This past weekend was a historic success for the UCSD Table Tennis Club as they received direct qualification to Nationals! This year’s NCTTA’s West Regional Championship was hosted at RIMAC, and attracted the 11 strongest schools on the west coasts of the United States and Canada.
UCSD’s Coed Varsity team was represented by captains Steven Chen and Tran Huynh, and three rookies: Anthony Chu, Sudarshan Shyam, and Xuanfeng Li. The varsity Tritons defeated Santa Monica College 3-1, University of British Columbia 3-1, and University of Colorado Mesa 3-1 in the group phase. UCSD then faced off with University of Colorado Boulder in the quarter-finals with a decisive 4-0 victory before finally being stopped by the eventual champions from UC Berkeley in the semi-finals.
The battle for 3rd place and the coveted final direct qualification position to this year’s National Championship in Texas was against University of Washington, who defeated the 3rd seeded Bruins of UCLA in a surprising 4-0 upset in the other quarterfinal before being stopped by finalist UC Davis in the semi-final. With a significant rating advantage and impressive victory over UCLA, UW was the favorite to win against UCSD.
To the shock of the college table tennis community, spectators on the court, and fans watching on the live-stream, UC San Diego secured a monumental series of upsets over UW with a complete 12-0 shut out, marking the first time in history that UCSD receives direct qualification to Nationals!
UCSD’s Anthony Chu (rated 2268) upset Billy Ding (rated 2456) in a 3-0 win: 11-7, 11-6, 11-4
UCSD’s Steven Chen (rated 1978) upset Ali Reda (rated 2079) in a 3-0 win: 11-7, 11-9, 11-5
UCSD’s Tran Huynh (rated 2007) upset Han MengQi (rated 2075) in a 3-0 win: 11-4, 11-9, 11-7
UCSD’s Xuanfeng Li (rated 1868) defeated Sherman Chen (rated 1510) in a 3-0 win: 11-7, 11-5, 11-4
With a new milestone secured, UCSD Table Tennis now prepares for the National Championship in April and seeks to continue demonstrating the unprecedented growth of college table tennis from San Diego! Go Tritons!