The promise of scantily-clad volleyball players drew thousands of eager voyeurs downtown Saturday for the sixth annual All Sorority Volleyball Tournament.
Hosted by Alpha Tau Omega, the event featured a crowd of over 4,000 spectators and raised tens of thousands of dollars for the Kidney Cancer Association, according to event organizer Darin Bernstein. This past Saturday also marked the third year in a row that the tournament was held outside of Isla Vista. ASVT was moved to East Beach three years ago when the I.V. Foot Patrol booted the event due to the influx of alcohol-related violations and disturbances.
According to Bernstein, this year’s event proceeded without a hitch.
“There are always going to be some complaints,” Bernstein, a third-year environmental studies major said. “We can’t please everyone, but we did our best. We did really well. It was the most people we’ve ever had. Everything ran smoothly and was well organized, and everyone had a lot of fun.”
Bernstein noted that 24 teams – including one non-panhellenic sorority and three non-UCSB teams from UCLA, UC Davis and Cal Poly – participated in the tournament. The addition of these new teams, he said, was a boon to the event and demonstrates the growing popularity of the tournament.
“It was the first time in recent years that a non-panhellenic sorority participated,” Bernstein said. “[It is exciting] because we don’t want to say that only sororities or certain teams can play. If the swim team wanted to participate, we would accommodate them. We want to stress that this is an event for all of UCSB.”
This year’s tournament also featured the first-ever “Miss ASVT” competition, which awarded the winner $100 to donate to the charity of her choice. According to Bernstein, contenders for the “Miss ASVT” title first had to submit a one-page letter prior detailing their community involvement and dedication. This letter, he said, accounted for fifty percent of the competitor’s score.
Erica Kwiatkowski, a second-year political science major and Alpha Phi member, was crowned Miss ASVT.
“It’s great to be the first winner and to represent not only Alpha Phi, but the whole Greek system in a time when we should really come together,” Kwiatkowski said.
Joe Cole, a UCSB graduate and member of Beta Theta Pi, said the addition of the Miss ASVT competition was a definite crowd-pleaser.
“This is like Christmas for I.V.,” Cole said. “Her boobs just gave me epilepsy.”
Live music and the “Miss ASVT” pageant were added to the event line-up at the urging of the police, Bernstein said, who recommended filling the down time between matches with entertainment to occupy the crowd and keep revelers out of trouble.
At the end of the day, the ASVT championship match saw UCSB’s Alpha Chi Omega and UCLA’s Kappa Alpha Theta face off. UCSB’s AXO ultimately clenched a ‘three-peat,’ claiming the crown for the third consecutive year by a narrow two-point victory.
Veteran player Danee Rose, a third-year art history major, said she was proud of her team’s winning streak.
“There was a lot of pressure this year because we had the title to uphold, but it was a lot of fun,” Rose said. “The last game was really intense, but I’m happy we beat them because I don’t want a UCLA team to beat UCSB.”