April 7, 2002.

Think of a game, or more of a sport, that requires strategy, stength, accuracy, and courage to compete in. The number one answer is Raquetball. But my friends, in close second, is Hall Ball. Hall Ball, or HB for short, has been sweeping dorm halls on college campuses for appromixately 28 hours since its creation on April 6, 2002. Stay tuned for the unveiling of the best sport known to mankind.

History of Hall Ball
Hall Ball was accidently discovered by two studly young freshmen at James Madison University. Patrick "Smitty" Smith was stumbling home from a night on the town and as he passed through the pitch black Godwin Field, a bright white lacrosse ball was directly in his sight. It was like it was saying "Smitty, take me home with you tonight." So he could simply not refuse because he knew this was his true calling. For two days, the ball stayed in his dorm room underneath his dirty clothes and bowls of dried up Easy Mac. But an unearthly vibe was being picked up by all visitors to his room. Smitty thought for a bit, and realized... it is the Ball. He grabbed it and never let it leave his sight. Strolling down the hall to see his pal, James Matarese, Smitty continued to bounce the ball. James asked, "What is that?" Smitty said, "It may look like a standard LAX ball, but it is ball that is much more capable of other purposes." The two young bucks walked out in the hall, and started rolling the ball back and forth. Thus, Hall Ball was born.

Below are the two studly inventors of Hall Ball (watch and see their brilliance at work)

Notice Big Rob in the background.

The Rebirth of Hall Ball
Hall Ball died three hours after its creation. How? Our hallmate, Steve Filingeri, became obsessively jealous and threw our magic Ball on top of our eight floor dormitory. Yes, the ball remains on the roof of the 110 foot building. He tried to make it up to us by offering us a shoddy fake raquetball. We attempted to play with this ball, but it was not the same. We thought Hall Ball was doomed. Steve ultimately made it up to us by finding us a new NCAA standard lacrosse ball. Thus, the rebirth of Hall Ball.

What the Hell is Hall Ball?
Hall Ball is game. No, it is a sport. A violent sport. Only the strong survive. You only need a long, narrow hall (Eagle Hall dorm is ideal), and a hard, rubber ball. A lacrosse is the official ball of Hall Ball simply because it is the ball that started it all. The object of the game is to hit the hall, or door, or whatever the hell is behind the opponent. Think of a hockey goaltender guarding his net. Or a soccer keeper protecting his goal. Or bowling but with a guy standing in front of the pins trying to stop you from hitting the pins. Obviously, the object is to hit the pins. But in Hall Ball, there are no pins. Got it? Good. The ball must be flung underhand or sidearmed. The ball must bounce at least once before scoring. No protective gear is worn. Smitty doesn't even wear shoes!

More About the Game of Hall Ball
The game is played to 10 points. A point in Hall Ball is called a "bucket". A bucket is scored when the ball makes contact with any of the area behind the opponent. Keep in mind the ball must bounce at least once on the floor to be counted as a bucket, so this eliminates any jackasses who try to toss the ball straight at your head (Phil). The coveted "Triple Bucket" is the rarest and greatest feat in all of Hall Ball. Kinda like the Triple Crown, but not really. To achieve a Triple Bucket, you must score three straight buckets. Not only do obtain bragging rights as you have just shitted on your opponent, but your score is DOUBLED. Yes, I shit you not. DOUBLED. For instance, I have three buckets and James has the usual one bucket. I score three straight buckets on my next three possesions. That gives me the score of six, then it is DOUBLED. Which gives me the score of 12 and the win, over James' 1 bucket.
You might think that this game is easy. Boy, could you ever be so wrong. An official Hall Ball (NCAA Standard LAX Ball) is made out of hard ass rubber. The strategy of the game is to roll or fling the ball with different spins because a Hall Ball is frickin unpredictable. And since you are not wearing any protective gear, stopping the Ball is more dangerous than it is safe. And not to mention the different doors and uneven surfaces along the walls that provide erratic bounces. Also, you must look out for the numerous fire alarms and sprinkler heads that, if hit with the Ball, will set off the alarm and cause the evactuation of the largest building in the city of Harrisonburg. Not only does this suck, but your ass gets beat. Below is a standard bird's eye view of a Hall Ball court, or a wing of Eagle Hall. (The small rectangles are the doors in the Hall, the circle is the Ball, and the X's are the two players.)

The ball does not always follow this path shown above. The players usually move to attempt to stop the Ball as well. Sometimes the Ball hits doors and the different dents in the wall to cause the Ball to not follow its intended path. When the Ball does not reach its target, this is known as a "Hall Ball Stall".

The Hall Ballas
Currently, the only official Hall Ballas are Smitty, James, Steve, Phil, and Pete. If you think you have what it takes to play, then give the Hall Ballas a holla.

The Pictures

Here is one end of the Hall Ball Court. Notice there is a window and below that, a furnace. The attacker shooting on this end must be somewhat careful because they get blamed if anything breaks.

The other end of the Hall Ball court. There is a door on this end.

Here is the official Hall Ball. It is not the original Hall Ball, but merely an offspring.

As I said before, we must look out for the Fire Hazards. Notice two sprinkler heads, a smoke detector, and the big red fire alarm. They all will meet their demise should they come in contact with the Hall Ball.

Here is my finger after I smacked it on the edge of the open window. The willingess to sacrifice one's body is vital to the sport of Hall Ball.

Here is Rob, one of the hallmates. He always manages to come out of his room during one of our games of Hall Ball. Hall Ball is not a spectator sport simply because there is no room in the hall besides the two competitors. He does not look very happy.

Here is a move that seems to work very well. The ball is released so the ball is given a backspin. I call it the Flick. The Flick stuns unprepared opponents because on the second bounce, it flies forward with unmatched velocity.

Here is Steve's portrayal of the Twist. Giving the ball a crazy spin is practically unstoppable by even the most advanced Hall Ballas.

Here is Peter, one of the original Hall Ballas. We accidently misplaced the Hall Ball, so a balled up sock was used as a temporary prop. He is still as fierce as ever.

A picture of me (Smitty).

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