With events such as cylinder stacking, mug throwing and coil building, this week's ceramics competition at Westland High School definitely sounds out of the ordinary.

With events such as cylinder stacking, mug throwing and coil building, this week's ceramics competition at Westland High School definitely sounds out of the ordinary.

Dublin Coffman High School teacher 7 Hoerath will take a team of eight students to Friday's "Feats of Clay" competition organized by the Columbus Clay Co.

According to information from the event, "Feats of Clay" is a "celebration of the art and medium of ceramics."

It's also competitive.

The eight Coffman students have been practicing once a week for about seven weeks, and they recently stepped up preparations to two practices a week.

Hoerath, who teaches ceramics to about 120 students, said it was difficult picking a team.

"There are a bunch of kids who wanted to do it," he said during a practice last week. "I picked kids who are good, but are also fun to have in class. If we had all the best-skilled people here, it wouldn't be as fun."

Fun not competition is supposed to be the name of the game at "Feats of Clay," said Hoerath, who cited one event that doesn't allow students to use hands while forming clay on wheels.

According to the rules for the 10-minute "No Hands Throwing" event, teams of four students have 100 pounds of clay to "throw on the potter's wheel using any part of the body other than hands."

Whatever is created will be judged on height and width.

Other events include cylinder stacking in which students make clay cylinders and stack them on top of one another. The largest stack wins.

Another event challenges students to make the most mugs in 10 minutes, and another has students stacking coils for the tallest creation.

"Basically, we're just doing this for fun," Hoerath said. "And it lets students compare themselves with what's going on at other schools in central Ohio. These are the best kids in the school, so they don't know other people who do (ceramics)."

Lizzy Bryan, a Coffman senior, went to "Feats of Clay" last year and said the competition was fun.

"I like the no-hands (event) because it's so messy," she said. "We had a boy on our team, so he took his shirt off and hugged the clay."

Senior Hafsa Khan is considering doing something in college with ceramics and enjoys the class so much she's taken it six times. This will be her first clay competition, though.

"Since I really like ceramics, it's just one more thing to do," she said.

For freshman Rachel Weber, the competition sounded like a "neat experience. I haven't been there before, but from what everyone says, it sounds like fun."