RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Over 100 veterans put their wheels to the test, competing in the Fifth Annual Wheelchair Rugby Tournament at the Raleigh Convention Center this weekend.

The Paralyzed Veterans of America hosted the event, along with the only all-veteran team, the Oscar Mike Militia.

With the spin of the wheels, and a few crashes, this game of rugby was no joke.

And that’s exactly what Terrence Smith loves about it.

“The hitting, where you hit the chairs,” laughed the veteran.

For decades, he’s been competing in adaptive sports.

“About 30 years ago, when I got injured, I was down and out. A friend of mine came to my bedside when I was in the hospital,” Smith explained. “Then he convinced me to play in the wheelchair games.”

In those years, the Paralyzed Veterans of America group has grown. They’re working hard on spotlighting adaptive sports, and the physical and mental benefits for these veterans.

“The mentorship. When you have a novice player with someone who’s been around a long time, there’s a comradery and that friendship goes on forever,” said Jennifer Purser, the Senior Associate Director for Sports and Recreation for PVA.

While players work hard during the 48 games in the tournament to win the “Code of Honor” cup, they know the real prize they all win is the sense of community.

“I love seeing the smiles. The people, the crashes, the action that takes place. And the families. It’s a great atmosphere,” said Fabio Villarroel, with PVA’s Sports & Rec department. 

“Just being a veteran and seeing all of the other veterans here,” said Smith, with a smile.

Organizers hope others will take a chance, watch the tournament and learn something new.

“This allows us to educate the community on how to support people with disabilities and challenges,” added Purser.

The tournament runs through Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Raleigh Convention Center.