Teamwork the secret ingredient to success for Esports championship

MSU Texas Esports

Teamwork the secret ingredient to success for Esports championship

MSU Texas Esports won a championship in Spring 2023 as the JV Super Smash Bros. team won a league championship against other college teams.

The JV Smash team lost only once, compiling a 7-1 record in league play. It’s the first championship team for the young program. 

Captain Jarrette Greene was joined by Nathan Ampil, Ajani Freeman, and Brayden Lawson on the team. “I was the captain, but it felt like we were all leaders and took responsibility for the team,” Greene said. “It was a great experience to win the championship with my friends.”

Ampil said it was an enjoyable experience to join MSU Texas Esports. “It’s my hobby, but also something where I can enjoy competing with my friends,” he said. “It was fun to compete against other schools.”

The varsity team receives scholarships, while the junior varsity team is more recreational. They both share the MSU Texas Esports lounge in Legacy Hall. Freeman and his teammates also enjoyed practice battles with the varsity team with a chance to sharpen skills and good-natured trash talk.

Playing league matches against different opponents each week is different than going to weekend tournaments, the group said. And it was a challenge, strategically, to adapt to an unfamiliar foe.

“It’s very difficult to maintain consistency because you don’t know what your opponents are going to do,” Lawson said. “You have to adapt quickly, and you know with one mistake, you can lose. I would say we all improved this season. It was a great experience!”

The team found many benefits from competing together, including new friendships that came with finding other college students with the same interests. It gave them an outlet for competition and a break from the routine. They hope to see the program grow in the coming years. And they’d enjoy bringing home more victories, too.

“I think it was so awesome to see these students come together as a roster,” said Zachary Zoet, the Esports & Gaming Coordinator at MSU Texas. “They worked very hard to figure out ways to leverage individual player strengths. And they also learned to develop a smart roster that covered each other’s weaknesses. That was our secret sauce for taking home this championship for MSU!”

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Smash Bros. Champs

In the top photo, Ajani Freeman, Brayden Lawson, Jarrette Greene, and Nathan Ampil discuss the keys to their championship at the MSU Texas Esports lounge.