Pinball Challenge Teams Flip
Eliot, Currier Compete for Honor
Crying "Tommy can you hear me," the Currier and Eliot House pinball teams went head to head yesterday in the first round of a challenge match at Currier House. For the gamesters who would rather pursue silver balls than gold nuggets, the time had come to pit the forces of their souls against gravity and the hated "drain."
The match was scheduled to be played on "El Dorado" at Currier House at 7:00, followed by a second round on "Quick Draw" at Eliot House at 10:00.
But the Eliot House segment of the match was postponed until repairs could be made on Quick Draw. When play ended last night at Currier House, Currier was leading 57-21.
Flipping and dinking ferociously, the four man teams played a total of 24 games on El Dorado, the Currier home machine. On Wednesday, the pinball wizards will resume the contest at Eliot, doing battle on Quick Draw.
Last night's high score was achieved by Robert Silverman. Silverman, at 109,270, beat out his nearest competitor by over 25,000 points. The Currier team took four of the first six places.
The complex scoring system, devised by Frank Kulash and Neal Fenty, is based on the method for tallying a cross country meet. The highest game in the match is worth twelve points, with each successively lower game awarded one less point.
The 12 lowest games do not score. The total number of points that a team's games earn is the team score, and the highest score wins the match.
The top three scorers were Currier's Silverman, Kulash, 81,340 and Eliot's Tennant Tranchin, 68, 510.
The grueling match was arranged by Kulash, the curator of the Currier House Pinball Hall of Fame.
Kulash issued a challenge that no Harvard gentle-person could honorably refuse, and Eliot House responded to the call.
Onlookers, primarily Currier freshmen, were obviously enjoying the novelty of the competition, and came armed with their favorite beverages, wise-cracks, and adjectives.
"It's too weird for my ass," Karl Steinberg, the only freshman competing in the tournament, said.
But pinball's deeper symbolism did not escape the sharp gaze of the audience.
"I always took an interest in flagellation," Paul J. Schliesman '79 said.