By: Michael Hanich | Sports Editor
Club sports are going strong on the South Alabama’s campus. The Jaguars’ table tennis club is coming off a great performance in the Fall Dixie Divisional Tournament on October 26th, in Clinton, Mississippi. In the tournament, the Jaguars’ table tennis team finished second in the division with five match points and two match wins. Mississippi College won the Fall divisional tournament they hosted with six match points and three match wins. Mississippi College is nationally ranked second in the National Collegiate Table Tennis Association. South Alabama’s Table Tennis club is consistently close on the heels of Mississippi College once again.
The club was started in 2018 by University of South Alabama student Arthur Vongsakhamphouy. The team joined the NCTTA in the Dixie Division along with Alabama, Alabama-Huntsville, Mississippi College, Southern Miss, University of Mississippi, and West Florida. The team is composed of 10 members that make the Jaguars into a divisional championship contending group as well as national tournament performing team.
The team came in second in the Fall tournament in Clinton, Mississippi. In the tournament, three South Alabama students were ranked in the top ten of the division. Axel Yarahuaman was ranked fourth, Alina Axsom was ranked sixth, and Aaron Oliver was ranked ninth. Mississippi College had five players ranked in the top ten and the University of Alabama had two players ranked in the top ten. Other group of A players for South Alabama include Jacob Younce and August Noll. Players that make up South Alabama’s B team are Vongsakhamphouy and Jonathan Brooks,
Last year, South Alabama was invited to the South Regional National Tournament as a wildcard #10 seed. They finished eighth overall before they were defeated by their divisional rivals in Mississippi College, who ended up winning the South Regional Tournament. This was South Alabama’s first regional tournament appearance in club history. In the national tournament, South Alabama defeated South Florida and UCF, who were the Northern Florida divisional champs. They eventually lost to UT-Arlington of the Texas Division.
For South Alabama, they are not looking at the past with their successful runs. They are looking to dethrone Mississippi College as the Dixie Divisional Champs in the Spring as well as push their national tournament contending club deeper in 2020. On February 8th, 2020, the Spring Dixie Divisional tournament will be held in Clinton, Mississippi once again. They will be looking to get into their second regional tournament in school history as well as their third postseason appearance in the national tournament with their first coming in 2002. South Alabama will also play USA Table Tennis tournament in between their regional tournaments in Pensacola and New Orleans.
The table tennis club is always looking for players to join their club. For more information, please contact Arthur Vongsakhamphouy through e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow the South Alabama Table Tennis club on Instagram @southalabama.tabletennis