E-Swarm Report: First games of the ECAC playoffs bring mixed results

Sweeping victories for NECC Matches


Colby Case

Each week, The State Hornet will recap all the action from Sac State’s esports games.

Colby Case

League of Legends 

MetaShift League

The MetaShift League is a new seasonal tournament with its own prize support of $500 for first place, $300 for second and $50 for third and fourth. Each team is put into a bracket based off of their highest ranking player.

The Sac State Gold team (1-3) played and lost against the team Nine Tailed Fox Venom (4-0) on April 3. During the first game, skirmishing between lanes kept the teams close to each other, however some unfavorable engagements from Sac State let NTFV pull ahead. This was compounded by Gold players getting caught out at inopportune moments. 

NTFV won the first game at 31 minutes 30 seconds, with a 14k gold lead and 29 kills to Gold’s 12.

The second game saw NTFV playing aggressively, making a couple poor engagements and0 securing kills for the Gold team. NTFV, however, flipped the script, roaming only as a group and forcing bad team fights upon Sac State. This snowballed NTFV’s Hecarim to nine of the team’s 10 kills. NTFV takes great advantage of this, securing objectives and taking the victory at 33 minutes, 8k gold lead and 28-11 kills.

The Sac State Gold team’s next game will be April 11 against the Tuxedo Birds (1-2).


Eastern College Athletic Conference

The Hornets got a bye for their first game of the playoffs April 6, and their other match of the day ended in a forfeit by their opponents, Muskingum University. The Hornets’ next game, and technically their first of the playoffs, will be the quarterfinals April 13 at 5 p.m.

New England Collegiate Conference

The Sac State Valorant Green team (5-4) won against University of British Columbia Okanagan (2-7) in a close 2-0 sweep. The first game on the map Split, the Green team took a small lead and sustained it, though not without its losses, eventually overwhelming the enemies’ attacks through flanking maneuvers and catching the opponents unaware to win 13-10.

The second game on the map Icebox went down to the wire, with both teams staying really close to each other’s scores, staying even until the last rounds. The Green team planting the spike forced UBC out of their defensive position right into the waiting sights of Green’s guns. Green narrowly won the game 15-13 and the set 2-0.

The Gold team (5-4) won a 2-0 sweep against University of Alabama in Huntsville (2-7) March 7. Sac State Gold won the first game on the map Bind 13-6 through effective aiming and a site defense which relied on scouting the enemies’ position early and reacting quickly with a counter push.

Their second game on the map Icebox, similarly to the Green team, went into overtime. Good positioning and communication caught them up while they were behind early, catching them Gold up and putting them into overtime. The final couple rounds were decided through ability usage forcing poor rotations from Huntsville. Gold won the second game, 14-12, and the set 2-0.

“On bind we had certain strats that we had to counter their pushes and held our corners right and played as a team,” said Ryan “Oni” Yokoi over Discord. “But with icebox going into it we were winning a little more off of aim battles since we weren’t too familiar with our tactics on that map.”

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Harish “OMI” Kandaswamy takes revenge for his fallen teammate and gets a flick pistol kill to win the round against University of Alabama in Huntsville__ on Wednesday, April 7. Winning rounds in the early game secures your economy so you don’t bankrupt later when it’s more important.Video courtesy of Harish “OMI” Kandaswamy.

Rocket League

The Sac State Rocket League team played its first two games of the playoffs April 7, the first against Dallas Baptist University followed by a matchup against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Sac State won the first game against DBU, 3-1. They won the first round by one goal and DBU followed suit in the second round. The third, however, Sac State scored a whopping six goals to one. The final round was won 3-2.

“We really just locked in and kept the ball close when we noticed they were being passive,” said Nick “SauceProphet” Heigelmann over Discord.

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Despite the verticality and complex maneuvers one has to perform Wesley “ShamWes” Ghilarducci sets up the ball for Johny “lolsmileyfce” Garcia in the third round of the match against Dallas BAptist University on Wednesday, April 7. That round Sac State scored six goals to DBU’s one, a major difference.Video courtesy of the Sac State Esports Club.

RPI swept Sac State during the second game 3-0. The goal counts weren’t extreme one way or another however, meaning the rounds were fairly close. In the first round RPI scored 2-0 followed by a 2-1 and then a 3-1, winning the best of five set.

“Well, we didn’t know we had 2 games,” said Heigelmann over Discord. “One of our players was gone after the first, and our backup wasn’t really prepared to step in so we got clapped.”

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

The Sac State Green team got a bye for its first game of the ECAC playoffs and on the same day, April 5, played Johnson and Wales University for their second game. The Green team won its game against J&W, 2-0.

The first game saw Green winning an early victory thanks to Dominik “sora” Ortiz’s R.O.B. Making a large dent in the opponent’s stocks through ranged attacks and then launching the opponents when they got close. Aaron “ArgonGames” George finished the game off as Captain Falcon.

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Dominik “sora” Ortiz’s R.O.B. plays a precarious game at 141% damage against Johnson and Wales University’s Yoshi on Monday, April 5. Ortiz leads the next game, doing similar damage and forcing the opponents to play from behind. Video courtesy of Aaron “ArgonGames” George.

“I knew the matchup so I was able to adapt to players easier,” said Dominik “sora” Ortiz over Discord. “Making the other person play around my gyro item and play a lot of pressure on the other player.”

The second game started with Ortiz not leading as effectively as the first game, but he still paved the way for George and then eventually Jahque “JJStatic” Wilson as Snake, winning the game and set. 

The Gold team played and lost against the New York Tech Cybears in a 2-0 sweep for their first game of the season. The teams started off evenly in the first game, trading stocks until Gold pulled ahead getting to the last opponent, Snake, with 5 of their 9 stocks left. Snake then put the Cybears on his back and carried them to victory.

Through use of spacing techniques to keep the Gold team members at arm’s length and projectile saturation to keep potential for damage high as possible, he tore through Gold’s remaining stocks. The second game happened much the same, Gold trading their way through the first two opponents, Terry and Mythra/Pyra, only to get stonewalled by the final opponent playing Snake.

Green and Gold’s next game will be April 12. If they advance to quarter-finals those games will be on the same day.

Correction: April 9, 2021 7:47 p.m.

A previous version of this story incorrectly listed the Smash Ultimate Green team as the Gold team and vice versa. The story has been updated to correct this error.