There’s only one place where you’ll find Mario, Luigi, a team of Los Nachos wrestlers and other unique characters battling it out on the court for the championship title: at the SF State Costume Dodgeball Tournament.
Working its fourth annual tournament, intramural and sports clubs coordinator Ryan Fetzer said this was the most successful Costume Dodgeball Tournament because it had 12 teams participating, which is the most it has had so far.
Among them was the Ballerz Squad, a returning team of five charismatic members who sported a “presidents on vacation and athletic black guys” theme for this year’s tournament.
This year was team captain Alexander Neylon’s third time participating in the tournament, which he enjoys coming back to each year.
“I love it. It keeps getting bigger every year,” said the 21-year-old senior Kinesiology major, who dressed as a retired Ronald Reagan on vacation. “It’s a really cool way for students to get involved.”
Although they did not place in last year’s tournament, 20-year-old Clayton Steel, the team’s “Kobe Bryant,” and 21-year-old Ryan Sherman, who dressed as a vacationing George W. Bush in a red Hawaiian shirt, said they heard rumors going around recently about their returning team.
“I don’t wanna be cocky, but yeah, there were people saying things,” Sherman, a senior international relations major, said. “(They said things like) ‘The (Ballerz) Squad is gonna blow it up.'”
The Ballerz Squad started the tournament with an intense match against the South City Killaz, a seven-member team with an “around the world” theme. Although the Ballerz Squad was the determined winner, Fetzer and the dodgeball refs decided to do a rematch for the game because the Ballerz Squad members were suspected of stepping over the shooting line several times during the match.
South City Killaz member, 21-year-old Tony Flores, who participated in the tournament as Erik Estrada, said confusion erupted during the match when he and his players noticed that the Ballerz Squad were stepping over the line.
“So, every time we would go and tell the other ref on the other side, (the Ballerz Squad) would hit us with the ball, and (the refs) would call us out,” the senior history major said.
Sherman said he and his team agreed with the call to do a rematch.
“We felt that it could’ve been unfair because there could’ve been unfair outs,” he said. “So then we said ‘alright, we’ll redo it just to make sure the win is fair.'”
Though the rematch increased competition between the two teams, the Ballerz Squad ended up winning the rematch and the next two matches afterward, creating a large supportive following from the audience.
In the end, however, the Ballerz Squad ended up taking third place in the tournament, losing their fourth game to the Milk Men, who ended up being this year’s tournament champions.
“(The Milk Men) were just really fast, and we just had unthoughtful outs,” Sherman said.
Milk Men team captain Garrett Mason, a 19-year-old civil engineering major, said he and his team can’t wait until next year’s tournament.
“Our team does plan on returning next year because we want to win twice in a row!” the sophomore first-time participant said. “We anticipate more competition, but we’re ready for anything that’s thrown at as.”
Next year’s Costume Dodgeball Tournament will have a lot of familiar faces, as members of the Ballerz Squad and the South City Killaz plan on returning to steal the championship title.