Dodgeball dodges final hurdle

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Photo by YDN.

After reaching a contentious 7-5 decision at its last meeting, the Intramural Secretaries Council will make dodgeball an official intramural sport in the spring season.

While dodgeball has been an intramural trial sport for the past two seasons, Kieran Dahl ’14, head IM secretary, said that the results of this year’s matches will now count towards Tyng Cup standings. Dahl and two other members of the IM Council said that the decision was divisive, as several colleges were opposed to the inclusion of dodgeball with the Tyng Cup.

“The colleges that enjoyed dodgeball and did well were for it,” Dahl said. “The teams that were opposed to dodgeball found it was difficult to referee and generally didn’t do as well. They didn’t want [dodgeball] because it might hurt them in the standings.”

Lindsey Mischner ’13, a Trumbull College IM co-secretary, said she voted against dodgeball because there was not enough natural interest in the sport. Mischner said that last year as IM Secretary she did not push it as hard as other sports because it did not count towards the Tyng Cup standings, but that this year she said she will put more effort into recruiting students to play. Last year, Trumbull faced several forfeits, as it was not always able to field a full team.

While former Head IM Secretary Peter Jasinski ’12 said that the number of forfeited dodgeball matches was higher than the IM Council wanted, the number was not nearly as bad as the sports dodgeball was replacing.

For example, Jasinski said that four years ago, poor attendance led the IM Council to cancel field hockey as an intramural sport. The next year, the IM Council replaced field hockey with kickball. Out of 33 kickball matches, Jasinski added, 31 matches were forfeited by both teams, with the other two being forfeited by only one of the teams scheduled to play.

In the search to replace kickball, Jasinski introduced dodgeball as an intramural sport two years ago. Because the IM Council does not like to sponsor events that students do not attend, Jasinski said sponsoring dodgeball — with a high level of student interest — was advantageous.

“People just like playing dodgeball,” Jasinski said. “To field a team you only need four people. It’s hard in my opinion to not field a team.”

He added that it is easier to get students to attend events in the gym than it is to get them out to the intramural fields.

After a vote by the IM Council, dodgeball was added as a trial sport in the 2009-’10 intramural season. Last year, however, the IM Council voted against adding dodgeball as an official intramural sport for the 2010-’11 season, Jasinski and Mischner said, because there were still several kinks to work out relating to officiating.

To eliminate these problems, Jasinski said that the IM Council added a second referee to dodgeball matches.

IM rules state that teams must include at least two male and two female players, but because some colleges have had difficulty meeting these requirements, Dahl said the rule may be addressed to minimize forfeiting.

Although dodgeball is the only sport being added as an official intramural this season, Jasinski said that there has been support for the addition of several different sports in future seasons. Jasinski listed Quidditch,boccie and track and field as suggested sports.

Track and field was implemented on a trial basis last spring but will not continue this year.

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