LOS ANGELES, June 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The duo team from America East’s University of Maryland-Baltimore County (UMBC) defeated Cal State Fullerton of the Big West to become the first champion of the Collegiate Esports Invitational featuring Fortnite presented by Jersey Mike’s Subs today snagging the $5,000 first prize and the lion share of the $10,000 prize pool, as well as Razer products including keyboards, mice and headsets. The teams in the Finals punched their ticket after winning their respective conference tournaments on May 22.
Produced by GCN, Inc. (Gaming Community Network), part of the GameSquare Esports group of companies, is an independent media group dedicated gaming and esports, and Van Wagner, the Collegiate Esports Invitational series, billed as “Where Conference Champions Are Crowned,” is the first major collegiate esports event that brings colleges and universities together across disparate conferences to compete to become a national champion.
The 10 conference tournaments and Championship garnered more than 651,000 live views during which were streamed live on twitch.tv/CollegiateEsportsInv. During the Championship tournament, more than 256,000 unique viewers tuned in. The tournament was also carried by GCN across 85+ gaming and esports centric websites where GCN reaches 65M+ monthly uniques in the U.S.
Drexel University knocked off Santa Clara University to finish in third place.
“It feels incredible winning the Collegiate Esports Invitational and I am very excited for the future tournaments,” said Kiran “VenomFN” Yarlagadda, a senior majoring in computer science at UMBC. “I will use the tournament earnings for tuition next semester and anything that remains I am planning on keeping in a savings account. What separated us as a duo from our competitors was our ability to get eliminations early in the game, in addition to being able to end fights quickly through coordinated fighting.”
“It feels amazing to win any tournament but winning a tournament this big is not an everyday opportunity and I cannot wait to play more of these in the future,” said Arveen “Archher” Zarrabi, a sophomore majoring in bioinformatics at UMBC. “Kiran is a fantastic teammate that always kept it positive, and we put enough practice in that we played together really effectively.”
The following conference champions shared $5,000 in cash prizes:
- America East Conference – University of Maryland, Baltimore County – Team poisoned arrow – Kiran “venomfn” Yarlagadda & Arveen “Archher” Zarrabi
- Big South Conference – Kennesaw State University – Team NA x2Twins – Andrew “AndyB” Barnes & Tyler “tBarnes” Barnes
- Big West Conference – Cal State Fullerton – Team CSUF Fortnite – Javier “Crysmah” Diaz & James “jripsy” Velazquez
- CIAA – Fayetteville State University – Team Faystate Broncos – Jazz “Jazzwan38” Hanson & Darnell “SwoleFN” Walker (also running back for the FSU football team)
- Colonial Athletic Association – Drexel University – Team Drexel Dragons – Fitsum “Fitse” Alebachew, Jackson “FlapJack09” Heiney & Kiry “Kai9” Mompho
- Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference – Fairfield College – Team FUXC – Tim “Timothy” Burschinger & Aidan “Dudewhat” Donovan
- Southland Conference – University of the Incarnate Word – Team Cardinal Gamers – Isaiah “Iagalleg” Gallegos, Thomas “ttsupernova” Hill & Yoshua “Amazingyoshi” Murillo
- Sun Belt Conference – University of Texas-Arlington – Team UTA Fortnite – “Meka” & Jon “Pfluger” Pfluder
- West Coast Conference – Santa Clara University – Team SCU Esports – Justin “MISAMental” Armanino & Chris “DennisTheMenace” Victorino
- Western Athletic Conference – Grand Canyon University – Team Sheeeeeeesh – “mrwhale” & Logan “Flamey” Smith
“Huge congrats goes out to UMBC to be crowned as the Fortnite champion as they had to earn their way to top in a tournament featuring 110 colleges and universities across 10 NCAA Conferences,” said Chris Kindt, Chief Marketing Officer of GCN. “Throughout this tournament, the students put on a terrific show, and we are extremely grateful to Jersey Mike’s Subs and Razer for seeing our vision. In the future, we want to build a collegiate esports landscape that is inclusive and will crown a true national champion.”
This was the first of the Collegiate Esports Invitational series that will continue this fall with two other tournaments. More information on registration will be provided later this summer.
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SOURCE Gaming Community Network