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AlumNews: Talon Articles

Baker's dodge, duck, dip and dive

Tuesday, February 5, 2008  
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By Curtis Elmore

The champion of the Oklahoma Christian University dodgeball tournament, the Bakers Half Dozen, played Oklahoma City University last night. Last year, a different Oklahoma Christian team, Best Friends 4Eva, won the tournament against the Oklahoma City dodgeball team, which was composed of their baseball team.

"They came in looking all professional," Butch Martin, vice-president of SGA said. "Then, our team from OC came in looking all goofy like average joes; it was a lot of fun to watch."

Any students were allowed to form a team to compete for the final match against the Oklahoma City team this year.

Sixteen men's, women's and co-ed teams from Oklahoma Christian competed against one another to play in the final match.

"I was hoping it was a chance for students to have fun," Martin said. "I know a lot of students who like the sport and the movie, 'Dodgeball.' Everyone who went had a lot of fun."

Most students can remember playing dodgeball in grade school, but since the release of the movie "Dodgeball" in 2004, the game has gained popularity, even to a professional level.

"There is an official rule book that exists," Martin said. "We didn't really pay attention to that. We just went over a few rules before the games began and tried to abide by those."

Although the National American Dodgeball Association published an official rulebook, the rules are pretty much the same as remembered in gym class. If the ball a player throws is caught, that player is out. If a player gets tagged by a ball, that player is out. If a player catches a ball then drop it, that player is out.

"A lot of teams dressed up in costumes, which I think made the game a lot more fun and relaxed," Martin said. "Hopefully, no one took it seriously and just had fun."

Each team played each other through "double elimination," meaning each team got to play at least twice. All Oklahoma Christian teams played against each other on the same night, and the winning team, The Baker's Half Dozen, went on to play the Oklahoma City team Thursday, January 31.

The Baker's Half Dozen consists of Joey Baker, Adam Boderman, Jason Frei, Ben Hawley, Ryan Smith and Ryan Stephenson.

The team dressed as bakers, donning hats and aprons for the competition.

Last year, Best Friends 4Eva signed up on a whim and were surprised to do so well. They did not prepare for play, except some on their costumes. Despite appearances, every round brought them closer to being crowned the champions.

"We dressed up to be goofy and wore weird clothes," Best Friends 4Eva teammate Riley Shumate said. "Once we got out there, we were serious. We are all competitive, but we really didn't expect to do well."

The group gained momentum as they began to win, with help from audience support.

"There was not much change between the game played in grade school and the one we played at OC," Shumate said. "We played for fun at church camp, so I knew some strategy. It was more exciting now that we had people watching."

Hawley enjoyed the camaraderie and challenge this year's game brought. "We saw the success of Best Friends 4Eva last year, and we just wanted to see if we could do as well as they did," Hawley said.

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