Thousands of Southern Californians wake up on Sunday and look forward to heading to the beach to play volleyball.
Reppin’ his Karch Kiraly inspired pink hat, you can count Troy Field among them. But on Cinco de Mayo in Huntington Beach, Sunday volleyball took on a whole other meaning.
For the first time in his professional beach volleyball career, he was playing for real on Sunday with his partner Tim Bomgren. Steadily, they had worked their way through the brackets of the AVP Huntington Beach Open and suddenly found themselves in the Semifinals.
“I woke up very frequently before my alarm,” the 25-year-old Field said. “Definitely the nerves started setting in when I got texts from players on the AVP who are competing in other countries and I was just so nervous. When I got here, Tim really calmed me down.”
“Definitely one of the best memories ever and something I want to hold onto. Let’s hope we make more Sundays so I can keep getting that feeling.”
In their first tournament together, Field and Bomgren had won three consecutive matches, the first time Field has done that in his career. The athletic 6-foot-4 native of Laguna Beach, Calif., was still finding his way with his eighth partner.
Though they lost to Chase Budinger and Casey Patterson in the Semifinals, you couldn’t wipe the smile off of Field’s face.
“It gets my name out there, that’s very nice, and it’s a little more respect but more importantly it’s confidence in myself,” Field said. “I feel like I was trying to do a lot to make other people proud and after (Saturday’s) match I kind of just rested in the peace that I’m proud of myself. That’s what I needed, the confidence of hey, I belong here, this is what I need, this is my life now. Just peace, I guess.”
Among the experience he gained was being down two match points in the Semifinals. Having never been at that point before, especially against a veteran team, he took a deep breath and followed his instincts.
“It was definitely a lot more pressure than (Saturday),” Field admitted. “It should have been flipped; yesterday, I was supposed to have a lot more pressure but this time there were so many people I heard from, saying, ‘Hey, I’m cheering you on,’ and it’s just mentally I need to block everything out and focus on the 20-18.”
“So I continued to tell myself ‘Just play volleyball.’ I’ve done it before, I’ve been down this much, even more, we can do this.”
They scratched for a point before falling, but Field has made his point that he’s on his way on the AVP Tour.