News Pickleball Community Supports Garrett College Robotics Team - Garrett College

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Campus News

April 4, 2018

Pickleball community supports Garrett College Robotics Team

Invented in 1965, Pickleball has become one of the fastest growing sports in the United States, and is expanding all over the world. The sport is often described as a combination of tennis, table tennis and badminton. Pickleball is a fun, friendly, and competitive sport for all age groups, and very popular in retirement communities.

Garrett College recently hosted a Pickleball Clinic on March 17th in the Special Events Center thanks to Patricia LeBlanc of Fairmont, W.Va., and David Welch of Garrett County, Md., who were instrumental in organizing and hosting the event.

Proceeds from the clinic were donated to the Garrett College Robotics Team, Project Kraken. “On behalf of the Garrett College Robotics Team, I would like to thank all of the Pickleball players for their support to our robotics team,” said Qing Yuan, Dean of Academic Affairs at Garrett College.

Garrett College’s Project Kraken robotics team placed sixth overall at the 2017 Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) International Underwater Robotics Competition held in Long Beach, California. Project Kraken ranked second among U.S. teams at the competition.

More than 30 players, at different skill levels, attended the clinic. Players represented Garrett County, as well as the following areas: Cumberland, Morgantown, Fairmont, Clarksburg, and Charleston. Some of the area’s top players volunteered to be the instructors, including: Justin Stephens, David Welch, Adam Wolfe, and Gary Willmon, who have played in USAPA Nationals, U. S. Open Pickleball Championships, and tournaments throughout the country.

The clinic provided beginner and intermediate level group instructions, followed by informal games. The event was deemed a great success by those in attendance, with many favorable comments.

Garrett County has a history of quality Pickleball play, largely attributed to local resident Mike Stephens. The Pickleball population has been growing, with dozens of players in the county, with approximately 260,000 players across the United States. As interest in the sport grows, many players are eager to learn more, and to advance their skills.

Yuan, who is also a Pickleball player, stated that planning is underway for a regional tournament to be held on May 5, 2018 at Garrett College. Additional information, such as registering for the tournament can be found at the following link: