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USA Team Handball

Aug 28 7th Annual Beach Handball Tournament

Aug. 28, 2013, 10:05 a.m. (ET)
Eleven teams from Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Phoenix traveled to Huntington Beach, Ca. for the 7th Annual Beach Handball Tournament this past weekend. Hosted by Los Angeles Team Handball Club, the tournament ended Sunday afternoon with Los Angeles Kahunas and Intersport Bulls crowned champions of the Men's and Women's divisions, respectively.

Consisting of both veteran and first-time handball players, tournament play opened with exciting action that carried on throughout the day. In the Men's division, San Francisco Cal Heat (4-1) finished the day on top, just ahead of eventual champion Los Angeles Kahunas (3-2). Rounding out the men's rankings were Phoenix Team Handball Club (3-2), San Diego Muddogs (3-2), Las Vegas Scorpions (2-3), and Los Angeles Sambas (0-5). In the Women's division, eventual champion Intersport Bulls ended the day on top with a perfect 4-0 record. Finishing second was Select Stars (3-1), followed by Phoenix Team Handball Club (2-2), Soccer Plus Elite (2-2), and Las Vegas Scorpions (0-4).

The Men's division opened quarterfinal action that saw the MudDogs and Phoenix THC advance to face the Cal Heat and Kahunas, both of whom received quarterfinal byes as a result of their first and second place rankings. In the first match, Kahunas held on for a confident 2-0 win over a persistent MudDogs team. The second match ended in stunning fashion, as Cal Heat, tournament leaders, found themselves heading to the bronze medal match and Phoenix THC still with a chance at gold. After watching Cal Heat defeat MudDogs to take bronze, all eyes fell on the gold medal match. With the score tied after regulation and golden goal, the two teams were forced to settle the match with a shootout. Backed by the stellar goaltending of eventual Most Valuable Player Juliano Oliveira, the Kahunas claimed gold, forcing Phoenix to settle for silver.

In the Women's Division, both quarterfinal matches ended in 2-0 victories for Intersport Bulls and Select Stars. The bronze medal match saw an exciting matchup between Phoenix and SoccerPlus Elite end in a well-earned victory for Phoenix. The women's gold medal match saw an undefeated Intersport Bulls squad facing a confident Select Stars. Taking the lead of star player and MVP, Trine Bay Larsen, the Intersport Bulls claimed gold with a 2-0 victory.

As Coach Julio Sainz explained, once again the summer season closed with an excellent tournament and new found handball friendships. With the indoor season right around the corner, great things are in store for team handball in the United States.

Team Standings:

Men's Division:
Los Angeles Kahunas
Phoenix Team Handball Club
Los Angeles Cal Heat
San Diego MudDogs
Las Vegas Scorpions
Los Angeles Samba

Women's Division:
Intersport Bulls
Phoenix Team Handball Club
Select Stars
SoccerPlus Elite
Las Vegas Scorpions

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