoking so if that bothers you ask for non-smoking)
The rates they gave us were $44.77 for a single person/single bed and $50.87 for a 2 person/double bed room. Make sure you tell them it's only 2 people and that you want 2 beds.

Contact: (559) 222-2431. Make sure to mention "Bike Polo Tournament" and that you want a room by the pool
Address: 4081 N Blackstone Fresno, CA 93726
Map: http://goo.gl/maps/5OeS2


looks like i am goin, woot! gonna need somewhere to throw my sleeping bag. holla at me if you
have any room for me. i got $25 on it

give blood. play polo.

we're going to be shifting everyone over to podium so we need team names and players updated. PLEASE!? If you know of anyone that is going to play and hasn't registered, kick them in the butt and tell them to hurry up and sign up.

oh yeah, the weather won't be 96 degrees like last year. we made arrangements for 80 degrees all weekend long... yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee


Can't wait to see y'all!!!!

Cadabbers - "We will literally stab you"

Still needs me a team...

Bunch of loose cannons on hardcourtbikepolo.org

Hurry up and snatch someone up!!


I am interested in playing if someone needs a third. I am a former midwest player. Recently moved to Phoenix. Anyone need a third?

I also need a team. Possibly just a third. If you guys are still scrambling maybe we should join forces?

Wednesday April 17th will be the absolute last day to register. Need to transfer everyone to podium by Thursday night. Also, if you are registered please be sure that your team name and all players are updated....

See you soon


Good LUCK to everybody! Sounds like fun. Wish I could be there!

It should be fun...RIGHT?

Going to be attending last minute. Hit me up if you want to be teamies!

Yo, I'm looking to get a third for my team.

Hey cody its Olsen, bobby gave you my number. txt me sometime today so we can talk. I'm looking to qualify and we should go over some other stuff.

- Sincerely
Olsen Aviles

Can someone pick me up from the airport Friday evening?

yeah, what time are you coming in?


6:15 P.M.

Jon, call up Benson. His number is a couple of messages down. He's available to pick you up


Just a heads up everyone. I'm going to be running reffing this weekend. Please take the time to brush up on the current rule set. It is a quick, easy, and important read http://www.nahardcourt.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/2013NAHRules_v3-3.pdf.

A couple things to take away.

All teams are required to have matching uniforms (at minimum matching colors)
Everyone will be required to wear a helmet
On saturday the LOSING team will be required to hang around the court for the next game to goal judge.

I am going to need a couple good volunteers to step up and run the B court for reffing. It would be great to work with someone who has experience as a referee, umpire, or official in the past. You have to be loud, assertive, and aware (while not necessarily sober). If your interested please hit me or T up.

Good luck everyone

I am available to pick up anyone from the airport if needed. I have a big car for luggage and bikes. My number is (559) 908-7983.
Also Me and Mike Hunsaker are looking for a 3rd, we need to register today, anyone who needs a team call me ASAP. I have been playing for a while, and ride fixed, Mike is fairly new (about 6 months in) and we are looking to have a good time! If you are worried about getting top 6, maybe find another team, but I guarantee you will have fun with us!

We are on Hardcourt polo as our 3rd TBD so if anyone wants that spot go ahead an add in! or give me a call

It's going to hot! 88 degrees on Sat and 90 on Sunday. Bring shade, lots of h2o and sunscreen.


Updated ruleset for SouthWest Regional Qualifier
I shall bring Hard copies to
http://www.nahardcourt.com/?p=276 click on pdf version

Slay ya there . Sorry I couldn't get there earlier.

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

Just read Brian's post above . Thanks Dillman

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

HEY so what are we doing once we all arrive tonight? registration party? pick-up?

Call me (559)3945285. We'll be at Spokeasy (bar)



Looking forward to a fun weekend!

Hey, after some early morning setbacks, were finally up and running.. follow us on Seattle swiss.



Seeding for Sunday
1. The Control
2. Grass Assault
3. Young & Restless
4. The Goons
5. Legal Alien Orders
6. Cadabbers
7. Creamy Beavers
8. Of Mice & Men
9. FBP
10. Tri city pedal junkies
11. Roughnecks
12. Pedal Junkies
13. Blood sweat & beers
14. Baby Chefs
15. VPJ
16. Second Breakfast
17. Teurel Hunden
18. Bipolor
19. Cyclopaths
20. The* Eastsides
21. I bent my wookie
22. Autmnbombs
23: Kitten Tears
24. Allahu Akbar



Pic of the final board. Too tired to type it all out. The Control, Young & Restless, Grass Assault, The Goons, Tri City Pedal Junkies, Creamy Beavers. Phew that was good times!

that was a roller coaster of a weekend. Fresno , thanks so much for so much work putting together a perfect qualifier . SouthWest rocked it hard this year with so many up and coming clubs and players. Looks like the next generation has landed.
Great selfless reffs in Scano , Dillman , doug , Joel , plus plus plus. Sara and Sarah AWESOME.
MVP of the planet Tsunami.....incredible run for him , Remac and Sloppy Joe
The Control...just how we like our Champions..........undefeated all weekend.
The rest of you are pure dead brilliant. Good times

"So this is how it ends"MACHINE

Thanks for a great time Fresno! Everybody knew it was going to be though, because Fresno knows how to throw the best polo parties. You guys know how to do it right. Davis can't wait to come back down and play you again! We'll be throwing a friendly once Abe gets the OK from his doctor about playing again so we hope to see you all there

I thought it was a great turn out. Thank you to everyone who made it possible, especially the out-of-towners who put in the time and effort to help us build the second court Friday night.
I hope to see you all very soon in future tournaments.

