UNO Ambassadors See Highest Participation Yet in Swampball, a University Tradition

Swampball, a new tradition at the University of New Orleans, reached a new pinnacle on Sunday as organizers saw the event’s highest participation rate ever and a fourth straight tournament win by a student team named 3-D.

Nearly 300 students gathered at 10 a.m. Saturday at two mud pits dug into a campus quadrangle near the University Library and filled with water. Until 7 p.m., 40 teams of six to eight players competed cutthroat at pool-style volleyball, playing knee deep in the mud.

The event was hosted by the UNO Ambassadors, a service organization run through the UNO President’s Office. The UNO Ambassadors introduce current and prospective students, as well as friends and alumni of UNO, to campus life in a variety of ways and can often be seen around campus hosting social events and otherwise injecting energy to University events and showcasing the school.

“It was the largest one yet. We had to turn teams away because we couldn’t handle more than 40,” said Blake Edwards, a UNO Student Ambassador who helped to host Swampball for the fourth time. “We’re going to see how spring goes and if we have 30 or 40 teams, we’re going to have to have a third pit. It was a long day.”

The event, funded by the University's Student Government Organization, aimed to raise money for student scholarships and provide an opportunity for campus fun. A team named 3-D won the coveted "Wilson" trophy, a gold-painted volleyball with big smile, for the fourth straight season.

“We’re wondering when they’re going to retire to give someone else a chance,” said Edwards.

The tournament, inspired by the Oozeball tradition at the University of Connecticut, helped to raise more than $2,000 in scholarship money, aimed to help fund one academic-based scholarship, one leadership-based scholarship and one service-based scholarship for UNO students.

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