An exciting night of Blinn College esports action saw the Buccaneers compete in matches in Super Smash Bros, Overwatch, and Call of Duty play.

The night of action began with an NJCAA Esports (NJCAAe) Call of Duty bout between Blinn and Trinity Valley Community College. The match was contested live in front of a packed house at the Blinn Esports Arena located inside the Mill Creek Residence Hall on the Blinn-Brenham campus. A packed house of fans was in attendance as the Buccaneers put forth a valiant effort in a tough 3-1 loss to the Cardinals.

Competing for Blinn were Logan RiveraMichael AllenIsaias Nieto, and Raylon Jenkins.

“It was one of the closest matches we’ve ever had,” said Bucs assistant coach and Call of Duty manager Ryan Lucich. “Every respawn mode was neck-and-neck, and Trinity Valley was just barely able to edge us out in the closing seconds. Overall, it was a great experience for our guys. They had a lot of fun and I think learned a lot about playing in that type of environment. We’d also like to thank everyone who came out and supported us. It was truly an experience that we will never forget.”

Blinn Call of Duty takes on Full Sail University in a Collegiate Call of Duty League Division II Southeast match at 7 p.m. on Monday, March 4, and will also battle Brookedale Community College in an NJCAAe bout following the conclusion of that match.

Blinn later competed in eight one-versus-one NJCAAe Super Smash Bros Ultimate matches and finished play with a 7-1 mark.

Gape Pipes earned a 3-1 victory over State Technical College of Missouri and topped Mineral Area College 3-0. Tanner Hicks split a pair of tilts with a 3-0 sweep of Southwestern Illinois College and a 3-0 setback at the hands of Iowa Central Community College. Brady Landry knocked off Laredo College in a close 3-2 decision before defeating Coastal Bend College 3-1. Cody Bentalage completed the team’s inspiring performance with a 3-2 win over Coastal Bend and a 3-0 sweep of Dallas College-Richland.

“This standout performance marks our best week yet, and showcases the team’s relentless practice and dedication,” Blinn assistant coach and Super Smash Bros manager Kyle Murto. “As we reflect on our accomplishments, we are going to continue to push on and improve. While we did great tonight, we still have work to put in if we want to make some deep playoff runs this year. We are going to look at carrying this momentum as we continue forward.”

Blinn Super Smash Bros returns to action with seven matches on Tuesday, March 5. The Bucs will take on Dawson Community College, Bismarck State College, Dallas College-Richland, Barton Community College, Southeast Community College, and State Technical College of Missouri. Bentlage and Landry will also battle each other in a conference tilt.

Esports Fans 2023-24
(Pictured: Fans in attendance watch the Call of Duty match between Blinn and Trinity Valley on Feb. 27, 2024)

The Blinn Overwatch team was also in action Tuesday and fell to the University of Texas-Dallas 3-0 in a National Association of College Esports (NACE) Super Conference match.

Competing for the Bucs were Haluk TanrisevenDonnivan StraightDhruv PandrangiJaden Cornett, and Matthew Hutchings.

“Throughout the match, our team exhibited sporadic moments of brilliance, showcasing glimpses of our potential,” said Murto, who also coaches the Overwatch squad. “However, these flashes were overshadowed by our overall performance, which was very lackluster to say the least. In the past week, we have encountered difficulties while struggling to maintain the level of consistency and cohesion that has defined our play this semester. While we acknowledge the setbacks we’ve faced, we remain committed to regrouping and getting back on track.”

Blinn Overwatch resumes play with an NJCAAe tilt against Dallas College-Richland at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 28. The Bucs will also continue its run in the University of Kentucky Overwatch Invitational Qualifier with a match a 7 p.m. tilt, also Wednesday. Blinn’s opponent has yet to be announced.

Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 45 NJCAA national championships since 1987.

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