ASI invites students, alumni to compete in annual kickball tournament

By Alexander Novoa, Nov. 7, 2023

ASI hosted a kickball tournament Friday, Oct. 27, inviting CPP students to play an all-time favorite playground game at the activity fields.

Fourteen contestants participated in the tournament, which was a mix of walk-ups and students who signed up online, allowing two teams of seven to go head-to-head for a chance to win the grand prize of team T-shirts.

The event aimed to provide an opportunity for students to engage in physical activity while also socializing and having fun. Intramural sports supervisor Youseph Abu-Hajar mentioned ASI hosts various tournaments throughout the school year.

“ASI holds a lot of tournaments,” said Abu-Hajar. “We have track and field tournaments, teqball tournaments, pickleball tournaments, kind of like everything you can think about. We also have esports tournaments, and we offer regular sports in our intramural sports program.”

At the beginning of the tournament, Abu-Hajar explained the rules of the game and assigned team names with both teams being named after a randomly chosen player on the respective teams. The home team was named Team Cole, while the away team was named Team Joveth.

Kickball is a fun and popular game that is played similarly to baseball, with the objective of scoring more runs than the opposing team. It also incorporates elements of soccer and requires minimal equipment, namely a ball, bases and a playing field. For this tournament, each game consisted of five innings, and the teams played a best-of-three series to determine the winner.

Both teams took the field for the first game, with Team Joveth kicking first. While Team Joveth was not able to score in the first inning, Team Cole secured two runs. This made Team Joveth change its strategy in the third inning by successfully targeting the gaps between the opposing players, earning them three runs and the lead.

As the game went on, David Vargas, a computer science student in Team Joveth, mentioned how good his team was doing mid-game.

“It’s 7-2, everyone is hitting good kicks, and we are scoring; the energy is high right now,” said Vargas. “We have to keep the momentum going if we want to win.”

Competitors high fiving before the series kicks off. | By Alexander Novoa

The first game ended with Team Joveth winning 9-2. The teams had an opportunity to regroup and rehydrate before the second match, and many players also used the break to socialize with their opponents and teammates alike.

Many of the players mentioned how they hadn’t played kickball in years but had experience in other sports, making it easy to pick up the game again.

As the break ended, the teams hit the field again, with Team Cole kicking first. CPP alumna Jordan Sakasegawa, playing for team Cole, discussed her team’s strategy going into the second game.

“We’re going to try and utilize the home plate, making sure we stop trying to kick the ball far but short and strong,” said Sakasegawa. “We’re going to try and aim to kick where the holes are so we can at least walk and get a couple of people on base.”

Team Cole won the second game 6-0, resulting in a tied series before the final game.

The final game was a nail-biter as both teams kept exchanging scoring plays. The intensity grew even more as the teams began arguing with each other and with Abu-Hajar, who was officiating the game.

Team Joveth had a 4-0 lead mid-game, but Team Cole caught up and tied the score 4-4 by the last inning.

According to the rules, if the game is tied at the end of the fifth inning, then the game will add an extra inning to determine the winner.

The extra inning began with Team Joveth kicking first but failed to score any runs. Team Cole took its turn to kick and, using the same tactic as in game two, scored a run, which resulted in Team Cole winning the series.

George Tetzloff, a business administration and marketing student at CPP, shared his thoughts on the tournament.

“I’ve never been on a team per se, but I used to play kickball for fun with my family,” said Tetzloff. “I got an email from CPP saying that there’s a kickball tournament, and I was interested, so I signed up.”

ASI plans to continue its weekly competitions, with its next event being an esports FIFA tournament scheduled for Nov. 17 in the Games Room, Etc.

Feature image by Alexander Novoa

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