YONEX Northeast Collegiate Team Badminton Championship Update: Defending Champion Drexel University Wins Again
New York University, last year’s runner up, tried again to win the Championship. Their women were decidedly stronger than the Drexel women, but the Drexel men won all their matches. In the end, Drexel University clinched the title with a 5-3 win. The Drexel Team was also the champion in another Collegiate Team Event held in IBC just three months ago. Last year, when one guest player was allowed, Drexel had a little help from top ranked Kenneth Bohr. Though there is no provision for guest player this year, the Drexel team was strengthened by freshman Lee Chern. The third place Division 1 winner was Columbia University, considered the most improved from their second place Division 2 position in 2014.
Division 2 Teams this year are certainly stronger than last year. Notable among them are the top two teams that had to play all matches, finishing with a tight 3 gamer to determine the winner. In the end, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) was victorious over Stony Brook University. Similarly, the third and fifth place competitions were tight, requiring all 9 matches to be played to determine the winner. Northeastern University (NEU) beat defending Division 2 Champion Yale University to take the third place and University of Connecticut beat University of Rochester to win the fifth place. It is notable that the badminton clubs of WPI, NEU, UConn and UMass have only recently been organized.
The sixteen teams that participated in the tournament had to brave the 4 day storm Marcus which dumped almost 2 feet of snow at the tournament site, most of it coming down after the event. The Cornell and Loyola University teams forfeited some matches to leave earlier. The University of Rochester team completed all their matches only to realize that their flight back to Rochester had been cancelled. They ended up driving back to Rochester, arriving home early Monday morning. Through it all, the 16 teams had lots of fun and challenge, and are looking forward to the next big event!
Since February 2014, there are now 21 Collegiate Teams in the Northeast that have participated in the three huge Team Events held. These include:
The eight Division 1 teams are:
Amherst College, MA
Columbia University, NY
Cornell University, NY
Drexel University, PA
John Hopkins University, MD
Loyola University, MD
Middlebury College, VT
New York University, NY
Northeastern University, MA
Princeton University, NJ
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY
Rutgers University, NJ
Stony Brook University, NY
Syracuse University, NY
University of Connecticut, CT
University of Maryland, MD
University of Massachusetts Lowell/Amherst, MA
University of Pennsylvania, PA
University of Rochester, NY
Worcester Polytechnic Institute, MA
Yale University, CT
Organizers are now planning a second tournament site in the DC area in order to accommodate the participation of more Collegiate teams in the Fall. The goal is to encourage the organization of badminton clubs in colleges that don’t already have one and to provide the competitions that will allow the club teams to strive for excellence. Are there 30 competitive collegiate teams in the Northeast?