Newly formed Spikeball club holds 40-person tournament



Junior Jared Sokoloff started the Spikeball club two weeks ago. Since then, the club has held two tournaments, the most recent one with 40 participants.

If you’ve passed by Cypress Field recently, you have most likely seen groups of people playing or watching a game of Spikeball. With only a week left in school, the game’s popularity, particularly among the junior class, has spread like wildfire.

On Friday, June 9, a group of juniors gathered at Cypress Field after school to participate in a Spikeball tournament. 20 teams competed, with a total of 40 players participating.

Spikeball first started gaining popularity at the high school two weeks ago, when junior Jared Sokoloff brought a Spikeball net to school.

“I figured it was a good time in the year, the seniors were gone and it was getting warmer outside. In the back of my head, I was thinking ‘Spikeball is a really fun game, I should bring it to school,’ so I did,” Sokoloff said.

The game has become increasingly popular, with more and more people meeting up during free blocks, lunches and after school to play, resulting in the unofficial creation of the Spikeball Club. Sokoloff said this popularity came almost suddenly, and people started donating nets for the club to use.

“By the second day, there were like 25 kids outside during lunch watching, so we increased the [number of] nets. Pretty soon there were a lot of kids playing,” Sokoloff said.

Following the success of the first tournament which occurred last Friday, Jun. 3, there have been countless games played during and after school. After the increase in interest from players, Sokoloff organized a second tournament.

Head of School Anthony Meyer said that he has never seen Spikeball be so popular at the high school before.

“In 2021, there was plenty of Spikeball around, but never to this extent. There used to be smaller scale games, but never a tournament with 20 teams. This is a whole new level,” Meyer said.

At three p.m., the players lined up with their hands on their hearts for the national anthem. Afterward, they broke off into their teams and checked who their starting opponent was on the bracket.

Shortly after the tournament began, heavy rain started to fall down. Assistant Head of School Hal Mason came onto the field and told the players the conditions were unsafe and they needed to evacuate immediately. However, despite the warning and slippery conditions, the players continued on.

The tournament used a double-elimination bracket, where teams who lost played in a loser’s bracket. The first few rounds were played to 11, and the following rounds were played to 15. Most games were short, usually ending in 10-15 minutes.

Players, even after elimination, continued to play for fun. Everyone cheered for their friends, and even faculty came to watch.

Close to five p.m., it was time for the final match of the tournament. The remaining crowd gathered around and watched as juniors Sam Bunk and Lucas Grimes took on Sokoloff and junior Isaac Toffel.

After a hard fought 20 minute game, Bunk and Grimes, team “Guatemala,” won the tournament with a slim three point lead.

“It was a very good tournament. Isaac and Jared were a great matchup, but in the end, Sam and I were just better,” Grimes said.

Despite losing the final match, Sokoloff kept his head held high.

“I’m feeling a little sad and disappointed, but it was a fun ride. We lost in the finals, but that’s what happens in Spikeball,” Sokoloff said.

Bunk said he is grateful for the large community the Spikeball Club has given him.

“I feel great. It’s fun to get the crowd out here. It’s a fun sport and I’m glad the club’s been made,” Bunk said.