On April 11, the varsity badminton team traveled to KIS Jeju to participate in a two-day invitational tournament. This was an unprecedented experience for the team because up until the previous year, badminton in SIS was still pending as an official KAIAC Sport and was thus unable to participate in such divisional tournaments. The members expressed great joy and appreciation for the new experience in addition to the victories they achieved on their trip.
“I cherished this opportunity to be able to bring the badminton team to Jeju-Island for our first divisional tournament,” said Alexander Weir, varsity badminton coach. “Regardless of what the results were, I was proud of the hard work and sportsmanship that the members of the team were able to display.”
The SIS badminton team was in the second division of the tournament. Throughout the two days, members participated in both singles and doubles, cooperating and cheering to help bolster the team’s spirit and performance. In the end, the team placed first overall in the second division and the doubles team with Louis Kim (10) and Samuel Chung (11) was given the title of Shield Champion as the winning team. Ashley Park (10) also placed fourth in doubles after teaming up with another player from KIS.
“I was quite proud of my achievement at the tournament,” said Louis Kim (10). “For several weeks, I had sacrificed my time that I could have spent studying or hanging out with friends to invest effort into improving my badminton skills. Although I still have a lot to learn, I can say that I am satisfied with the progress I made this year.”
Among the massive amount of participants, there were many individuals who were also able to make achievements in the singles tournament. Steve Yi (10) placed fourth, Samuel Chung (11) placed fifth, and Hyeonmin Chang (10) placed eighth overall. Every member of the team played hard and well, competing from morning to late afternoon without much leisure time. Unfortunately, as most of the day was spent in tournaments, there was no time to tour and enjoy the landmarks and foods of Jeju Island.
“I have to admit that it was disappointing that we did not have the opportunity to enjoy our time in terms of recreational activities at Jeju Island,” said Celine Choi (10). “However, it was truly a rewarding experience to cheer for teammates and to put my new skills to use on the court.”
The team was successful in demonstrating the skills they had garnered through hard work throughout the season by engaging in intense rallies with teammates in addition to acquiring and practicing new skills. As a result, the trip to Jeju this year was a stepping stone to greater opportunities for the varsity badminton team as an official sport.