Intramural’s keeps students fit

By Albert Shelby

March 27, 2014

College is quite stressful and if your tired of playing video games to relieve stress, playing in any intramural sport could be the way to go. Every semester Western students are allowed to participate in any Intramural game of their choice. Some games are individual sports  but majority of the games require you to recruit a team. The spring semester games include, dodge ball, racquetball, basketball, badminton, washers tournament, ultimate Frisbee, Hot Wheels derby, sand volleyball, disc golf, soccer and broomball. At the end of every sport, the winners are awarded with trophies or medals. Wonda Berry is the Recreation Services/Facilities Director, and she is also in charge of all intramural games. Berry has been running the intramural games for over 20 years. “I set up the games from start to finish with the tournament brackets, the round robin play and the seeding,” Berry said. “Then I over see my managers, and make sure the games are played correctly. I make sure there are no conflicts or controversy.” Berry wants students to know that education is important, but staying fit is something that they should also be aware of. “I want people to realize that once they finish high school, that their career in fitness is not over,” Berry said. “I like to provide them a safe place to actually play and give them a chance to be social here at Western. I believe that’s my role” Intramural sports have been a tradition at Western since the early 1970's. Over time, the program has grown, and so have the number of participants. “I think it was created to get the kids active and get them to doing things,” Berry said. “College is about education, but, a lot of times, the mental aspect also has to incorporate some fun activity things. That’s what intramural provides.” With basketball and flag football as the sports that draws the biggest crowd, it is difficult to add in other activities for students to participate in for intramurals. “Basketball is one of our biggest activities, and there are a lot of students that sign up for basketball. To get all of them the adequate playing time, it’s hard to add in a lot of other activities,” Berry said. This year some new activities were created, but that also means some activities will have to be eliminated to make room. “We are going to try broomball this year, which we have never done before,” Berry said. “If we put some new activities in, there is a chance that we will have to take some away. It’s hard to get all of the activities in for the number of students that play.” Business management major Lester Thomas has participated in intramurals every year at Western. Thomas finds the activities a good way to stay out of trouble and to play the sports that he loves. “I like competition,” Thomas said. “Plus, I have always loved to play football and basketball when I get a chance. I see intramurals as a way to be competitive and participate in certain sports that interest you.” The intramural basketball tournament is coming to a close, but there are still eight sports left that will start up before the end of the year.