Badminton: Falcons end season 1-11, will likely move down to El Camino league next year

May 3, 2017 — by Sherrie Shen and Michael Zhang

After many key players graduated last year, the members of the badminton team found themselves unable to win many matches and finished the season 1-11. Their last-place finish in the more competitive De Anza division means that they will mostly likely drop to the less competitive El Camino division next season.

As the season ended, many Falcon players are arguing against this drop, most notably because of a game against Palo Alto High School’s badminton team on April 20. In this match, Palo Alto’s team moved the players who normally played the No. 3 position to No. 1, and changed its No. 1 and 2 players to No. 2 and 3 in order to win more games. This strategy, known as stacking, is often considered cheating.

Sophomore Hannah Chang, who played varsity girls’ doubles No. 3 against Palo Alto, felt unhappy after the match, saying, “There is really no point in playing badminton if you are just going to cheat your way through.”

Had the Falcons won this match instead of losing 16-14, the Vikings would have been the ones to be relegated to the El Camino division.

Badminton coach Charley Situ planned to argue against the Vikings’ stacking strategy during a meeting with coaches from schools in both leagues on May 1 in an attempt to change the result, but due to printing deadlines, the decision made at the meeting could not be covered in this issue.

After the game against Palo Alto, the Falcons closed out the season with two more losses, one to Monta Vista by the score of 24-6 on April 27 and the other to Gunn by the score of 19-11 on April 25.

Although the Falcons’ 18-12 win over Palo Alto on March 23 boosted the confidence of newer players, they lost the next two matches against Gunn 24-6 on March 28 and Cupertino 22-8 on March 30.

These results weren’t entirely unexpected, however.

“With the loss of around 20 seniors last season, I expected our results wouldn't be as good as last year's, but the underclassmen and the newer members were able to gain a lot of valuable experience,” junior Catherine Zhang said.

The Falcons plan on rebuilding their team and coming back stronger next year.

“I hope we can make an even stronger team next year by using our practice time wisely and playing in positions according to our strengths,” Chang said.

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