DANBURY, Conn. – The ECAC announces its major player awards and achievements for the Spring 2023 season.
Overwatch 2 Player & Rookie of the Season – Kelvin Mizhquiri, Post University
Kel’s tank play led the Post University Overwatch team to a Top 16 finish in the ECAC this season – the program’s best Overwatch placement. With four out of the five starting players also rookies, Kel had his work cut out for him. With a cool head, decisive shot-calling, and help from the OW coach Fr0sty – he was more than up to the task.
VALORANT Player of the Season – Jackeline Barranzuela, Saint Peter’s University
Jacky never ceased to amaze the team with how quickly she applied critiques given during VOD review sessions into her gameplay and has grown quite confident in her skills since the start of the semester. She is a player that all of team has no difficulty playing with and has demonstrated great leadership skills.
VALORANT Rookie of the Season – Vincent Fuentes, Saint Peter’s University
In Vincent’s first season, he never failed to show how dedicated he was to improve his own gameplay and how devoted he was to working with the team. He has shown tremendous leadership skills and is always practicing even when the team has their off-weeks and has proven himself as an important member of the SPU Esports VALORANT team.
Hearthstone Player & Rookie of the Season – Matthew Taylor, College of Staten Island
Matthew Taylor entered the Spring ’23 season a new comer to ECAC competition, but a veteran as the former Esports Director at Long Island University, and had competed in TESPA in some of its earliest seasons. Matthew struggled in the regular season with a 4-4 record, however kept his head in the game and rattled off 5 victories in a row to win the ECAC Championship. CSI Esports is extremely proud of Matthew’s ability to adapt mid-season to the release of new cards, changes in the meta, and balance changes. The sheer effort he put in practicing earned him that championship and is a model student for our program.
Rocket League Player of the Season – Bill Koch, Post University
Keramik was the star striker for Post University’s Orange team this season. Not only was he calm, cool, and collected on defense, but he was also pushing his own comfort zone by investing extra time into learning more mechanical plays to add to his arsenal. By jumping out of his comfort zone, he was immediately able to prove that his practice time was not a waste and, in fact, was a driving force in helping Post Eagles Orange finish Top 16 in ECAC’s Division A for Rocket League.
Rocket League Rookie of the Season – Luis Dominguez, Post University
Lu_Nova19xx is one of three newcomers to the Post Eagles Purple roster and quickly made a name for himself as a very aggressive player. Post Eagles Purple struggled to find a comfortable style in the beginning, but Lu_Nova stepped up and adjusted his playstyle to adapt to his teammates in hopes of finding success. With hard work and a desire to win, Lu_Nova and his teammates were able to find what they were looking for and qualified for ECAC’s Rocket League Division B playoffs.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Player of the Season – Kenshiro Suzuki, Post University
Frequently called upon to be the anchor for the Eagles’ Smash Purple team, Kenshiro seldom disappointed with his patented Bowser play. Great lived up to his name as the ace player for Post helping them to their second podium finish in SSBU in the ECAC.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Rookie of the Season – Rhyne Thorton, Catawba College
Quickly moved to a leadership/captain position in the team due to strong leadership skills and commitment to academic success. Nationally ranked in multiple tournaments and conferences during first year of competition.
Fortnite Player of the Season – Arthur Nagels, Pace University
Art was vital for Pace University Fortnite, his resilience each game day truly showed. He helped his team to the top of the leaderboard each week throughout the season. Art earned the Directors Award for Pace University.
Fortnite Rookie of the Season – Ana Loza, St. Mary’s University
With her duo Totia Alexander, they successfully qualified for the first round of the Spring 2023 playoffs. As a freshman, she’s maintained a high term and cumulative GPA while juggling student-athlete responsibilities, honors program requirements, a small business, and her challenging coursework. She holds a club officer position in the Accounting Club and is an active member of the St. Mary’s University campus community.
FIFA Player of the Season – Bruno Albino, Clarke University
Bruno came into the Spring 2023 season as the defending ECAC FIFA Champion. Throughout the regular season, Bruno finished with a perfect 8-0 record, and headed into the playoffs as the #1 seed. Bruno then made it all the way to the semifinals without dropping an individual game, and in an extremely close series, took the victory in the finals once again to become the back-to-back ECAC FIFA Champion, and making Clarke the 3-peat champions.
FIFA Rookie of the Season – John Azar, Cumberland University
John came into the Spring 2023 season as a first time ever Esports competitor. Throughout the regular season, John finished with a 6-2 record, and headed into the playoffs as the #2 seed. John fought his way through the post-season bracket taking a victory in the quarter and semi-finals to punch his ticket to the ECAC Championship. Going overall 13-3 in his first ever season.
