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Table Tennis Third At Nationals

By Helen Huang
TEAM MEMBER

It was one big ping-pong party as the division winners of the National Collegiate Table Tennis Association as well as the host school, MIT, faced off for the championship on Sunday. Teams from Johns Hopkins, Florida State, Cornell, Harvard, and MIT woke up early to spend the day exchanging fast hits, funny spins, and exciting points.

MIT, which finished 2nd to Harvard in the New England Division by just one game was allowed to play in the championships as the host school and was seeded 5th. Nevertheless, they proved they deserved to be there, especially since they were unable to field their strongest team. As usual, Eugene Shuster G led the way, playing the number one position while Shih-Yuan Liu G, Peter Huang ’00, and Helen Huang ’01 rounded out the the team.

The morning was rough for MIT. First playing arch rival Harvard, the team was a little rusty and suffered their worst lost to Harvard this year, 1-4. Next, the team took on the number one seed, Johns Hopkins, and put up a good fight despite being blanked, 0-5. To end morning play, the team split the singles matches 2-2 with Cornell, leaving the doubles match that would start off the afternoon play as the deciding factor.

After lunch, Liu and P. Huang took on the Cornell doubles team and rallied to win the match in the 3rd game after fending off four Cornell game-match points in the 2nd. In the final matches of the day, MIT defeated Florida State 4-1. This round was once again highlighted by another exciting come back doubles victory by Shuster and Peter Huang.

MIT finished with a 2-2 record, placing them 3rd amongst the schools. Johns Hopkins University comfortably won the championships while Harvard came in 2nd. For all the details, visit <http://www.nctta.org.>