E-sports team finds success in second season

Desmond Ramirez, Staff Writer

Greeley West introduced their CHSAA-sanctioned activity e-sports team last year. For their second year they are looking pretty strong, having two teams predicted to make the playoffs in Super Smash Bros. and Rocket League. In total there are three games that are offered to play and compete in: Rocket League, Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. E-sports Coach Mr. Joel Suarez stated “It is a way for more students to get involved, getting more practice on reflexes, motor skills and critical thinking.”

However, some remain skeptical of e-sports. However, it exists as an outlet for students to attain higher education. Suarez said “This isn’t just simply playing video games, there are now scholarships out there for playing video games. Colleges are now having their own e-sports teams to compete against each other.”

And e-sports doesn’t just help students in the future. Suarez said “Since we are CHSAA affiliated, eligibility also ties into it. So it gives a motivation for kids to keep up with their classes to be able to compete.”

 This program involves about 20 students participating and competing while playing one of their favorite games. They can host their own team practices or they can practice on their own time.  The amount of flexibility for scheduling around games is easier than other sports.

Rocket League Player Austin Burns stated “Yes, it does differ from other sports, but we still compete and try to beat who we are playing. In a lot of ways it is still similar to the high level of competition, and you still gotta put in the work to compete. But honestly, it’s just more of a mind game than a lot of the other sports.”

Suarez stated that when it was announced that an e-sports team was going to be at Greeley West, some of the fellow teachers were confused on it and even calling it stupid.

Suarez stated, “We were divided when we first got started. I have had people tell me that e-sports was stupid but also heard teachers say its cool to be doing this. Its just a work a progress trying to get people to see it in a positive light.”