On the Wednesday’s prefacing winter break, two tournaments hosted by the Trading Card Club were held in the Andover High School library, open to all AHS students. Each tournament consisted of a Yughio division and a Magic The Gathering competition.

These tournaments were the first competitions held by the Trading Card Club, a student organization created this year by Sean Song, PJ Ganci, and Valentin Boulas. The tournaments were open to any interested members of the AHS community, regardless of experience. Each club leader has the responsibility of leading a division of the club, with Song being in charge of Magic The Gathering, Valentin leading Yughio and Ganti heading Pokemon. The Pokemon division was omitted from the two most recent tournaments, but club members have hopes that it will be reinstated in later competitions.

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Sean Song, Michael Desantis, and Logan Harvey play Yughio at Wednesday’s tournament

The Trading Card Club was first formed when the three founders began to play trading card games with each other in the school’s library. According to Song, once this became a regular occurrence, the three boys “thought to ourselves, ‘Hey? What if we were to have a club? That would liven things up a bit!’ Then we started having all these ideas and started the club.”

From that point, the club became not only an opportunity for students to trade cards but also as a way to introduce students previously unfamiliar to the games associated with trading cards. When asked about the goals of the club, Song replied that, “The trading card club is all about making a small little community for helping people who don’t really know the game or have friends who play it, and they want to play it but don’t really know what it’s about; we’re here to welcome them into the trading card community.”

One such student who is new to the AHS trading card community is Logan Harvey, a freshman. Although Harvey has been playing trading card games for several years, the most recent tournament hosted by the Trading Card Club was his first experience with organized trading card competitions at AHS.

Not only is Harvey new to the Trading Card Club, but he is also new to the Andover School System; prior to this year, he was enrolled in Methuen Public Schools. Harvey was impressed by the number of clubs offered at AHS and even said that, “when I came here and noticed the club variety, I decided to see if there was a trading card club, and luckily for me, there was.”

Although the general consensus of the members present at the tournament was that the competitions were a success, there were a few obstacles that the club was required to hurdle. In regards to the group’s first ever tournament, Song admitted that, “it was a little bit dicey actually. Since there was an uneven amount of people we had to divide the fights up into two one-versus-one fights.” Luckily, this strategy proved to be effective, and the tournament proceeded until junior Michael DeSantis emerged victorious.

Despite the fierce competition amidst the club, the participants traded not only cards, but also laughter and advice. Moments before the second tournament began, Ganci said, “It’s a fun way for us to get together after school, having fun doing what we love. Expectations are to just have some fun.”

By Laura O’Brien