Paint party: TCU paintball team ranked No.15 in nation

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    Highly ranked athletic programs have become the norm rather than the exception for TCU, and the club paintball team is no different.

    The TCU Paintball team, a university club sport, is currently ranked No. 15 out of 86 teams in the National Collegiate Paintball Association rankings.

    Junior team member Amir Tafarroji said good competition was hard to find around Fort Worth. The team will drive more than 100 miles to practice at Weber’s Paintball near Temple, he said.

    “We think Weber’s is one of the best fields in the state,” Tafarroji said.

    Sophomore team member Hunter Kosmala said players go through 2,000 paintballs in one practice, but dodging thousands of paintballs is what makes playing exciting.

    “When you are running and diving and shooting and other people are shooting at you, just the intensity that it has is a lot of fun,” Kosmala said.

    The team will compete in its first tournament of the season Saturday in Springdale, Ark. Tournaments consist of teams from around the country vying for the No. 1 spot in the NCPA rankings.

    The goal in paintball tournaments is to dodge paintballs from behind a “bunker” while trying to hit the competition on the other side of the field, Tafarroji said. The team tries to eliminate all of the opponents while keeping as many of their players “alive.” The winning team must retrieve the flag placed in the middle of the field and return it to the opponent’s starting point.

    It only takes one paintball anywhere on the body or equipment to eliminate a player.

    Tafarroji said each team receives a certain amount of points that will compute into their NCPA rankings. The team is looking for more members to join and compete in the NCPA Championships this year in Lakeland, Fla.

    The only female member on the team, sophomore political science major Jennifer Ulich, said more women should give paintball a try.

    “Girls are actually really good at playing paintball because we are small and fast and we can, like, get down in those bunkers,” Ulich said. “So I don’t know why more girls don’t play it, but I think they definitely should.”

    Ulich and other team members said the game’s adrenaline rush keeps them coming back to take a shot at a national championship.

    TCU Paintball team

    For more information or to join, e-mail Amir Tafarroji at amir.tafarroji@tcu.edu, or ask about the Paintball Club at the University Recreation Center.

    Follow the TCU Paintball team on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/TCU-Paintball-Team/136177881673?ref