Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Battleship tournament held in the Student Aquatics Center for the first time

Monday, October 15, 2012
Southeast students try to sink each other by throwing buckets of water into their foes' boat. Photo by Kyle Theis

Exhausted and soaked, Southeast Missouri State University students rapidly scooped water into buckets while the defeated participants hollered and cheered. Finally, with one last dump of water a canoe sank to the bottom of the pool in the Student Aquatics Center and the victors high-fived and celebrated.

Battleship is an intramural game played in the pool with teams of four players. Teams use three gallon-size buckets to dump water into and try to sink the opponents' canoes. Each team is also given a yoga mat to block water from its canoe.

On Oct. 2, eight teams participated in the Battleship tournament put on by Recreation Services. The cost to play was $10 per team. Five men's teams and three co-ed teams participated.

"I think for a first-time event and this being something unique, we did a lot on Facebook and posting YouTube videos to show people what Battleship is," assistant director of Recreation Services Jen Rose said. "I was pleased with the turnout."

Rose and her staff look at what activities other universities participate in every spring. They came across Battleship, which is played at the University of Alabama, Ohio State University and the University of Miami, and decided to try it for the first time.

The players were not allowed to touch the opponents' canoes or the side of the pool and could not attack in certain zones.

The 8-foot-6-inch and 3-foot-8-inch deep ends of the pool were considered non-attack zones, marked by flags hung above each end of the pool. When a canoe crossed into a non-attack zone, opponents were not allowed to throw water until they moved out of the area.

"I think we're going to do a few different things next time. I think boundaries are a tough one, trying to find boundaries that are easier," Rose said. "And having staff in the pool to put boats back after each game."

However, the non-attack zones were not the only thing that caused challenges to the players.

Junior Erin Pennington, a member of the Battleship Babes team, said the most difficult part of the game was to stay balanced.

Balance was a problem for most teams as their canoes began to fill with water. The canoes began to rock easily and teammates had to adjust how they sat in their canoes to stay afloat.

By the end of the night, Chadnell, one of the co-ed Battleship teams, was the winner of the tournament, and all participants were completely drenched.

"Battleship is by far the most unique I.M. [intramural] at SEMO. It's a combination of balance and luck, where the odds are never in your favor," said junior Patrick Enslen, a member of the Sigma Nu Slippery Snakes.

Rose plans to have Battleship as a special event in the spring and an intramural league next fall. Students do not have to sign up for special events and can just show up to participate.