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Students scale new wall at bouldering competition

By Gizem Baydar
On March 4, 2012

Outdoor Adventure hosted their first bouldering competition March 1 at the Morris Recreation Center (MRC). The Plain and Fancy Sandwich Shoppe, Asana and El Dorado Walls sponsored the event.

Students came out to the event as 27 climbers competed in three different categories at different difficulty levels. This was the first climbing competition for the majority of the contestants.

"My goal was 20 [contestants] but we got 27," manager of the Outdoor Adventure, Jessica Chumley said. "Climbing communities [are] growing. It brings us all together."

The competition had two categories. Between 5-8 p.m., climbers had a chance to climb as many routes as they could, with their top five scores being counted for the competition.

Unlike the main rock wall, wearing a harness or belaying is not required for bouldering, but every climber needed a spotter while they were climbing in case of a fall.

International students showed interest to the competition by watching as well as participating.

"It was my first time doing a bouldering competition. I enjoyed climbing but some routes were hard," Korean student Kyeong Yong Shin said. "I think everyone can enjoy this."

Given the level of difficulty, some climbers were pleased when they finished the route successfully. "I am very happy that I finished it," Saudi Arabian student, Yousef Alosaylan said.

Food and drinks were provided for the climbers as a compliment when they were taking a break. There were also prizes for everybody who attended the competition such as chalk, shirts, and water bottles.

At 8:00 p.m., it was time to announce the three men and women with the highest scores for the final round. 

Grace Schwen, Kaitlin King and Rachel Montgomery were the three contestants who got to compete for the final women's round, while Ryan Klink, Andrew Dahir and Mike Perry were the three in the men's.

Students who came to the MRC to work out relished the finals and cheered to encourage the contestants. As the competition came to an end, Klink and Schwen were declared the winners.

"I'm really surprised; I was not expecting to win," Klink said. "I thought [the competition] was really well done. I'm just happy with how I climbed."

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