Northwood Esports won the Collegiate Valorant National Championship Wednesday, June 7, at Riot Games Arena in Los Angeles, California.
“This team has accomplished so much in the previous year — I am proud to have them representing Northwood University, and we are fortunate to have them as students,” stated Coach Cody Elsen, who directs Northwood University’s Esports program. “I expect this team to continue dominating collegiate Valorant and begin to make a name in the semi-professional scene as well.”
The team includes Ali Salahedin of New Jersey; Jeffery Tomaszek of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin; Benjamin Park of Richmond, Virginia; Michael Herrera of Dallas, Texas; and Hunter McMillan of McLeansville, North Carolina.
This past year, they competed against over 500 colleges and went 28-0 in the North Conference, securing the No. 1 seed in the national playoff bracket. In the playoffs this week, the Timberwolves defeated Oklahoma Wesleyan University, Converse University, Rutgers University, Blinn College, and Winthrop University 3-2 in the grand finals.
In other esports news, Northwood players on two Rocket Leagues traveled to Dallas, Texas, on June 2 to defend their 2022 Rocket League World Championship title. Unfortunately, the Timberwolves fell short, placing No. 3 and No. 9, respectively.
“Although this is not the result we wanted, I am still grateful for the players who put in so much effort all year,” Elsen stated. “Having two teams qualify for world championships was something special to see. We will be back next year to regain our world crown.”
Esports is an umbrella for numerous competitive games, similar to a university’s athletics department is an umbrella for numerous traditional competitive sports. So Valorant and Rocket League are to an esports program what baseball and soccer are to a university’s athletics program.
For information about Northwood Esports, visit https://esports.northwood.edu/.