I thought it was a great turn out. Thank you to everyone who made it possible, especially the out-of-towners who put in the time and effort to help us build the second court Friday night.
I hope to see you all very soon in future tournaments.

Thanks so much for the excellent job on hosting all of us, Fresno! The courts were excellent, and I liked what y'all did for that bump down the middle that used to be there, I dint even notice it this time. Even the food was extra tasty! Also props to Joel and his brainware for handling the round robin when the software gave out. Gracias to Mike Skano and Brian Dillman for a solid job reffing us hoodlums. To my teammates Joey y Pistolero; thanks for slaying. Joey I think it's safe for us to add your surname to the Goalhole dictionary as it is clearly your signature to score (or assist) off the opening Joust! Congrats to those lil rascals from AZ known as Grass Assault, and The Control from Frisco. Couldn't have been beaten by a nicer bunch of guys. Til next time...

The standings from Smack in Da Middle 2013:

1) The Control – Ace, Andrew, Forrest
2) The Young & the Restless – Joker, Pistolero, Joey
3) Grass Assault – Mini Mike, AJ, Jacob Boyd
4) The Goons – Brick (LA), Brandon (SC), Josh (SD)
5) Tri City Pedal Junkies – Tsunami, Remac, Sloppy Joe (FNO)
5) Creamy Beavers – Creamy, Tobi (SF/Zurich), Ryno (SF)
7) Cyclopaths – Tony White, Benjamin, Zeke (Davis)
7) Cadabbers – Donnie Pepper, Eli, Davey Carfax (LA)
9) Of Mice & Men – Olsen (LA), Cody (SC), Bobby (LA)
9) peDal jUnkies – Tea, Matt, John (FNO)
9) Second Breakfast – Jonathan (AK), Dean (LA), Sarah (LA)
9) Legal Alien Orders – Machine, Jason, Jacki (SF)

My teammate chatted my ear off all the way home about what a great time he had at his first tourney. Sitting poolside, Jinxy tells me how awesome it would be to take over a hotel in California and play polo all weekend, which happened to be precisely what we did for Smack in Da Middle 2013.

Tea & the Fresno crew were outstanding hosts. Near perfect courts were built up with a very generous donation from Home Depot and a strong local crew. A 3rd court was available on an adjacent (large) roller hockey court. Goals provided by Arena Bike Polo were heavy steel and stood all weekend like boulders. The food was great, free food truck on Sunday (thanks Dustybuns!) Crews set up under pop-ups (thanks Jinna!!) and trees and on beds of pickups. What I love about tourneys in California is the way people potluck together a weekend that sends everyone home with a grin pasted in place by sunburn, sweat and dust.

I believe Fresno can claim to be the first tourney to execute three methods of throwing swiss rounds. They were started by hand on the white board, followed up with Seattle Swiss, moved to Podium for the afternoon, and from Saturday afternoon onward went all manual on the white board. The switching around is not recommended. It was not intended as a review of the methods so don't ask. We had 60 games of polo to get through and we made it happen. Apologies to those who like to check in on the event from home. Participants put their devices away for the weekend. Only three smartphones could be summoned for transmitting to the internet, with no volunteers to push buttons. My phone had choked to death by the end of the weekend – dust kills electronics and I should have known better.

Dillman brought a very strong ref voice to the courts and put in long hours in the hot sun. Speaking for myself, I will never ref from outside the court again. I found it far more effective to hover at half court (shady side) while moving to keep out of play but in good position to see everything. Every game had a ref on court and two goal judges, and not every tourney can boast as much. Reffing has tons of room for improvement as we all know. Bike polo is more artful than just a few years ago, and so refs have it relatively easy. The whistle hardly blew for infractions and I'm not aware of a power play happening. There was plenty of contact yet no angry words exchanged between players that I observed. One unfortunate lesson: the game ends when the whistle blows, the ball needs to be in the net to count. That one gets people talking. The lack of scoreboard was never an issue, thanks to attentive refs.

The Control was in control. Their play is very tight and precise. They put the ball in the goal and played hard defense. Young & Restless cut their teeth with Joey to earn a 2nd place. The young guys of Grass Assault held 3rd. No one was surprised at top three. Four of the next six teams are either very new or came together immediately before the event. Honorable mention to Tri City Pedal Junkies for earning a qualification as the instant mix team. Tsunami (Sacto) and Sloppy Joe, a very new player from Fresno, made the goals happen with Remac holding it down in back. Davis polo showed up very well at their first big tourney. We look forward to playing in Davis!

Cheers from California!

the goals were great! but brandon did fall into one and completely disassembled it! what a great view

We can't wait for people to make it out to Davis!! One of our original players tore his ACL at the Battle for California last year in Sacramento. Once he's ready to start playing again this summer we're going to have a friendly to celebrate. Very soon we will have an announcement on a date.

We had a blast as always playing with everybody. We picked up our mallets for the first time 15 months ago and have made leaps forward every time we get to play teams better than us. So much quality polo in the Southwest. So much to learn! We're thinking about getting a trip together to visit SF soon.

Thanks to all the refs, it was hot as hell out there and they did a great job dealing with the (infrequently) bitchy players. I didn't see many people complaining but I did see some of the "where's the call" death stares. Thanks to the bracketologists who kept everything moving along (not an easy task).

Can't wait for the next one