College League of Legends
The UCI Esports League of Legends team ended their 2021 collegiate season early with a 4-2 record in the regular season, unable to qualify for the Western Conference Playoffs.
This year’s Western Conference consisted of 49 collegiate teams, with the top two teams qualifying for the national championship.
UCI Esports fell to 5th seed Cal State Fullerton during week 3 of the six-week regular season and to 1st seed University of British Columbia during week 6. This marks UCI Esports’ first time not qualifying for the Western Conference playoffs since 2016.
The League of Legends roster underwent a significant overhaul this year, bidding farewell to graduating players Avi Behar and Jeffrey Du and welcoming four new rookies.
“We’re going through a building year right now,” stated David “Hermes” Tu, head coach of League of Legends. “There are big shoes left to fill considering the legacy we have here at UCI. But I’m confident that with our rookies gaining more experience, we can reclaim the throne as leaders in the Western Conference.”
UCI’s League of Legends team will continue to develop its new talent for the remainder of the 2021 academic year. After the season, they recently competed in the Upsurge Premier League against rival collegiate teams Maryville University and the University of Texas, Dallas.
Overwatch Collegiate Championship
On April 10th and 11th of this year, the UCI Esports Overwatch team ended their 2021 competitive season, finishing strong in the top 4, making it to the semifinals.
The Overwatch Collegiate Championship is Activision Blizzard’s official tournament circuit designed and purposed for college teams to compete against each other through a multi-layered tournament spanning the academic year.
In 2021, the tournament had a whopping 304 teams, 2500+ players, and 227 unique schools across the United States and Canada duking it out for their slice of the $48,000 scholarship prize and recognition as the best in North America.
Our team practiced, studied, and competed fiercely from start to end, leaving national swiss with an impressive score of 9-1 and seeding 6th nationally.
During the playoffs, UCI Esports bested 27th seed GMU, 11th seed Boise State, and 3rd seed Bellevue University on their way to the top, meeting 2nd seed Maryville University in the semifinals. Maryville would proceed to play in the finals against Northwood University and win, cementing themselves as the champions of this year.
Concerning the team, their performance, and the season as a whole, this is what UCI Esports’ coaches had to say.
I am so privileged to have been able to work alongside such hardworking and tenacious student-athletes. Our players this year truly gave it their best, their hearts were truly in the game and with each other, and that’s all we ask for. With a sample of victory, our team was so close to the precipice, and they’re hungry to give it another go next year with renewed confidence and the solid foundation we’ve built this year.Ronald “Renanthera” Ly
I’m incredibly proud of our players for the resilience they’ve shown throughout the season. Like any other team this year, life has thrown a lot at us, and we’ve persevered to be able to deal with it and still push towards being a top collegiate team. I’m thankful for all of their hard work and especially the environment they all help to create. I look forward to every practice and match knowing we’re all in it together and propping each other up to succeed as a team.Michael “The” Kuhns
UCI Esports closed out the season as the #1 school on the West Coast and 3rd-4th across all of North America.
Regarding the program’s competitive year as a whole, we asked our director for a few words.
I am very proud of the program and our work during this very strange year. All of our coaches have worked tirelessly this year to cultivate a community and a culture focused on caring for one another, playing for their teams, and making those connections palpable despite the global pandemic. Our League of Legends team has gone through a tough rebuilding year, and we’ve crafted a strong foundation for the next. Our Overwatch team ended the best in the west, but I know our players and staff aren’t going to be satisfied with just that either. We’re already planning and plotting for what comes next, and it’s beautiful to see the teams already hard at work preparing for success next year.Mark Deppe