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CLR-17 splashes competition during paintball tournament

Paint pellets flew through the air at the Camp Pendleton Paintball Tournament Field as seven of the base’s most die-hard paintball teams battled for the Pendleton Cup Paintball Tournament trophy, June 18.

The Pendleton Cup Series provides active duty personnel, regardless of skill or experience, an opportunity to take part in a variety of competitive unit sports while competing for monetary prizes to be given to their respective unit’s funds.

The teams that participated in this year’s paintball tournament included “Smash” and “Ball Bustaz” from Combat Logistics Battalion 1, “Red-Patchers” and “Kill-Patch” from Combat Logistics Regiment 17, “Combat RFT” from Assault Craft Unit 5, “Kill” from 9th Communications Battalion, and “Edson Raiders” from Weapons Field Training Battalion.

“There’s just something about paintball that brings out the competitive nature in all of us, said Lance Vargas, front-man, team Smash. “It also brings out a sense of pride because we’re not only playing for ourselves but for our units as well.”

In order to level the playing field, all participants competed using identical paintball guns, which were loaded with 200 rounds for two five-minute matches.

“We wanted to base the tournament on the skill level of the team, not to see who had the biggest and best guns,” said Corey Bennin, sports coordinator, Camp Pendleton Athletic Department. “Since we leveled the playing field, the team’s communication and strategy are put to the test and that is the key to this sport.”

During the matches, teams were awarded points for the number of players still standing and by which team ended the match by capturing the flag in the center of field and returning it back to their post.

“People who don’t understand the sport get confused and think you can just shoot your way to victory,” said Michael Trevino, mid-player, Edson Raiders. “It takes practice and precise communications in order to get your team down the field while eliminating opponents one by one.”

After the three-hour affair, CLB’s team, “Smash”, came out on top with a total of six wins and 18 points. “Kill Patch” of CLR 17, placed second with three wins and seven points.

“The key to our victory was our team work and persistence,” said Vargas. “I can’t wait until next year so we can get back onto the field and do it all over again.”

For more information about participating in the Pendleton Cup Series, contact Camp Pendleton’s athletic director Tom Fisher at (760) 763-5519. All participants must be active duty military.

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