After nearly three months of competitive play, only two schools stood atop the hill Sunday afternoon. Maryville and Northwood gave us some of the most exciting Overwatch we’ve seen in months. Going the entire five games, eventually it was Maryville clutching out the 2021 Overwatch Collegiate Championship.

Heirs Assumed

Going into the playoff weekend, Northwood University looked unstoppable. They tore through a number of tough opponents like the Miami Redhawks, and HU Storm as they made their way to the finals. But Maryville made it look even easier. Against San Diego, Washington, and UCI they didn’t drop a map. And in the quarterfinals, they faced the defending champion, Utah Utes, and only dropped one map to them.

So the far and away two strongest teams in the land were set to face each other in the Grand Finals. Northwood, the unstoppable force and assumed champions. And Maryville, the legacy program looking to cement their name in yet another esport. The stage was set and the battle didn’t disappoint.

Early Dominance

Starting off on Oasis, Maryville let it be known that they meant business. From the start of the map, Maryville’s DPS player Papayapete57 was in the middle of every fight. However, the rounds were as evenly matched as we expected them to be. It all came down to the final team fight where Papaya hid in the backline and picked off Northwood’s Landon and ended the push.

Maryville’s momentum extended to the King’s Row map where it was more of the same. But this time it was down to the MU main tank, Cameron popping off along with support player Halo. Cameron made quick work of nearly every push and Halo’s boops on Lucio were nothing short of masterful. Northwood would start making mistakes trying to respond to Maryville’s aggression. While pushing at the second point, Maryville forced NU’s Fishcake to deploy a Sound Barrier that missed the entire team. Because the ult got no value, Maryville pushed on to win the round and eventually the map.

Backwards Brooms?

Moving to match point, Northwood chose to take the match to Rialto, a notoriously long escort map. During their offensive round, Northwood did a decent job of pushing the payload around 80% of the way. Maryville continued to contain NU’s DPS Dynasty and stopped them from completing the push. However, on their offensive round, Northwood played very methodically and patient. Northwood’s main support, Landon, and off-tank, Cowman, would finally come alive. On the third dog leg of point two, a series of fights took place both in and out of hotel. Through key ultimate usage, Northwood held out and forced a game 4.

The Volskaya match saw two of the best defensive rounds we’ve seen all season. First, Maryville held Northwood to just 60% completion on point one. The round was a total team performance where Maryville seemed completely in-synch and poised to win the title. But Northwood had other plans. Even though their round was sloppy and scrappy, the Timberwolves seemed to win team fights. And in the end, it was Maryville throwing out an ill-advised Blizzard that ended up losing the map for them. The reverse sweep was on.

Calm Minds, Crazy Clicks

With the match now going to a game 5, Maryville looked like they might lose it all. But Ilios wasn’t close. Halo turned their Lucio play up to a trillion, completely taking control of the rooftops. By the time Lighthouse came around Northwood looked out of ideas and totally outclassed. So after Halo dropping boops and heals Halo and Cameron mashing out NU with amazing tanking, Maryville would win the day. With the win, Maryville increases their national Esports titles to three. Two CLOL rings and now one shiny Overwatch Collegiate Championship.

Featured Image: @MaryvilleGG

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