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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Ashland University

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Ashland University

The Collegian

AU Call of Duty finds second NACE Starleague championship in 3-1 win

The Eagles complete a perfect, undefeated, 2023 fall season
Retrieved with permission from AU eSports
The graphic displayed by the AU eSports social media’s ahead of the championship match.

Pulling off a win in the NACE Starleague championship is one feat alone, but completing a perfect season on top of that is even more difficult. For the Ashland University Call of Duty (CoD) eSports team, that task was a breeze.

On Wednesday, Dec. 6, the Eagle CoD team took on Talladega College Tornadoes in the championship of the NACE Starleague Varsity Plus season. The Eagles, who entered into the contest with a 7-0 overall record, were looking to complete the first perfect season in history for the program. With so much at stake, the Eagles came out swinging and pulled off a stellar 3-1 win over the Tornadoes.

“It’s been great to watch our varsity plus team come together and have such a successful season,” said eSports Head Coach Alec Mueller. “They’ve had nothing but fun the whole way too. After this success, they are very excited to get the next season started.”

The Eagles started things off slow through the opening match as they took on Tornadoes in the ‘hardpoint’ game mode. After falling behind early, the Eagles attempted to maintain a close knit affair, but the Tornadoes continuously pulled away en route to a 250-154 win.

With a 1-0 series lead in dominating fashion, the Tornadoes were poised to continue to their high-level play.

However, after a team discussion, they were able to rally and entered the second match, the search and destroy game mode, with confidence.

“It’s been awesome to see the passion from the players and their constant desire to improve,” said Mueller. “They’re still hungry for more.”

The Eagles were indeed hungry and passionate to improve as they waltzed into the search and destroy game mode and dominated the opposing team. They pulled off a 6-4 win, tying up the series at one’s.

With the series level at one a piece, the following control game mode match could go either direction. Which ever team pulled off the win would certainly take the edge heading into the fourth match.

The Eagles once again came out swinging with confidence and did not allow much success to the Tornadoes. They were able to sneak away with a 3-1 win, taking a 2-1 lead in the series. That lead would gift the team with much needed momentum heading into the fourth match which could result in the championship being taken home for the Eagles.

In the fourth match, with the season on the line and an undefeated record at stake, the Eagles did not back down from the challenge.

They took an early 100-50 lead, before taking off from there. They would proceed to outscore the opponent, 150-100, through the rest of the match en route to a 250-152 win.

With that, the Eagles would be crowned NACE Starleague Varsity Plus champions.

“The CoD program has been growing in size and skill since it started in 2021,” said Mueller.

In the 2022 fall season, the Eagles were able to take home a championship in the Varsity Plus league and now a newly formed team, did the same in the 2023 campaign.

With the Eagles finding success in multiple facets of the CoD program, Mueller looks to the following spring season in hopes of more achievements and accolades being found.

“For the next season, our varsity plus team will compete in a higher conference within the NACE Starleague to go against more high level schools and programs,” he said. “This will help them continue their growth going forward.”

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