ESports State Championships

Nexus Nabbers: RRHS Rams Capture First ESports State Title
Posted on 04/30/2019

RRHS Esports team with championship medals - courtesy NMAA

In this sport, nobody (at least nobody human) runs, jumps, swings a bat, or dunks a ball.  The opposing teams aren’t even in the same room – or often, the same county.  In the newly sanctioned “activity” of ESports, all the action – and there’s lots of it! – is online. 

In this new discipline, the Rio Rancho Rams reign supreme.  (The photos in this article, including this one of the happy winners, are courtesy of the NMAA.)

NMAA coverage of the ESports state finals

Playoff brackets:
    --League of Legends (.pdf)
    --Rocket League (.pdf)
    --Smite (.pdf)

NMAA ESports website

The Rams clinched New Mexico’s first-ever state championship in ESports with playoff victories in two of the three contested games: League of Legends and Rocket League.  In League of Legends, the Rams defeated Sandia Prep 2-1 in the finals.  In Rocket League, Rio Rancho had to come from behind in overtime to defeat crosstown rivals Cleveland Storm.  (The Cleveland team's determination and focus are shown in the NMAA photo below.)  The Los Alamos Hilltoppers took the title in the third sanctioned game, Smite.

The Cleveland Storm battles Rio Rancho in the esports Rocket League finals (photo courtesy NMAA)The Rams dominated the overall championships, ending the season with 50 points, 11 ahead of runners-up Los Alamos.  Sandia Prep finished third, with Cleveland coming fourth among the 29 participating teams.  See a list of all participating New Mexico teams and season standings here (.pdf). 

A growing number of states across the country offer students the opportunity to participate in competitive online gaming.  While ESports players are not physically active, they learn many of the other skills –cooperation, teamwork, leadership—that are part of more traditional sports.