Pool league brings students together in game room competition

Inspired by pool popularity

Matthew Steinberg, Contributing Writer

Since the 15th century, pool has been played by kings and common folk, passing the test of time and becoming a popular pastime for many people. It is for the young or old, athletes or couch potatoes, those who have Apple or those who have Samsung. Billiards is all inclusive and for this reason the game room invites all students at Allegheny to sign up for this semester’s pool league.

Vinny Carone, ’19, is the founder of the league and thought of the idea by observing how students spent their free time in the game room.

About 25 students signed up for the league, which will be held on Sunday, Monday and Thursday nights from 10 p.m. to midnight, indicating to Carone that a lot of students at Allegheny enjoy playing pool.

“I get a feeling there’s a good amount of people who at least enjoy coming in here and taking their minds off things and playing [pool]. It’s one of those games you can play your whole life I feel like and it’s popular in all age groups,” Carone said.

Billy Henshaw, ’18, said he and his friends come in and play pool in order to take their minds off things since they are all currently working on their senior comprehensive projects.

“I would say [pool] is probably one of the more popular games in the game room,” Henshaw said.

Jared Szklenski, ’21, joined the league to relax and enjoy time with his friends. Szklenski works as an assistant in the game room and agrees the pool table usually stays occupied.

“If there’s nobody else in here and I see a couple guys walk in, they’re usually coming to play pool,” Szklenski said.

Carone, who also works as an assistant in the game room, has the chance to interact with many students who come to play pool, ping pong or one of the many other options it has to offer. His inspiration for starting a pool league specifically came from seeing familiar faces come in for late night games and thought adding a competitive edge would be a neat and fun idea.

“Guys would come in and play pool all the time, and I’d get to know their names and play with them sometimes and I just got the idea that we should make a league out of it,” Carone said.

The league will be played in a “round robin” style, meaning everyone will get the chance to play each other and then will culminate at the end of the semester with a tournament based on how each player does. As of right now, Carone has split the players into three sub-divisions, which are East, Central and West to assure the more experienced players do not go against the less experienced ones. The divisions are tentative for now but Carone plans to solidify them in the next couple weeks of game play.

This semester will be a bit of an experiment for the pool league and if all goes well, Carone said he hopes the league will become a trademark of the Allegheny Game Room.

“I’d like to see more of this sort of thing in the future,” Henshaw said. “I’m very happy that Vinny Carone was able to take that initiative and want to do something with regulars who come in.”

The league is competitive, however, Carone and other participants hope everyone will remember that students having fun and getting their minds off school work is the goal. At the end of the league, Carone thinks the game room will have a pizza party for all who participate throughout the semester.