Behind every great man thereâ€™s a great woman -- even at the World Series of Beer Pong.
Dan Range and Nick Syrigos won the sixth edition of the annual tournament at the Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas last Tuesday. The duo plan to use part of their $50,000 winnings to buy their girlfriends engagement rings. â€śThe girls were there for us the whole time,â€ť says the 25-year old Range. â€śWe couldnâ€™t have done it without them.â€ť
Under the name â€śStanding Ovation,â€ť Range and Syrigos beat 506 other teams from nine countries. They only lost a single game during the three days of competition. Even more impressive: They didnâ€™t practice together going into the tournament.
Range lives in Columbia, Ill, just south of St. Louis, across the Mississippi River. Syrigos, 30, is a nearly an hour away in St. Charles, Mo. They played in a couple of satellite tournaments together, but practiced individually leading up to the WSOBP.
â€śWe just counted on each other to shoot and get ready on our own,â€ť says Syrigos, who manages a painting company.
Syrigos has been playing beer pong since he was in high school. (Surely he practiced with Kool-Aid back then, right?) Range, on the other hand, is a relative newcomer to the sport. He didnâ€™t play in college and only started two years ago when he heard about the WSOBP. The two met at a tournament and eventually decided to join forces.
The idea behind the game is simple: Toss a ping pong ball into cups filled part way with beer. If a ball lands in your cup, you drink the contents. First team to sink all 10 cups wins. For player safety during the WSOBP, the contestants have the option to use water, and even if they choose beer, arenâ€™t required to finish every cup.
â€śWe tried to drink at a comfortable pace. You have to,â€ť Range says. â€śItâ€™s a long event.â€ť
Syrigos insists itâ€™s not about the alcohol, though. Winning the competition was the goal. And as you can tell from their team name, the pair doesnâ€™t lack in confidence. â€śI knew we were going to win,â€ť Range boasts. Syrigos had the same feeling and bet a friend two bottles of Grey Goose vodka, which heâ€™s eager to collect. (Though itâ€™s not about the alcohol!)
Outside of an engagement ring, he plans to use his winnings to pay off some school loans. Range, an assistant golf pro by day, plans on getting a new set of clubs. After the ring shopping, of course.
â€śStanding Ovationâ€ť holds the title for at least the next year. And Range has a parting shot for all the challengers gearing up for the World Series of Beer Pong VII.
â€śCome get us!â€ť