Madden Player of the Season – Nathan Nelson, Cumberland University
In Nathan’s second year of collegiate Esports, he was coming off of an ECAC Championship victory in the Fall. he was able to go 5-3 in the regular season to secure his spot in the playoffs. Once making it to the playoffs, Nelson was able to battle his way through and reach his second Conference Championship in his career Since competing in Spring of 2022.
Madden Rookie of the Season – Christian Ramirez, Post University
Chris continued his quest for the completed Infinity Gauntlet by joining the Madden team this season after spending time on the League of Legends, Valorant, Overwatch, and Smash teams previously for Post. Our jack-of-all-trades player made incredible strides of improvement during the season, frequently analyzing his own replays, discussing gameplans and grinding his mechanics. This resulted in a playoff berth for Chris in his Freshman Madden season.
NBA 2K Player of the Season – CJ DeGennaro, Post University
CJ’s passion and skill in 2k was on full display all season which led to a 7-1 regular season – tying his own record from the previous season and earning him the #2 seed heading into playoffs. In the playoffs he dispatched 3 opponents before facing his rival Mr. Clean from Augustana in the Championship – the only player to defeat him this season and the player that knocked him out of playoffs last Fall. CJ locked in and conquered his demon, sweeping Mr. Clean 3-0 by clutching out every game on the final possession: 53-51, 53-51, and 50-49 to win Post University’s 2nd ever Conference Championship.
NBA 2K Rookie of the Season – Will Weir, Cumberland University
In Will’s first year of collegiate Esports, he was able to go 6-2 in the regular season to secure his spot in the playoffs. Once making it to the playoffs, Weir was able to battle his way through and reach the Conference Championship in his first semester competing.
League of Legends Player of the Season – Edward Daly, Saint Peter’s University
Ed’s first year ability to improve at a rate incomparable to anyone else on the team was astounding. Ed is an independent player and has proven to the team that he has the ability to hold his own, which is not only relieving to the rest of his team but allows for many situations where he carries the team when the team’s initial strategies fail. He is also the most flexible player of all, with an expanding pool of champion and role knowledge in his arsenal, allowing different strategies against different teams.
League of Legends Rookie of the Season – Humberto Belvis, Saint Peter’s University
When Humberto sets his sights on his goal, he does not back down. Such was the case for being the most fearless and dedicated member of the team this season when Humberto set his goal to winning the ECAC’s League of Legends Division C league. During playoffs, Humberto did not let the pressure affect him and stayed focused on his goal to win. He truly is a member of focus, commitment, and sheer will. His attitude towards playoffs will be an example for future Saint Peter’s University Esports members to follow, should they aim to win in their respective leagues.
Halo Infinite Player of the Season – Aaron Lozano, St. Mary’s University
As captain of the St. Mary’s Halo Infinite team Aaron led the team to numerous victories including 3rd place in the Spring 2023 and 2nd place in the Fall 2022 seasons. He’s gone above and beyond as a mentor to the underclassmen on his team, set the example as a servant leader, and excelled in his senior design project while fulfilling all of his student-athlete responsibilities.
Halo Infinite Rookie of the Season – David Kamel, St. Mary’s University
As a freshman, David helped the team earn a 2nd and 3rd place finish in Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 seasons. He’s grown as an individual, a student, an athlete, and a Halo player through his dedication to the team, learning new strategies, and utilizing feedback to make himself the best teammate possible.
Rainbow Six Player of the Season – Kaleb Ames, University of Maine at Augusta
While playing Varsity basketball, as a Sophomore, for his University, Kaleb also stepped up to Captain the R6S team in their first season. With dedication and passion he trained many new students on and off the team on how to get better at R6S. Achieving the USCAA DII All-Academic Team in basketball and a spot on the Deans List, Kaleb is a hard working motivated individual who has a fiery passion to improve his teammates and help his University achieve greatness.
CoD: MW2 Player of the Season – Blake Fraley, Cumberland University
Blake helped Cumberland University secure their first every ECAC Conference Championship. As being the captain of the COD team, he helped lead the team to an undefeated regular season and remained undefeated in post-season play. His Leadership as a player helped the team reach their full potential and take home the victory.
CoD: MW2 Rookie of the Season – Ashton Preston, Cumberland University
Ashton help lead the Cumberland University COD team to their first every ECAC Division B championship in his first semester ever competing in competitive Call of Duty. Going 119-62 over the 4 map span in the conference finals to secure a 4-0 victory. With one Map where he dropped 45.