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KY revived the old ”Proffasähly” tradition

The first challenge match after the covid pandemic put the tradition on hold, was played on Monday December 4th, 2023. The game turned out to be a tight battle until the very end.
Proffasähly 2023 -joukkueet, Kauppakorkeakoulu
Faculty and staff in the back row, KY in the front row.

Players, back row (faculty & staff): Mikko Jalas, Timo Korkeamäki, Jonna Söderholm, Jukka Rintamäki, Alexei Koveshnikov, Perttu Kähäri, Mikko Leppämäki, Markku Kuula, Paula Schönach, Ewald Kibler. 
Front row (KY): Jenni Lehtinen, Kim Jokinen, Weixin Niemi, Tero Karesniemi, Rasmus Räsänen, Heidi Riihimäki, Meeri Korpi, Eelis Arokoski, Julius Tall, Topias Turppa

Following a long tradition at Kauppis, the KY Board challenges the School of Business professors (nowadays faculty and staff) to a game in sports. Since 1964, the chosen sport was volleyball. The results of the games played during those years reflected the fact that volleyball has – for decades – been quite an unfamiliar sport for the younger generation.

Lentopalloa Kauppakorkeakoulussa. Kuva: Aalto-yliopiston arkisto
Volleyball game in the gym of the old School of Business main building in Töölö (Martti Kyykoski behind the net). Photo: Aalto University archives

Aalto University’s now retired Sports Manager, Martti ”Mara” Kyykoski, who worked in the School of Business since 1975, confirms that some tens of volleyball games were indeed played since 1964. 

‘To be more exact, 47 games, as the KY Chairpersons did not dare to challenge the faculty in 1977 and 1978. In 2012, the match didn’t take place due to the student union hassles in the early years of the Aalto merger. KY’s record during all those years was a staggering four games won, the latest in 1988. The ones before that were in 1965, 1967 and 1968.’

In the Dean’s Glögg party in December 2014, representatives of the newly appointed 2015 Board of KY instigated a tough negotiation, which led to a historic decision: the sport was changed to the more youth-friendly sähly (an informal version of floorball). The first “Proffasähly” was played in Kauppis in Töölö on the 17th of February, 2015. The statistics have not been kept as well since, but before the covid pandemic KY probably won three of the five games played.

Proffasählyn haastekirje 2023, Kauppakorkeakoulu
The challenge letter

The match of 2023 was initiated as Chairperson of the KY Board Rasmus Räsänen, and Vice Chairperson Jenni Lehtinen challenged Dean Timo Korkeamäki. The tone of the challenge letter pre-empted such a fierce competition, that a real expert in the sport, School of Business alumnus and three-time world champion of floorball Tero Tiitu had to be recruited as the referee.

Tough game in Otahalli

A dramatic turn in the game took place after the Kauppis faculty & staff team had attained a sturdy 7–3 lead. Westend Indians, the men’s floorball championship league team, stopped the game, announcing that the court was booked for them. Although KY’s reservation was, after all, confirmed, the players kindly accepted to continue the challenge match on another court. The box of energy bars received as reconciliation from the Indians was especially needed by the faculty & staff team :).

After the (tactical?) change of courts, the performance of the KY team improved considerably, and they were able to tie up the game at 9–9 just three minutes before the end of the last period. Thanks to a few amazing last-minute saves and a couple of lightning-fast offensive plays resulting in goals, the faculty & staff team managed to secure an 11–9 win in the epic battle.

‘We really need to take a hard look in the mirror. It was clear who came to the game prepared, and who had spent their nights in student events. After an unbelievable comeback, the victory was so close that we could almost touch it, but unfortunately, we just couldn’t handle the pressure after all. We will not be discouraged by this disappointment but will start scouting for new players right away. We strongly believe that the result will look very different next year,’ KY commented the game.

‘A warm thank you to the KY Board for the challenge and for keeping up the tradition! It was a pleasure to get some exercise in a fun setting,’ Dean Korkeamäki remarks. ‘Even our referee Tero complimented (and even seemed to be surprised by) how clean and sportsmanlike the game was from each team as we were enjoying the aftergame refreshments offered by KY in the Otahalli cabinet.’ 

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School of Business students. Photo: Ari Toivonen
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