Dordt College News

Internationals prevail in table tennis tourney

May 13, 2010

An international battle of the paddles concluded a semester-long campus-wide ping pong competition.

The final eight players represented both students and staff in a league organized by Michael Gorter and Steven Oswald.

Gorter and Oswald both made the finals, as did Michael’s dad, who is Dean of the Chapel. Filling out the brackets were David Puruolte, Churachandpur Manipur, India; JaeSeung Baek, Seoul, South Korea; Sam Hart, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Matthew Postmus, Kalamazoo, Michigan; and Chris De Jong, Dordt’s Director of Career Services and Calling.

Holding his trophy is David Puruolte, with runner-up JaeSeung Baek to his left.The ping pong competition was not the first for Pastor Rod Gorter. As a student at Dordt from 1978-1982, he organized a campus tournament for three years in a row. When asked how he did as a student, he recalls, “I made it to the quarter finals.” He added with a smile, “I’m hoping age and wisdom prevail tonight.”

All of the residence halls at Dordt have ping pong tables, and North Hall residents held their own competition earlier this year. The North Hall champion won the right to play Pastor Gorter. That match-up resulted in father and son on opposite sides of the table, with Michael prevailing over his dad.

Leading up to the playoffs were several weeks of ladder league play, with roughly thirty players moving up the player list when they won or down the roster when they lost. “It’s a mental game that relieves stress,” noted Michael.

Thursday night it came down to the best of the best.

“These guys got fire!” remarked enthusiastic spectator Casey Hawks. “It’s like a crazy person against a crazy person. Their hand-eye coordination, like how do they do that?”

The competition was intense, with at least one cracked ball and an overheard remark, “Oh, that’s gonna leave a mark.”

In the end, David Puruolte took home the trophy, with JaeSeung Baek runner-up.


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