Girls Team: 1st Place
Boys Team: 1st Place
Girls Individual Winners: Maria Veronica Ramos '19, 1st Place; Margarita Ukleina '19, 2nd Place; Yuka Tanaka '21, 3rd Place
Boys Individual Winners: Matt Meng '21, 1st Place; Minjoo Seo '19, 3rd Place
This year's NISSA Badminton Singles Championships were hosted for the third year in a row by TASIS. Knowing that their abilities and skills were improving, the Tigers jumped into this championship with a lot of high expectations and determination. Team captains Maria Veronica Ramos '19 and Minjoon Seo '19 showed off their skills, beating each of their opponents in their pool and earning the points needed to ensure that the team trophies were TASIS's to keep. At the end, the Lady Tigers outscored the nearest opponent by three folds while the boys team outscored its opponents by twice the points. This marks the first time in which TASIS brought home the championship team trophies for both the girls and the boys!
Individually, each of the Tigers showed tremendous improvement in all aspect of their games. There were fewer and fewer unforced errors, the drives were crisper, the clears were long and high, the smashes were on target, and the drop shots were flat and deliberate. Many of them are at the next stage of their development, thinking 2-3 shots ahead and changing their shot selections with ease. Confidence and finesse were the words the team used for the tournament. And it paid off.
Young rising star Yuka Tanaka '21 showed that she could play under pressure, outlasting her opponents with smart plays and quick snapping shots. She earned the Most Improved Player last year and her hard work continues to pay off. She earned her first medal in this tournament, and TASIS fans will have many more opportunities to see her grow and play up another level.
At the same time, in the boys tournament, we witnessed Matt Meng '21 come out of his shell and push himself as he entered the championship match against the best player from ASMilan. Meng became more and more confident with each stroke. He took advantage of his opponent's frustration and remained steadfast. His smashes were solid and his quickness was the best we have ever seen. Meng was ON. In the last and final game, he played with vigor and determination as the entire tournament watched the two battle it out. It was a great championship win and should be the first of many for Meng.
The next and last home tournament for the Badminton team will be this Saturday, February 9, when TASIS will host the ESC Badminton Championships in the Palestra. The Singles will begin at 9:00 and the Doubles at 12:45. Good luck, Tigers!