Esports team plays in first memorable tournament


provided by Brandon Bousquette

Online game “League of Legends” is set up on junior Brandon Bosquette’s computers. The esports team recently competed in the first tournament.

Clare O'Connor, Assistant Editor

The varsity and junior varsity “League of Legends” esports teams played in their first tournament over the past month as a part of the Illinois High School Esports Association League.

Each bracket of the tournament was made up of five matches that each consisted of two to four games played over a span of three weeks. Neither team won their first tournament but both were excited to finally participate in their first official competition. 

“We only ended up winning one of our matches, and a few games within some other matches but each win we got felt great,” junior Brandon Bousquette, the varsity team captain, said. “It was clear that the guys we were playing had spent a lot more time playing ‘League’ than us. Still, it was a great experience.”

The esports club had its first meeting Feb. 4 and has been practicing together for the last few months. The esports club has teams for “League of Legends,” “Fortnite” and “Valorant,” but they have only been able to compete in League of Legends thus far.

“Practice is great because it’s really just playing games together,” Brandon said. “We have students from different grades so it’s been great getting to know them though playing ‘League’ together.”

We have students from different grades so it’s been great getting to know them though playing ‘League’ together.”

— Brandon Bousquette

An individual “League of Legends” game can take as little as 15 minutes to over an hour, depending on the game. 

Juan Chaides, a sophomore who plays support for the junior varsity team, explained that if a game has a clear winner early on, the other team will surrender. However, close games can stretch out as evenly matched teams try to gain an advantage. 

“One of our games lasted almost an hour,” Juan said. “We were feeling pretty good in the early game but the other team scaled really well. They gained levels at the start which meant that later in the game, their attacks were just more powerful. There’s just nothing we could do at that point.”

Juan said that losing after a long game was demoralizing, but he also felt happy with how the team worked together and remained calm.

“Throughout the whole game the team is communicating,” Juan said. “We need to coordinate attacks, ask for help when we get in a bad fight, and tell each other about the other team’s positioning.”

While neither team won their bracket, the players felt that they have improved their communication, gameplay and team dynamic after only a few months of playing as a team.

“League is a team game and when you’re in the heat of it,” Juan said. “It’s easy to get worked up, but I think our team did well at congratulating each other on good plays and being positive about losses.”