Boulder Ball tests students' wits, strength

The Daily News

More the 40 climbers ascended upon the Student Recreation and Wellness Center’s rock wall to compete in various events. All levels of experienced climbers were welcomed to the Boulder Ball on April 12.

The event began at 7 p.m. and had a pirate them, with skulls and a ship drawn on the wall. The routes along the wall also had pirate themed titles such as “Pirates of the Caribbean.”

“They went all out. The staff did a great job on setting up the routes. I think everyone had a really good time,” Michael Gray, a junior nursing major, said.

During the first two hours of the competition, climbers were bouldering through different routes to accumulate points. In the boulder portion of the event, competitors climbed to a certain height without a harness. Each route was marked with different colors and was worth different amounts of points. Each climber needed to have two witnesses sign their point form in order to obtain all possible points.  

RAW VIDEO: Climbing the rock wall

Ethan Hill, a senior natural resources major, won in the advanced bouldering category with a total of 7,000 points.

“It was crazy because last year I didn’t even place,” Hill said. “I didn’t have too many high hopes considering my back is kind of injured, but I wanted to see how it went. I pushed through and felt good.”

Hill has actually been climbing for five years and participated in the first Boulder Ball last year.

“The atmosphere was different compared to last year. It was a little less competitive but more fun, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves more,” Hill said.

After the bouldering, competitors began to speed climb and dyno which is jumping to designated spots on the wall for about one hour.

“We were all eyeballing these three dyno problems. The first one wasn’t too bad, the second one ­– no one got it. This last one, we were like, ‘Dude no way!’ I got and stuck with it,” said Michael Gray, who was the only climber to win the dyno competition. “I was kind of surprised with myself.”

Winners from each contest and level had the opportunity to select prizes ranging from climbing equipment to gift certificates to area restaurants.

After the competition, climbers covered their faces with glow paint and black light illuminated the facility until midnight. Normal climbing wall hours are to resume on Saturday. 

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