First-year University of Mary Washington student Brianna Miles had a plan for besting her opponent in the Rocky River Log Roll challenge – keep her fleet planted and move her body just a bit. And it worked!
The giant inflatable game was one of many matches set up last week on Jefferson Square for a uniquely UMW competition called Devil-Goat Day.
“Everyone I talked to was excited about it,” Miles, who’s studying historic preservation and art history, said of the event, a tradition that dates back to the 1920s. “I’ve only been here a little while and I’m already having fun.”
Her victory counted toward the Goats’ tally in the high-energy annual contest of school spirit, where Devils, who graduate in odd years, and Goats, who graduate in even years, vie to collect the most points for participation and wins. The top-scoring team walks away with bragging rights … until the following year when Devil-Goat Day happens all over again.
Hundreds of students battled it out on Thursday, April 20, in jousting and bull-riding-type contests, and matchups like Zap-A-Mole and the Toxic Twister, but the day’s ultimate challenge is the epic tug-of-war match between the two teams. Despite a broken rope that led to a tug-of-war tie, the Goats claimed the day this time around, ending a five-year winning streak by the Devils.
Whatever the outcome each spring, said Dean of Students Melissa Jones, it’s all in good fun.
“I think it’s so important for our entire community,” she said. “It’s a wonderful way for us to come together and celebrate the time we’ve spent together all year.”