USATH Men's Handball League Starting in the Northeast by Dominique Dumont / September 27, 2009 It's a rainy day here in the Northeast but to some handballers, it doesn't matter because they are in the gym playing the sport they love. As I blog, New England, Army and New York City are having their first "friendlies" (as they like to call them) this weekend at West Point Military Academy. A bit of a misnomer, I think, because once on the court, there is nothing friendly going on there! This "friendly" weekend play serves as a precursor to the Northeast league starting up in November. Yes, you heard it, L-E-A-G-U-E! As part of our new competition philosophy, we have opted to guide and facilitate our regions' wishes in regards to their season. Providing their format allows for fair play, healthy competition and follows our new eligibility rules, each region has its own format. All five regions must show underlying consistency with each other leading to our stamp of approval. Thus far, most are all set to play and battle it out towards qualifying for the top 8 spots at Nationals. The Northeast starts off the year with two great divisions. Division A has the most experienced teams and consists of Army Black, New England, NYAC and reigning champions New York City. Division B will also have an awesome season with six teams including some new and enthusiastic start up clubs: DC Diplomats, Philadelphia Revolution, Army Gold, NYCTHC II, Penn State and Pittsburgh U. (Yes, you read it right, Pitt vs Penn!) So there you have it, lots of teams and monthly league play, plus of course, most teams will also compete at regular yearly tournaments. Last but not least, more great news...long time handball manager/supporter Jan O'Shea has volunteered to be our Northeast League Commissioner and handle the administration of the league. By the way, kudos to my colleague Brian Finley for suggesting that I appoint the help of a Commish! Anyhow, we are so pleased to have Jan involved and the guys are also thrilled! Jan will be responsible for monitoring results, applying the point system and ensuring that the monthly schedule is followed. All in all, I think we have the making of a great upcoming season! League play starts late November and the season starts officially in two weeks with our first tourney at UNC on Oct 16-17. The Tar Heel Invitational will be a USATH sanctioned event and we hope to see everyone there. As always, bring your friends, bring your families and especially bring the youngsters and expose them to the greatest sport in the world! Stay tuned for my next blog about the South East! Dominique Dumont Regional Director - East E-mail me at: firstname.lastname@example.org Blog Description Dominique Dumont is USA Team Handball's East Regional Director. A former member of the Canadian Junior National Handball team and downhill ski racer, Dumont has studied in Canada, France and the United States, earning a degree in Economics and an MBA. She holds 12 years of experience in marketing, finance and consultation. Fluent in English and French, she resides in West Palm Beach, Florida, and oversees operations for USATH in the Eastern United States. Contact Dominique at Dominique@usateamhandball.org. USATH chairman departs for Copenhagen in support of Chicago 2016 USA Team Handball - USA Team Handball September 28, 2009 MEDIA ADVISORY USA TEAM HANDBALL CHAIRMAN DEPARTS FOR COPENHAGEN Handball reaction available Friday USA Team Handball, which has not qualified for the Summer Olympics since 1996, has as much to gain as any U.S. Olympic National Governing Body from a Chicago victory this Friday in the high-stakes competition to determine the host of the 2016 Olympic Games. To demonstrate support for the bid, and to lobby the global handball community on Chicago’s behalf, USA Team Handball chairman Dieter Esch departed Salt Lake City today bound for Copenhagen. In the coming days, Esch will meet with high-ranking officials from many countries, including Germany, Poland, France, Croatia and Denmark. In addition, Esch is expected to meet representatives from the Pan American Team Handball Federation and the International Handball Federation as well. Esch founded USA Team Handball in April 2008, after a public bid process to serve as the National Governing Body and caretaker for the sport in the United States. Handball’s popularity crested with the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, suffering from lack of funding, public awareness, grassroots programs and a unified sense of mission. In less than 18 months, USA Team Handball has conducted tryouts, kick-started youth programs in 20 states, fielded national teams at the youth and senior levels and reorganized domestic competition. USATH has worked closely with Chicago 2016 and its legacy sports organization, World Sport Chicago, to bolster the sport’s development in the Windy City. However, just one country currently automatically qualifies for the Olympics from the Americas (ranging from Greenland to Argentina) - and Brazil has earned every men’s and women’s bid since 1996. As host country, USA would receive automatic berths for its men’s and women’s teams. “It’s the shot in the arm that handball in America needs,” said general manager Steve Pastorino. “We’ll be watching with baited breath on Friday morning." For immediate reaction from Copenhagen and the USA Team Handball headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah on Friday, all media outlets are invited to contact Lauren Harrington at (801) 463-2000 or www.usateamhandball.org.