Welcome to the first weekly eSports report, where we will be giving updates on our competitive teams based on their performances throughout the week. Since this is the first report of the season, and some of our teams started a few weeks ago, we will have more to fill you in on. We will start with our group of Rocket League teams.
The Collegiate Rocket League started with 2 open qualifiers for each region (North, South, East, and West). Kansas State fielded 4 teams in the each of the North regional qualifiers, were the top 4 teams would advance to conference play. In the first week two of our teams made it into the round of 16 after the first day of play. Moving into day 2, both of our teams found themselves on the loser’s side of the bracket needing to win out in order to qualify. KSU-Powercat, consisting of Taxicab, Ratatat, and Nebulous, was lost to the MTU Huskies 3-1. Our second team, KSU-Purple consisting of Sears, Gumby, and Yief, advanced to the round of 8 where they squared of against the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point. After an intense match, they eventually fell, losing 3-2. UWSP went on to qualify for the regional conference after defeating Colorado, 3-2.
Going into the second qualifier, our teams were very optimistic about their chances of qualifying, especially after team Purple beat Colorado in a Collegiate Carball Association (CCA) mid week tournament. After day 1, we had 3 teams in the round of 16 with team Purple being on the winners side of the bracket. Day 2 saw some misfortunes as our third team was eliminated in the round of 16, and Team Purple lost to York University 3-1. The round of 12 was up next with team Powercat facing off against Raven’s Red from Carleton University, and Team Purple facing off against Colorado once again. Raven’s Red would go on to beat team Powercat 3-0, ending their hopes of qualifying for conference play and placing Kansas State’s chances of qualifying on team Purple’s shoulders. The match started with Colorado taking a 2-0 lead in the series, but K-State fought back and tied it up 2-2. With everything on the line for 2 teams that both deserved to qualify, Colorado eliminated the last K-State team in game five with a score of 3-1. All hope was not lost for our teams as the Open Ladder offered one last chance to qualify for regional playoffs, and a chance at winning scholarships.
The Open Ladder would see the top 2 teams from each region move up to conference play for the bracket stage of regional play after week 4. Week 1 saw KSU-Purple face off against McMaster and UConn, and KSU-Powercat against Illinois State Black and University of Rockester. Both teams were able to take down their opponents and start out 2-0 in Open Ladder play. Week 2 would see team Purple match up against Northeastern Black and the MTU Huskies, who were ranked #9 in region in a players poll done by the CCA. They were able to pick apart Northeastern, winning 3-0 and came away with the victory over MTU, winning 3-1. Team Powercat matched up against Texas A&M Clangers and Washington State, but were unfortunately beat by both of them. This put KSU-Purple at 4-0 and tied for 3rd in the leader board, and KSU-Powercat at 2-2 and tied for 42nd. Team Purple is currently ranked 3rd among teams from the north region behind Purdue and Ohio State, who are ranked 1st and 2nd respectively as of week 2. They will also be squaring off against both of them this week in matches that will likely determine who moves up to the playoffs. Team Powercat will be facing off against Illinois State Red and Austin Community College as they look to rebound from last week.
Heroes of the Storm
This year, our program was looking to rebuild our HotS team behind the knowledge of Jared “Syn” Karsmizki, a member of the 2015 team that reached the round of 16 and was broadcast on ESPN. The goal was to form a team out of plat/low diamond league players and to slowly work on team play throughout the Heroes of the Storm Training Grounds in preparation for Heroes of the Dorm in the Spring. The team came together with Cody “Spuce” Baldwin as the main tank and shot caller, Jake “Jaykonus” Honas as DPS, Tucker “Yabbbyyy” Pierce as secondary DPS, Matthew “Programmer” Johnstone at flex, and Noah “Yurmum” Harvey at support. Most of the team was new to HotS and nearly everyone was new to playing on a competitive team, but that hasn’t stopped the team from finding early success. The first week saw K-State match up against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Long Bus Armada and uMass’s MMD1. Our fledgling team was able to play the map very well against Long Bus Armada and took the series 2-0. uMass was going to prove a more difficult opponent as a close game 1 was played that saw K-State come out on top. In the next game uMass was able to hold KSU at bay and out scale them leading to the series being tied at 1-1. Game 3 saw the new team run into a few problems with positioning and team fight focus and uMass was able to take the series 2-1. Over all week 1 record was 3-2 and the team found areas that it would look to improve going into the next week.
Week 2 saw K-State matching up against CWRU and the University of Washington. Our team came ready to play and dismantled U of W in game 1. Game 2 saw the team being stumped by a strategy that can only be described as “cheese.” U of W was able to 5 man a fort at level one on Warhead Junction and as soon as the team reached level 10 they used Lt. Morales’s Medivac ship to fly to the K-State’s keep and take it. after getting wiped they then proceeded to do the same thing and destroyed the core to tie up the series at 1-1. Game 3 saw a return of normal game play and a return to K-State Macro play to win the series 2-1. The series against CWRU started off a little shaky, but saw a quick 2-0 by Kansas State giving them a 2-0 record on the weekend and a 3-1 record overall. After the leaderboard was updated, KSU eSports found themselves in a 3 way tie for 21st in the nation. The team will square off against Dakota State University’s Technically Better A and Academy of Art University’s Urban Knights.
Our Overwatch squad are a couple of weeks into the TCS: Overwatch and have gotten off the ground and are starting to take flight. Week 1 saw them match up against University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, A.K.A. MKE eSports. MKE caught our team sleeping a bit in game two and forced game 3 to decide the match. After a hard fought battle, KSU eSports was able to come out on top and take the victory 2-1. Our week 2 opponent would be the Brock Badgers of Brock University. Our team was able to regroup after the slight scare from the week before and won the series 2-0, giving them an overall record of 2-0. Going into week 3 they are scheduled to play Purdue in a match that will be streamed this Thursday on Tespa’s Twitch Channel at 9:20 p.m. The team is full of confidence going into the match and looking to advance to 3-0.
The Hearthstone Training grounds have officially started and this year K-State has 3 teams entered in, the Wildcards, WildKAT, and Wildcats roar. Week one was a bit of a rough start for 2 of our teams as the Wildcards fell to Ryerson University 3-0 and WildKAT lost to SIUE 3-0. However it wasn’t all bad as Wildcats Roar was able to beat the FUS barons 3-0. Luckily our teams were able to rebound as they all were able to win in week 2, Wildcards with a 3-2 win over University of Wisconsin – Madison, WildKAT with a 3-2 victory over University of Chicago, and Wildcats Roar with a 3-0 over Kent State University. This leaves Wildcats Roar at 2-0, and both Wildcards and WildKAT at 1-1. this week will see Wildcats Roar take on Kentucky, Wildcards taking on NIU, and WildKAT taking on University of Northern Iowa.
Counter Strike and Dota 2
Both Counter Strike and Dota 2 will be kicking off this weekend as they compete in the Collegiate Star League. CS:GO will be squaring of against the University of Northern Iowa Panthers and the Dota team will be facing off against the University of Houston.
This Concludes the first eSports report. We thank you for reading and hope you return next week.