Dip, duck, dive…

Dip, duck, dive...

Story by Ben Rueter

It’s probably one of the simplest sports ever created. Simple enough for an easily-distracted first-grader to understand and fun enough to keep playing until they’re an easily-distracted college student. The rules are in the title itself: dodge(the)ball.

“We stress that we’re no commitment… It’s free, we’ll never have a membership fee. We just want it to be a fun, stress relieving experience,” said senior Nate Bullis, president of the Dodgeball Club.

Dodgeball Club is one of the many intramural sports at UW-Eau Claire. Bullis — who’s been president for two years now — said the club is meant to be laid back but still lots of fun for those who attend. The club meets weekly at McPhee Center for a pick-up game that lasts for about two hours. Outside of the weekly bouts, the club holds tournaments that are either free or the admissions fees go to a charity.

“It’s not typical, regular, elementary school dodgeball,” said senior Josh Close, a dedicated member of the Dodgeball Club. “You get a lot of different players that do abnormal things to make the game
more exciting.”

The club started in 2007 with about 15 members and has been growing ever since. Bullis said the club now has about 75 members that attend weekly. He said he is pleased with the support the club is getting from Eau Claire.

The positive support has the club taking part in a few charity events like “Dodge for Darfur” and Relay for Life.

This semester, the club is working with “The Rec-ing Crew” on campus to help students living in the dorms to be more involved with activities in Eau Claire.

Members like senior Josh Lemaniak — who’s been with the club for the last four years — said he enjoys the relaxed feeling the club brings, yet keeps a competitive attitude. Bullis said that he wants to keep the friendly attitude the club promotes, but has looked into taking parts of the club into a more competitive realm, for those who
are interested.

“We’ve talked about joining that (competitive intercollegiate dodgeball) and fielding a more serious team and a more dedicated team,” Bullis said. “So that might be something we go after in the future.”

One thing the club is looking for in the future is more members. Junior Emily Anderson said Dodgeball Club continues to be a great place to meet people after she joined her freshman year.

“We’d always like to see more people. Every year we always get a bunch of people that come the first couple of weeks and then it gets down to the people who have been there a long time,” Anderson said.

Bullis and other members said they would like to see the club grow more and exceed 100 members.

For information on how to participate, weekly games or tournaments visit the dodgeball club’s website at http://www.uwec.edu/dodgeball.