Racquetball Fever


Erik Wander/KMXT

The Kodiak Racquetball League at the Teen Center wrapped up its week-long annual Valentine’s tournament over the weekend. The tournament featured men and women, of all skill levels, from beginner to expert. Men and women competed in three divisions and doubles.

KMXT’s Erik Wander has more.

Among winners in the tournament was Craig Johnson, who, along with partner Dave Sherwood won the doubles bracket. Johnson gave tournament director Leo Kourmetis (Core-MET-iss) all the credit for pulling off a successful, entertaining and fun tournament, as he does every year.

(Johnson 1 40 sec. "Leo Kourmetis is the godfather … tournaments for years.")

Craig Walton won the tournament’s A division, Steve Ruotsalainen (Root-suh-LAY-nen) took the B division, Dave Dan Dorman came in first in the C division and Dave Sherwood and Craig Johnson captured the doubles title. Interest in racquetball has spiked in Kodiak according to Kourmetis. He said about 25 people competed, but that the tournament itself seemed to spark interest in racquetball among those who turned up just to watch.

(Kourmetis 1 12 sec. "We had a real good turnout … wanted to be in it.")

Kourmetis said the tournament usually draws roughly the same group of players every year, but that he has recently seen an increased interest in the sport locally. He also said there’s a clinic with professional racquetball player Jeff Sandys of Anchorage planned for this Friday and Saturday at the Teen Center, and that response to the clinic has been strong thus far.

(Kourmetis 2 25 sec. "We usually have almost … pretty serious competition.")

Kourmetis says he’s gratified to see the rise in interest in the sport, and that racquetball can be the right choice for anyone, from those in need of a little recreation, a bit of exercise or people looking for serious competition.

(Kourmetis 3 49 sec. "I’m just happy to see that … whatever you want to do.")

The racquetball clinic next week comes at a fee of 10-dollars, and people can sign up for it at the Teen Center. Kourmetis also said a table tennis tournament for players of all levels will be held at the center beginning March 2nd at 6 p.m., providing another opportunity for exercise and fun. Prospective competitors can sign-up in advance of the tournament and practice this week at the Teen Center or simply show up at the center on the first day of the tournament. There is no fee for the table tennis competition. Full results of the racquetball tournament can be found on our web site at kmxt.org.

I’m Erik Wander.


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