KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan - The 702nd Brigade Support Battalion, "The Deuce," celebrated the mid-point of its Afghanistan tour in support of the Fourth Brigade Combat Team, Second Infantry Division, with a competition here March 17.
"This was encouragement for the soldiers and to remind them that even though we're far from home we're not totally separate," said Capt. Soojin Chang, the battalion chaplain. "Hopefully, this will boost our morale and we'll finish strong."
Each company selected four soldiers to represent them in the competition. The teams ran a circuit course of ten events with one minute to score as many points as possible at each stop. Events included pull-ups, jump rope, free throws, push-ups, corn hole, box jump, three-pointers, tire pull, miniature golf and horseshoes. An individual competition was also open to all Soldiers for each event.
"It was a good chance to unwind. We needed that," said Spc. Nathan Fanton of Company C.
Spc. Kelly Nering of Headquarters and Headquarters Company agreed.
"It was a really good idea to bring up morale," she said. "It's good to see all the companies compete and being good sports about it. I think it was a success."
Company C captured the win with a narrow one-point victory over Headquarters and Headquarters Company. Company A placed third. The winning company was presented with a plaque that included the unit's motto, "Mend the broken sword." Individual winners were awarded an identical, but smaller, plaque.
"We never lose," joked Capt. Tristan Manning, Company C commander. "The competition was fierce, but I have confidence in my soldiers. They had fun doing it, which was what was important."
The competition, however, was not as important as what it represented, said Lt. Col. Scot Doboszenski, the battalion commander.
"Soldiers in general love to compete," he said. "This was a good way to build espirit de corps and spend time together. Taking opportunities to do stuff other than the mission really allows soldiers to take a break and reset."
The battalion is headquartered at Fort Lewis-McChord, Wash.