The Newest Sport At Farrell

Written on 04/16/2020
Antonio Giannattasio


Esports Comes to Farrell                                                                                                                                            

The newest addition to Monsignor Farrell’s ever-growing list of extracurricular activities is our Esports Competitive gaming team. This new activity is coached by Mr. Weir, and the games available to play competitively are popular multiplayer titles such as Overwatch, Rocket League, Super Smash Bros, and Fortnite.

Farrell became Staten Island's first Catholic School to offer competitive gaming this past winter and is currently competing in the Spring Major of the High School Esports League (HSEL).

 One of the founding members Nicholas Giuseffi '20 explained his reasons as to why he felt our school should start an Esports club:



"I have always been a fan of video games, especially on the competitive level. Competitive gaming and Esports, in general, continues to grow in popularity. I recently discovered the opportunity for scholarships that are granted to high school students and wanted to give that same opportunity to the students at Monsignor Farrell. I’m looking forward to the season ahead and glad to be able to start something new and exciting for Farrell students."



So far there are two teams for Overwatch competitions; the A-Team led by Nicholas and the B-Team led by Andrew Scibelli '20.  Andrew had to say this about the foundation of the team:



“Having such a great opportunity to do something I personally enjoy on an official level is such an amazing experience.”



Scholarships are also available when it comes to the official competitions. For the champions of each game, a $500 or $1000 scholarship is awarded to each member of the team depending on the tournament. For these tournaments, Farrell will not only compete with local schools, but we will also compete against schools nationwide.  Ryan Taylor '20 of the B-Team, shared his thoughts on the nationwide competition:



“I think it’s great, it can really open your eyes to how big this community really is and it's incredible to get to test your skills against someone across the country.” 




The HSEL spring season began on March 30 and runs through May 24, with students competing in popular video games like Fortnite, Overwatch, Rocket League, Super Smash Brothers Ultimate, NBA 2K20, and more to win scholarship prizes up to $1,000 per player.

Several Farrell students excelled during the HSEL winter season, with sophomore Lenny Kinsman placing first in a nationwide Fortnite tournament, freshman Mark Allard placing third in that same tournament, and senior Nicholas Giuseffi receiving a $5,000 per-year scholarship from Wagner College to participate in their Esports program.



 “It is not just a fun activity for me, but something I will be taking with me as I start the next chapter of my life at Wagner College this coming fall.”  - Nicholas Giuseffi 




In addition to being an enjoyable activity and allowing students to stay connected, Esports and competitive gaming offer much more.  

Participating in competitive, team-based gaming presents various benefits to students and has been proven to develop essential real-world skills -- like communicating, strategizing, and problem-solving.
 
Mr. DeMartino, head of Farrell's STEM program, had this to say:

“The design and playing of video games incorporate essential STEM skills, such as strategic thinking, interpretive analysis and plan formulation, and execution. These traits are the hallmark of successful individuals in the STEM fields."


 


Please contact Mr. Weir for more information on the Esports / competitive gaming team.