Windham High School added an Esports team to its fall group of varsity teams in 2021. Esports is short for electronic sports and is a form of competitive video gaming. In the final game of the regular season, Windham played Weston High School of Connecticut and defeated them 2-0 on Tuesday, Nov. 14.
|Windham varsity Esports senior Lynn Roberts watches|
teammate Justin Chavez, a junior, as he plays 'League of
Legends' during an Esports match on Tuesday, Nov. 14
at Windham High School.
PHOTO BY MATT PASCARELLA
Windham’s Esports team plays a multiplayer game called “League of Legends,” where two teams on either side of a playing field clash in the middle and battle it out with the goal being to destroy the opposing team’s base. Matches are best two out of three games. There is also a physical aspect where the team spends time in the weight room.
“I’ve always liked video games,” said Windham senior Aidan Poitras. “I feel like it’s important [to have Esports at Windham] because most are introverted ... and it’s really nice to get out and do this, especially with gamer friends. I think it’s healthy.”
Esports teaches strategy, teamwork, communication, and problem solving. Windham’s team communicated extremely well through both matches and that is one of the key factors that helped them earn both wins. They also practice together like other varsity teams.
“Those that may not want to play a physical sport, [Esports] allows them the opportunity to still get some hand-eye coordination and it’s important to offer different types of sports,” said Windham varsity Esports coach Michelle Lane. “It’s also a collegiate sport and they can take it to the next level. They are talking continuously, asking for help, or letting each other know where they’re at or what objective they’re going after and who needs to be there.”
Since Windham had a couple losses earlier in the season, they readjusted the roles of some of the players and they seem to have found the perfect fit as “League of Legends” has many facets with many characters to learn.
In the first match, Windham picked the stronger characters which overpowered their opponent. Windham had good team dynamics and communication is very important when it comes to wins and losses in Esports.
Windham senior Alex Pooler said Esports is underrepresented. He said that there are a lot of people who can’t play sports but can play Esports. Esports helps to offer clearer communication. It’s really dependent upon teamwork because in most cases you can’t win alone.
The team has gotten much better as the season has progressed. This year was more game-focused and thinking about how the game will play out before the game starts. Everyone needs to be on board with the ideas and strategies planned before beginning a match.
“Both matches were very late-game focused,” said Pooler. “The farther we got into the game, the stronger both teams got. Both matches we were talking a lot. Before the match started, we had a good idea of what we were planning; we picked our characters well so we could win.” <