Mellon Bowl XIV Wrap-Up

Simultaneously with the Lehigh Valley Tournament, 22 teams from Western PA and Ohio competed at the 14th iteration of Carnegie Mellon University’s Mellon Bowl. Unfortunately, we have no pictures of the event (anyone out there- feel free to share!), but we do have full stats, which can be found here.

Alagar Homeschool cleared the field undefeated, blowing out the competition with 8 of 10 wins by over 300 points and all wins by 95 points or more. The one-two punch of Rajan and Jaya Alagar continued to roll. Rajan’s 36 powers were almost double that of any other player, and he has clearly replaced Jack Chaillet as the west’s top player. Jaya contributed 20 powers of her own, while siblings Indra, Krishnan, and Swata also appear to have improved some since last year. The Alagars currently have a commanding lead over western PA, and I would be fascinated to see how they might fare against the stronger fields in the east of the state.

A three way tie for 2nd occurred between Allderdice B, Winchester Thurston A, and State College “A” at this event. Allderdice, as one of the state’s largest clubs, came up with an extraordinarily balanced attack in their B team, which outdid the A squad and had every player contributing at least 22 points per game. Thurston, lead by key performances by Jacob Dubner and Aiden Place, scored well and became the only non-Alagar team to clear 20 points per bonus on the set. State College A here was really their B team, as the A team was at Lehigh Valley. State College thus achieved a very fine two 2nd place finishes in one day, showing off depth.

The remainder of the field consisted of Pittsburgh area tournament regulars Hampton, Indiana, Shady Side, South Side, Keystone Oaks, Pittsburgh Central CatholicKane, and Westinghouse trading blows. There were also other Allderdice, Thurston, and State College teams, plus second time pyramidal entrant Yough. Stats show that there were many tight bouts, which led to lots of tightly clustered 4-6, 5-5, or 6-4 records. This suggests an even field among these schools. A story line for the rest of this season will be seeing who studies and improves to become top dog in this pack.

All in all, it is good to see many old friends back in action. The Pittsburgh circuit continues in two weeks at the University of Pittsburgh’s SAGACITY.

-Ben Herman

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