The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Spikeball club hosts tournament, Lafayette places first, third

Photo by Caroline McParland for The Lafayette
Seniors Ethan Gabay (left) and Michael Nelson (right) won the spikeball tournament this past weekend.

The Lafayette spikeball club hosted a tournament on Sunday against local competitors including Lehigh, Villanova and Rutgers. Lafayette pairs placed first and third place overall in the double-elimination tournament.

Seniors Ethan Gabay and Michael “Pichael” Nelson, who are the president and vice president of the club, respectively, won the whole tournament. Junior Cooper Pennell and sophomore Ryan Park finished in third. These two Lafayette pairs actually ended up playing each other in the finals of the winners’ bracket, but after falling to Gabay and Nelson, Pennell and Park fell to Villanova in the losers’ bracket to finish the day in third.

Lafayette was able to set up this tournament because it played the teams before. The team looks forward to potentially visiting Penn State for a tournament next semester.

“The tournament this weekend was super fun, though a little muddy,” freshman Kevin Kamm wrote of the games on the rainy Sunday morning. “The games were pretty even for the most part (although we got destroyed by another Lafayette team) and the games were a perfect blend of kind of laid back yet still competitive. Overall, it was a great experience!”

Gabay and Nelson attempted to revive the spikeball club during their freshman spring, but due to the onset of COVID in 2020, it did not become an official club until fall 2021.

The club has a consistent 12-15 players who show up to practice, which are generally held on the quad or in the Kirby Sports Center on Monday and Wednesday nights.

“I remember that our first practice was in the pouring rain and everyone got drenched, but it was a blast. I was also initially surprised at how high of a level of competition it was,” Kamm wrote.

Nelson said that most of the club’s members have played spikeball in some capacity before, but for many this is their first time playing competitively.

“My favorite part about being spikeball club I would say is watching people and their progression from their first practice to now,” Nelson said.

Some players have had the opportunity to be nationally ranked after participating in tournaments. Nelson, for example, is currently ranked number 15 in Pennsylvania and 206th nationally, with Gabay ranked number 20 in Pennsylvania and 252nd nationally. Sophomore Ryan Park is ranked 394 nationally.

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Caroline McParland
Caroline McParland, Sports Editor

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