Washington State University held their first ever “Global Gauntlet” esports tournament for Rocket League amongst their multiple campuses, concluding this past week. The fully online virtual event saw 53 students competing against each other, with prizes awarded to the top three places.

“This tournament was everything I’d hoped for,” said WSU Esports Coordinator James Hoplin. “We had some amazing matchups, and the skill level across the board was incredible. It was also amazing to see the student support and passion from every campus that participated.”

The tournament, sponsored by WSU’s Global Campus and produced by their collegiate esports partner Electronic Gaming Federation, began back in late March. Students from all of WSU’s campuses came together to compete over the following weeks, with the semifinals and finals streamed live on Twitch for fans to watch.

Washington State Esports Bringing Students Together

“We wanted to provide a way for all Cougs to come together around something they are passionate about,” said WSU Global Campus Chancellor Dave Cillay. “We saw seasoned gamers, alongside those who are new to esports, come together from all WSU campuses to compete—and have a lot of fun doing it. I’d call that a huge success.”

The finals match saw a Pullman campus team go up against Team “Candy Shop”, which was comprised of students from the Tri-Cities and Vancouver campuses. After starting the match down 0-2, Team “Candy Shop” managed to clutch out three consecutive rounds, reverse sweeping the Pullman team, winning the tournament 3-2. The team was awarded the first-place prize of an Xbox Series S for each member of the team.

“This tournament was an amazing opportunity for us to come together as players and show off our skills and determination,” said Team “Candy Shop” member Anthony Cromwell. “Everyone on our team understood what their role was and performed that role as needed, resulting in a victory as a team, not as individuals.”

Students who competed in the tournament may receive invitations to join the newly established Global Campus esports team, in which they will receive a $2,500 annual esports scholarship.

In other news, Muskegon Community College recently announced the addition of an esports program to their athletics roster, which you can read about here.

Written By Carter Barnes