OUS-Bobcat Bash-1

Team “Hit Me with Your Best Shot” was the winner of the 23rd Annual Ohio University Southern Bobcat Bash Nov. 7 at the Proctorville Center.

OUS-Bobcat Bash-2

Lauren Gilmore gets her face painted at the 23rd Annual Ohio University Southern Bobcat Bash.

OUS-Bobcat Bash-3

Teams engage in a heated volleyball tournament at the 23rd Annual Ohio University Southern Bobcat Bash.

Featured Stories


Southern Campus community unites at 23rd annual Bobcat Bash


PROCTORVILLE, Ohio – In its 23rd year, the Ohio University Southern Bobcat Bash brought students, alumni, staff, donors and their families to the Proctorville Center on Nov. 7. However, this is not merely an annual volleyball tournament that brings out more than 200 participants each year. The Bobcat Bash has become a deep tradition for the University community and a chance to celebrate autumn and campus life. 

Jenny Gilmore, an Ohio University Southern graduate, began coming to the event seven years ago as a student and continues to participate each year. This year, her daughters Marlie, currently a student at the Southern Campus, and Lauren – along with her granddaughter Trinady – were in attendance. 

“I first started coming to the Bobcat Bash when I was a student as a way to show my school spirit,” Gilmore said. “Now I come and bring my family because I believe education is very important to this area. I want to support the University and events like this so that they’ll be here for the future.” 

Retired art instructor Gary Tillis, one of the event’s co-founders, mirrored these sentiments. “Many Southern students take the majority of their classes in Proctorville and don’t get to take part in the activities in Ironton,” he said. 

Tillis continued, “Despite being a non-residential campus, we want to make sure that they still have a campus experience. We started the Bobcat Bash as a way to get out of the classroom and in a setting where they could have fun and get to know their fellow students.” 

The director of the Proctorville Center, Stephanie Burcham, described the Bobcat Bash as an event that is as much about University service as it is a competition. Burcham said that she loves to see the faculty and staff members who come to the event each year. 

“Many members of our University community give up their Saturday to help make the Bobcat Bash a success year after year. The fact that they are willing to challenge students in a game of volleyball, act as a team coach, or just chat– often in less than perfect weather – shows how much OUS faculty and staff value the students and their families,” added Burcham. 

Proctorville Student Service Specialist and organizer of this year’s event, Corbin Purdum, said that although the event takes a lot of time and effort, it’s great to see the students enjoying their time together. “Our volunteers give a lot of their time to make this event successful year after year,” Purdum said. “I love to see the competition and comradery during the Bobcat Bash– makes it all worthwhile.”

Year-after-year the Bobcat Bash inspires competitive teams for the volleyball tournament that is at the heart of this event. This year, “Hit Me with Your Best Shot,” led by team captain Brooke Irby, took home the top prize. Second place went to “Notorious D.I.G.,” led by team captain Jamie Phillips. “Dat Ace Doe,” led by team captain Brett Curry, took home third place.