2014 La Quinta High School graduate Ciara Reistad returned to the desert from America’s most prestigious women’s beach volleyball tournament.
The San Jose State University senior was 1 of 32 collegiate beach volleyball players invited to the 3rd Annual E-Invitational hosted by Eric Fonoimoana, 2000 Sydney Olympic Games gold medalist.
The invitational was a unique beach volleyball tournament played on the sand of Hermosa Beach.
The athletes signed up as an individuals and were place in pools of 4. Each player were paired with different teammates throughout the event. This provided the great opportunity to play with talented players from the top 20 beach volleyball universities in the country.
After each round, the top two players moved on in the tournament and placed in a new pool of 4. After the round finished, the point standings started over. Once the final 4 pool was established, the athlete with the best win/loss and point differential at the end of the 3 matches wins. In short, queen of the beach.
Reistad, with only two years of collegiate beach volleyball experience, made it to the top 10.
“I got to play with girls from UCLA, University of Utah, Tulane, Pepperdine, Cal Poly,” Reistad explained. “It was seriously incredible. I ended up making top ten and of course the girl I ended up losing to by two points ended up winning it so I was like ‘OK that’s alright with me’.”