Twelve of the strongest men’s handball clubs in North America (including two from Quebec) convened at the U.S. Military Academy’s Arvin Gymnasium to battle each other on the courts in the highly competitive, annual The West Point Invitational tournament. This tournament was preparation for the upcoming US Nationals at the end of May. The Inter Men have not been on the court together in competition since hosting their own tournament in October and some of their rustiness showed in their play.
“It was a strong tourney,” commented Florin Filip, veteran pivot player. ”Fourth place isn’t what we were hoping for, but it was a good warm-up for Nationals.” Inter triumphed over both West Point teams including an nail-biting quarter final victory (25-24) over the run-and-gun West Point Black.
After the success against Black, Inter would face their old foes, the always talented, New York City club, in the semi-finals. Holding their own in the early part of the match, the lack of depth would eventually catch up to the Inter crew and New York opened the game up in the second half to send Inter home with a 26-18 defeat.
Inter would meet the Houston Vikings for a second time in the 3rd place game. It was a closer game than in the group play (9-15), but with only 2 bench players, Inter was a bit overwhelmed and would fall to the experienced Vikings crew, 24-27.
In spite of the setbacks, it was still a great weekend of handball. Inter would like to thank the West Point staff for their gracious hosting and a job well-done.
1. New York City
3. Houston Vikings
4. Chicago Inter
5. West Point Black
6. Houston Firehawks
8. NY Athletic Club
11. West Point Gold
12. Air Force