THS ESports team wins two championship games

By NATHAN HOWELL | Staff Writer

ALABASTER — Thompson High School’s ESports team is state champions after winning two ASHAA ESports Championship games over the weekend, including their third consecutive win in the League of Legends Championship.

The team brought home the two championships after besting their rivals in the Super Smash Bros. and League of Legends Championships at the Eplex facility in Birmingham on Friday, May 14.

According to THS Head Coach Spencer Stone, the teams have been working hard and dedicating themselves to prepare for this competition.

“We practice three days a week, which the required amount, but these guys play all the time,” Stone explained. “That is really what separates the teams that finish in the middle from the ones at the top. The League of Legends team members have thousands of hours of practice which helps them to compete at a higher level.”

After losing the first game in the League of Legends competition, the team went on to decisively win the next two and clench their third consecutive ASHAA championship title.

“When we lost the first game, I was thinking that we might have to finally learn what it feels like to lose,” Stone said. “It was crazy how we lost the first game, but then went on to sweep the next two for the victory. “

After a harrowing round of games, the team was able to clinch the division title for Super Smash Bros. after defeating Spain Park 2-1.

Stone said that one of the biggest motivating factors for the team was the fans that came along to cheer them on.

“It was great to have fans cheering for our teams,” Stone said. “Even though the players had headsets on they could still hear the crowd cheering. They were really behind our teams as if it were any other sport. That was one of the reasons we were able to make it to the top. When you do something and hear people respond like that it can be very motivating.”

As ESports becomes more popular as an option for students who may not want to play traditional sports, Stone said having the support of the administration, the city and having big name corporate sponsors for the tournaments helps to validate the work they put in every week.

“Being part of the team is huge,” Stone explained. “It really helps my players feel like a part of the school. Having the support of Alabaster City Schools, THS administration and the city adds that extra boost of motivation to succeed in this way.”

The Super Smash Bros. team consisted of Owen Alcorn, John Arguello Ceja, David Foreman and Jay Allen. League of Legends team members were Kobi Thomas, Nolen Young, Cameron Young, Alan Rivas, An Ly and Carter Mandy.