Four Moose Jaw students to compete in national eSports tournament this month

Cruz Seaborg, Hudson Newsham, Davis Campbell and Jacob Duncan, the quartet gaming enthusiasts, will compete in a national eSports tournament on Saturday, April 20, in an online setting. The competition entails teams of three battling it out in a game of Rocket League, a popular game where rocket-fueled cars engage in a game of soccer.

There are in excess of 21 million gamers in Canada, yet merely a handful, in the thousands, possesses the required skills to battle in top-tier eSports tournaments and attain wealth and fame.

These expert players include the students of Lindale and Sunningdale schools who established an eSports team last year. The entourage consists of over 36 students hailing from both schools. Among these, four talented individuals form the competitive team, competing with elementary and high school students across Saskatchewan and the whole of Canada.

The aforementioned quartet players — Cruz Seaborg, Hudson Newsham, Davis Campbell and Jacob Duncan, will compete in an online national eSports competition on Saturday, April 20. The competition involves teams of three battling it out in a game of Rocket League, where rocket-fuelled cars engage in a game of soccer.

The first match for the team is at 7 a.m. due to the location of the tournament in Eastern Canada. A victory in two games could see them advance to the final bracket. However, losing two matches means an elimination.

Sunningdale’s vice-principal, Durston McKenna, narrates that he encountered the declaration of eSports games from the King George School amidst the pandemic when physical sports activities were halted. He started searching for similar opportunities for his students, considering the budding interest in eSports nationwide. The rise of the game, League of Legends, also intrigued many with its increasing viewership in North America.

Eric Campbell, principal of Lindale, states that extracurricular activities in the club encompasses everything from sewing, chess, basketball and eSports. These activities attract students with diverse interests, also offering them opportunities to communicate with others, exercise leadership, strategize and commit to a goal. 


Some players are highly ranked in world championships, and the Saskatchewan Esports Association (SEA) made its tournaments public to encompass wider participation and propagate the activity, McKenna elaborates.

The SEA held a tournament for younger and older students in December. This was the second tournament for the Lindale-Sunningdale team, but first for others. Walker Newsham, a Grade 8 student at Lindale, also participated.

Newsham does not compete, but works behind the scenes as the team manager, arranging the players. He remains humble despite his achievements, acknowledging that he remains behind the scenes because he is the most tech-savvy student at Lindale who can set up everything.

The future goal is to institute provincial playoffs that allow the top-two provincial teams to compete at the nationals, McKenna adds.

It was unexpected for the Lindale-Sunningdale U-14 team, primarily consisting of grade six students, to reach nationals in merely its second year.

The team practices daily but hasn’t been able to maintain regularity due to recent job action. However, they are hoping to resume practice from home because of the online nature of the game, and a two-week rigorous practice session post-Easter break is also planned in preparation for the nationals.

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