Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Air Force Academy Spirit

Clash of the Titans challenges competitors in speed, strength, endurance

Clash of the Titans challenges competitors in speed, strength, endurance Photo by Ken Carter

Clash of the Titans challenges competitors in speed, strength, endurance Photo by Ken Carter

By Ann Patton

Academy Spirit staff


Armed with grit and determination, squadrons from the 10th Air Base Wing pitted their best athletes against one another during the inaugural Clash of the Titans competition May 15 at the Preparatory School track and football field.

During the event organized by the Academy Fitness Center and Health and Wellness Center, 17 teams vied for prizes in pull-ups, crunches, push-ups and a relay race. The competition culminated with a tug-of-war in an intense double-elimination challenge.

The 10th Mission Support Squadron finished first in push-ups, the 10th Security Forces Team #2 first in crunches, the 10th Civil Engineer Squadron first in pull-ups and the 10th Dental Squadron first in the relay.

The double-elimination tug-of-war saw the 10th SF Team #2 take first place overall; 10th CE finished second; and, the Direct Reporting Unit finished a strong third.

Before the tug-of-war competition, the Team Wow was honored with a first place win in the HAWC’s biggest loser competition to shed pounds. The six-member team lost a combined total of 99 pounds. Tevita Mafi, with the 10th Medical Operations Squadron, was named top overall loser with a total loss of 37 pounds. Twenty-nine teams competed over 12 weeks and received advice in nutrition and fitness during the program.

“It’s something to have fun with, build camaraderie and help, in essence, fitness,” said 10th Air Base Wing commander Jimmy McMillian. “It’s also Armed Forces Appreciation Day.”

Each team was required to include members of various ranks, plus a civilian and at least one woman.

Scores for crunches and push-ups were totaled on the number completed in one minute. Pull-ups were scored solely on number completed, and the relay race, about 1.5 miles total for seven team members, was based strictly on the fastest time.

The Community Center Chapel contributed food supplies for a cookout for hungry athletes after the competitions, and representatives from In Balance Massage Therapy stood ready to treat sore muscles.

Teams came loaded for bear in terms of competition.

“They’re very serious about it,” said Dirk Spaulding, HAWC health technician.

“I’ve been giving it my all today, and I’m having a blast,” said Jacob Foran, help desk technician with the 10th Communication Squadron.

He eagerly volunteered for his squadron’s team.

Senior Master Sgt. Terry Best-Rennahan, superintendent with the 10th Aerospace Medicine Squadron, served as senior cheerleader and team leader for her team. The pull-ups were her Waterloo. Try as she did, the bar proved too much.

“I gave it my all,” she said with a smile. “I didn’t give up.”

Teams also sported uniforms, some with squadron emblems, others tailored for the event, including the 10th MDSS shirt asking “Who’s your daddy?” on the front and “We’ll find out” on the back.

The “Tired Titans” team from the 10th Medical Support Squadron represented the oldest team members on average. They, too, sported team wear, with member names such as Snuggles and El Supremo emblazoned on the back.

Squadron commander Michael Burke said the team members may not have been the most competitive, but they possessed other superior attributes.

“We are still the best looking and the most stylish,” he joked.

His team finished #13 of 17.

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