By MICHAEL CHEN
As a participant in the North America Scholastic Esports Foundation (NASEF), UHS eSports has recently won a double-elimination bracket in an Overwatch NASEF Grand Championship, securing a position in their next tournament occurring on Saturday, January 30th.
This most recent Grand Championship tournament was against both scholastic teams as well as Tier 4 semi-professional teams. To date in the Fall season, UHS eSports has played 14 games with a record of 11-3, placing the team third in the conference. UHS eSports has advanced across the upper-division bracket with near-perfect gameplay and will continue to hone its skills through practice sessions.
“Despite losing the very first round of the tournament, we [managed] to win 6 straight matches in a row to reach the grand finals,” senior and team captain Anthony Bonfa said. “Our best play throughout the finals was on the map Eichenwald — over 4 of our games held a perfect defense every time and never gave up a single point.”
The Trojan eSports strategy has always been to play smart and support their strongest pieces– a strategy that paid off in the end. The team was able to pull through with a final 3-2 victory on the map Junkertown, securing the championship position. Because of this, UHS eSports became the successful underdogs in the lower division bracket.
“The grand championship was 100% the best our team has ever done. Once we won our first game, we were able to push past our limits and have impeccable communication,” junior team veteran Ashley Srun said. “As for the future, we plan on entering more tournaments just for fun.”
The Overwatch team plans to stick with their original strategy and progress naturally in the upper-division by supporting their best players and keeping tight communications. While the team trains for their next tournament, they acknowledge the challenges of their future endeavors as higher competition levels bring greater pressure. However, the Trojans aim to simply go as far as possible in future tournaments regardless of prestige.
“I plan to keep leading Uni eSports to see just how high of a level we can reach in whatever matches we play. Not to mention, playing Overwatch is joyful in and of itself,” Bonfa said. “Learning all mechanics, characters, and adjusting to each update keeps me interested in improving myself.”
Srun also expressed what she cherished the most as a support player within the team and her motivations to continue playing every season.
“My teammates make the experience super fun, as we build on each other’s energy and always encourage each other with the occasional playful banter. My coach also has been so encouraging and helpful since day one and he has always brought the best out of the team throughout the years.”
“About the Federation.” NASEF, http://www.nasef.org/about/about-the-federation/.
“Game Modes.” Overwatch Wiki, https://overwatch.gamepedia.com/Game_Modes