PIKEVILLE – After announcing plans to become the second institution to make Esports a varsity athletics offering last December, the hard work in getting the program off the ground will finally come to fruition as the Bears take on Wichita State in League of Legends at 9 a.m. on Saturday.
Playing as part of the Collegiate Star League, UPIKE will be competing for the first time in its iBUYPOWER Esports Arena, which is also being sponsored by Steelseries, ASUS and DXRACER.
The historic meeting with the Shockers can be viewed on Twitch, with the stream taking place on The Holler Gaming channel.
Only UPIKE’s Division I team will be competing on Saturday as the Division II squad will receive a bye on the first week of competition.
Colleges and universities from all across the county are competing with over 400 teams registered in the CSL.
The Bears’ DI team consists of the following student-athletes: Mark McNeil (top lane), Nicholas Honkanen (AD carry), Cory Smith (support), James Williams (jungle), Jonathan Song (mid lane) and Steven Deaton (jungle). UPIKE is led by head coach Eric VanHoose, along with student assistant Drake Newsome.