Handball Club goes to National Championship

Handball Club makes a name for ASU in non-traditional sport

By Allison Price / Carli Robison
On February 28, 2014

ASU's Handball team returned on Feb. 23 from USHA Collegiate Handball National Championship held in Raleigh, North Carolina.

For those who do not know what handball is, it's a more intense version of racquetball, without the racquet.

"It gets the university exposure on a national (and somewhat international) level via a nontraditional sport," Handball Club Coach Warren Simpson, PhD said.

"Plus, student-athletes like to talk to others about the university and student life which opens up new horizons for them."

Simpson said the overall team record in matches was 16-9. The team is made up four undergraduates and two graduate students.

Anthony Bryson and Dom Reagor both advanced to the national championship finals in their respective levels of play.

Both members finished as national runner-ups in their divisions. John Zafereo, a second-year player, showed great improvement and finished 3-1. Another returning player, Beth Casarez, also finished at 3-1.

Vanessa Varughese played quite well and had a very close match in her semifinal round of play in her division, Simpson said.

"For the first time in six years we had a freshman, Logan Benson, travel with the team," he said. "He played great for a novice and went 2-1 in his division. If he plays all four years he could be a diamond in the rough as he is pretty athletic and has picked the game up quickly."

Bryson, first-year graduate and team member for about two years, joined the team after attending the first handball class offered at ASU. After that he fell in love with the sport and hasn't taken his gloves off ever since.

"The Handball Club did pretty good the last week in Raleigh, NC," senior James Dougherty said. "We did not win a third national championship because of the new scoring system, but we would have won under the old one. It was super humid in NC, and that sort of affected our daily attitude of playing. The East Coast isn't West Texas, that's for sure."

Bryson said the team was able to get closer while spending time on the road and each player helped to coach their teammates.

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