The buzz of excitement was evident on May 6 and 7 as 90 students gathered from nine participating high schools across the region and competed in the Southwest Ohio Esports Regional Tournament.
Teams were decked out in their school colors as they entered the 5,500-square-foot, state-of-the-art esports lab. Nine local high schools including the following below, competed in the regional tournament.
Full List of Esports Ohio HS member schools
The atmosphere in the esports lab was electric, with rapid clicking sounds of numerous controllers filling the air, accompanied by the occasional roar of team members after an impressive play.
The tournament was the brainchild of teachers who created Esports Ohio, a free-to-join educational nonprofit organization and league for students. For the Esports Innovation Lab, the tournament was an opportunity to engage with the regional esports community and recruit potential UC students.
“UC Esports is building relationships with multiple high schools and districts in the region. As we look to expand our efforts, Esports Ohio is a great partner to help us achieve this goal,” said Patty Moser, director of experience and events in the 1819 Innovation Hub.
“In addition to the competition, the event aimed to expose high school students to the university campus and its academic programs and provide opportunities to meet with current students and faculty. Representatives were available to provide guidance and answer questions for students already considering UC as their choice for undergraduate studies.”
The tournament featured popular esports games, including:
- Rocket League
- Super Smash Bros.
Winning teams received trophies and the opportunity to compete in the inaugural state championship on May 19 in Akron, Ohio.
“It was an exciting weekend and a great opportunity for UC Esports Lab to showcase our space and build relationships with the broader Ohio academic community,” Moser said. “It was exciting to witness the students strategizing while demonstrating teamwork and collaboration, just a few of the skills esports cultivates. For the university, it was a chance to demonstrate UC’s commitment to innovation and engagement in the rapidly evolving world of esports.”
On Sunday, students filed out of the UC Esports Lab, tired but exhilarated. For some, it could be the beginning of a journey that leads them back to UC as future students, esports competitors and members of a vibrant and growing campus and global community.
Featured image at top: The UC Esports Lab hosts high school students in the Southwest Ohio Esports Regional Tournament. Photos/provided
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