Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

For the love of the game: Multiple club sports prosper at UA

Courtesy of Alabama Fencing

From badminton to ultimate frisbee, club sports programs instill competition without being affiliated with the NCAA. Alabama has 30 clubs that vary in time commitment and skill levels. 

Alabama’s water skiing team, led by club President Edward Roberts, embraces student-athlete skiers from beginners to world champions. The club competes nearly every year at the National Collegiate Water Ski Association Division 1 Nationals.

“Our tournaments are a lot more laid-back than I think most people would expect,” Roberts said. “While we do care a lot about our performance, and we have a lot of high-performing skiers on the team, our main goal with every trip we take is just to have as much fun as we possibly can.”

In August 2021, former club president and recent UA graduate Sean Hunter helped lead Team USA to win overall gold at the International Waterski and Wakeboard Federation Under 21 Waterski Championships. He won individual gold for his performance in slalom skiing.

The team as a whole is currently on a 15-year streak of winning its regional championships, competing in the South Atlantic Conference with teams like Auburn, Clemson and Florida Southern College. The group has also placed in the top three at its last eight national championships, with its highest placement being second.

The Alabama Water Ski Team meets each Tuesday at Bidgood Hall. The team has its own private lake close to campus in Duncanville, where members hone their skills in slalom, trick and jump skiing variations.

Another high-performing club sport is the University’s fencing club, led by President Konnor Carrie. UA Club Fencing allows students to compete at various levels in foil, epee and saber-style fencing, no matter their skill level.

“Every fencer respects each other and is eager to learn from one another,” Carrie said. “Nobody is ever too good to fence someone else.”

The club participates in tournaments once or twice monthly, with spring being the more active season.

Last year alone, the team competed at Emory, Georgia Tech, UAH, UTK, UGA and Birmingham Fencing Club. 

The team also hosted the 2024 Bama Open for the first time at the Student Recreation Center, where the club practices Monday and Friday nights.

In its first year of competing in individual events, the fencing club brought in two gold medals and two silver medals. Across this last year, it earned one gold medal, one silver medal, and five bronze medals.

In collegiate team events, the epee team placed third, fifth and sixth, respectively, at three separate tournaments.

Altogether, a total of 24 fencers competed last year, bringing in 154 wins across all tournaments.

The fencing club and water skiing team serve as proof that there is more to Alabama’s athletics than meets the eye and that there is a sport for everyone.

“We all just want to have fun and get better at the sport that we all enjoy, so everyone is always happy to help other people on the team, whether it’s with school or skiing or anything,” Roberts said.

Students interested in getting involved in any of the 30 club sports at the University can do so by visiting mySource or Get on Board Day during the fall semester.

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