E-Sports comes to CHS, growing extracurricular activity across the country

ESports, or electronic sports, is a form of organized competition that uses a variety of video games that people can play individually, professionally, or as a team.  The ‘sport’ has been around since the 1990s, then grew again in 2010, but seemingly exploded during COVID, as this was a way for people to feel less isolated and connect with others while still staying home.

According to investopedia.com, gaming mimics the experience of watching a professional sporting event, except instead of watching a physical event, spectators watch video gamers compete against each other.

ESports is now an extracurricular activity recently added to many high schools, colleges, and universities across the country. And, while the sport of gaming initially grew through its exposure in the form of home video games, as trivia in sports bars/restaurants, and arcades, the ‘sport’s’ success is such that some schools even offer scholarships for their ESports programs.

Furthermore, the National Education Association states that there are currently over 8,600 high schools with an E-Sports team, who play a wide variety of games such as Madden NFL, NBA 2K, Splatoon, Smash Ultimate, and Mario Kart all over the country.

As video games have become increasingly popular across the country, schools recognized that providing an environment for students to make friends and play games as a team was the positive way to go.  The club came to CHS last school year and was sponsored by former math teacher Mr. Deshong and has since been taken over by English teacher Mr. Bodenstein.

“The kids are very much engaged in it and its nice to see the school provide a place for them to do so,” Bodenstein said.

The Falcon ESports team faces off against other schools’ teams in the district, and have just finished regular season gaming.  But, the school’s team is always looking to welcome new members.

According to team captains juniors Shawn Dunn, Micah Crandell , and Aidan Horan, the team enjoyed facing off against other schools and can’t wait to see how well they do in future competitions.