College students play dodgeball, benefit charity

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Richard Smith
Contributing writer

With the weather getting a bit warmer, Roanoke College hosted a charity dodgeball tournament in the alumni gym. The event, held on Sunday, Feb. 19, brought together both boys and girls from around the campus for a rousing team-game.

Three teams – two teams of girls and one team of boys – competed in the tournament. Two teams of six played off against each other at one time, following standard dodgeball rules. A referee and two ball-helpers made sure the game was kept at a brisk yet fair pace. Every team played at least four times as they competed for a $50 gift card to Mac and Bob’s.

The three-dollar participation fees for the event went towards Micah’s Basket, a charity based in Blacksburg. Micah’s Backpack provides food for children in ten schools local to Blacksburg; every Friday during the school year, students from low-income families are given packs that cover meals for the entire weekend – in addition to milk, juice, snack items and some sort of educational piece. 280 children are currently provided for by Micah’s Backpack, according to the charity’s website.

The event itself was run by three college students in the Health and Human Performance (HHP) Department – Adam Yesbeck, Dean Hermanson and Dan Brodeur. “Thanks to everybody that came out,” said Yesbeck. “We really appreciate that people are willing to give back to a charity that can really use as much help as it can get when it comes to kids who need food on the table every night.”

Participants were highly energetic and displayed good sportsmanship throughout the tournament. On at least two occasions, teams on both sides were down to a single player, making for intense one-on-one matchups. After one girls’ team was eliminated, the remaining two teams competed for championship – the best two-out-of-three games. After wins on both sides and an extended game, the boys’ team eventually won the gift card. Both teams then posed for a picture before leaving in good spirits.

While Yesbeck, Hermanson and Brodeur were hoping for more teams to participate, they were still happy with the money they raised. A total of $67.80 was raised, and the tournament is not the only event hosted by Roanoke College that benefits the charity. Another sports event – this time, with soccer – raises money for Micah’s Basket around springtime on an annual basis. In this other event, members of the soccer team play two games at a time, pledging money with each goal they score; between the two games, a bare minimum of $50 is raised each year. With more than $100 overall raised between the two events this year, Roanoke College sports has been doing its part for the underprivileged in Virginia.

For those interested in donating or volunteering for Micah’s Backpack, or for those who are interested in finding more information about the charity, check out their website at http://micahsbackpack.org.