Yukon North Of Ordinary

Sports archive for December 5, 2013

Red Solo cups in crosshairs at squash tourney

Crushing a red Solo cup made all the difference in last weekend’s Reservoir Dogs squash tournament held in Whitehorse, but not in the way one might think.

By Marcel Vander Wier on December 5, 2013 at 4:04 pm

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Photo by Vince Fedoroff

SHOOT TO THRILL – Linda Aranda and Tony Radford compete in the Reservoir Dogs squash tournament at Better Bodies Fitness Saturday. The weekend tournament is intended to be fun, and is played with a modified scoring system.

Crushing a red Solo cup made all the difference in last weekend’s Reservoir Dogs squash tournament held in Whitehorse, but not in the way one might think.

Thirty players split into six teams in the fun, round-robin tournament that featured 25-minute games of no-stoppage play. The eight cups lined up against the wall provide an added wrinkle – players who hit cups receive five bonus points for that particular rally.

The overall goal is simple, said local squash pro Khoon Chua.

“Players try to score as many points as possible against each other within the 25-minute period,” Chua explained.

“After all five matches, the team with the highest points wins the tournament.”

Mr. Blue, led by Level 1 player Kyle Marchuk (most cups hit), took home the 2013 title, with Mr. Green and Mr. Red following close behind.

The team names are derived from the 1992 film about a botched diamond heist from which the tournament gets its title.

Marchuk’s championship team also included Gabriel Stetkiewicz, Ben Gelinas, Derek Bachman and Tony Radford/Susan Whitty.

Other individual leaders for most cups hit included Kevin Daffe (Level 2), Stephen Buckler (Level 3), Keegan Kwok (Level 4) and Linda Aranda/Tony Radford (Level 5).

Daffe said the cups are harder to hit than one might think.

“Personally, I think it’s hard. I hit more cups when I ignored them,” he said. “The cups completely change the game. Your opponent can be up by six points, or you had a good lead and it’s gone.”

Regardless, the changes in regular gameplay keep players interested and coming back year after year.

“The dynamics of the actual game are so different, that it makes it a lot of fun,” Daffe said. “It’s not just your standard play ... the style of play is just so different. I don’t play in many tournaments but I always play in this one because it’s so much fun.”

Squash Yukon president Chris Toleman said the annual tournament is easily the most social event on the club’s calendar.

“All of the other events we have are pretty much individual, and even in other team tournaments there’s a different format where you add individual results together,” Toleman explained. “This one here is very team-oriented. You can come off the court and feel good about yourself even if you get beaten, because you’ve contributed to your team’s results.”

The unique format provides a way for the squash community to socialize while watching each other’s matches.

“It has the biggest social atmosphere around it for sure,” he said.

The prize winnings don’t hurt either. A key part of the entry fee includes bottles of wine, which are redistributed amongst the top teams and individual cup-hitting leaders post-tournament.

“There is some sort of return on your investment,” Toleman chuckled. “First-, second- and third-place teams got some return this year. It used to be the winner took everything. I think that contributes to the enjoyment of the thing as well.”

The much-loved tournament has been held for about 15 years, he added.

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