Margaret Hedeman, Contributing Photographer

On Oct. 25, Head Intramural Sports Secretary Rachel Cohen ’21 announced in an email to IM secretaries that intramural sports would resume starting Oct. 26.

The email came 13 days after IMs and varsity athletics were put on pause in response to the cluster of six Yale hockey players who tested positive for COVID-19 on Oct. 13. The IM season was in full swing, with playoffs approaching for the first set of sports, including cornhole, CupCheck, HORSE, pickleball and spikeball. 

“I’m happy to announce that IMs are back,” Cohen said in her address to all 14 residential college IM secretaries. “We are still playing the same number of games as originally planned.”

Cohen’s announcement guaranteed that all IMs that had already started would be able to finish their seasons, but not without a change of schedule. Cohen noted that many changes would result from the resumption of play: Outdoor sports that had already begun — CupCheck, spikeball and cornhole — will play their playoffs on Friday afternoons; new outdoor sports — KanJam and bocce — will start this week; HORSE and pickleball will resume playoffs in Room H of Payne Whitney Gym; and table tennis will begin in Room K of Payne Whitney Gym with matches of two male singles, two female singles and two mixed doubles.

This announcement confirmed that the IM season would have a part two, featuring new competitions to help teams get closer to the Tyng Cup. Among these new sports are popular games never before seen in IM competitions, such as KanJam and bocce, as well as one of the most popular IM competitions of every season: table tennis.

Given the go-ahead for the second half of IMs, Pauli Murray College’s IM Secretary Severyn Kushmeliuk ’21 couldn’t contain his excitement.

“We are especially looking forward to table tennis,” Kushmeliuk said in an email to the News. “Our captains have a whole lot of enthusiasm for the sport and our college has traditionally had really high turnout for it.”

With the Tyng cup in mind, the announcement that IMs will continue is especially important for colleges that are poised to make a push for the trophy this year. Timothy Dwight currently leads the standings with 152 points, while Saybrook is in second place with 114 points. Full standings for the race can be found here.

According to one of Benjamin Franklin’s IM Secretaries, Guna Mandava ’21, the return of the social aspect associated with IMs is just as important as the competition.

“IMs have always been a place where Yalies can relax after a busy day and meet many other Yalies across years and across residential colleges,” Mandava said. “IMs have also always fostered a spirit of healthy inter-college competitiveness. I am glad that IMs can continue to serve these important roles in Yale collegiate life, even during this unusual and challenging semester.”

Playoffs for the first group of outdoor intramural sports will resume Oct. 30.

Jordan Davidsen | jordan.davidsen@yale.edu