Playing from home: How high school esports are thriving during COVID-19 – CT Post

Playing from home: How high school esports are thriving during COVID-19 – CT Post

There is only one sports team at AITE, the Academy of Information Technology & Engineering in Stamford.

On this team, athletes work together to defend and score goals. They practice multiple times a week to perfect strategy and communication, scrimmaging against themselves to develop efficient ways to move the ball forward.

But instead of cleats and shin guards, these athletes are equipped with headsets and keyboards.

In AITE’s first full regular esports season this fall, the Rams defeated two-time reigning Rocket League state champion Xavier High School 4-1 in the Connecticut state title match.

“It was so exciting,” said Brenda Zanga, the teacher advisor of AITE’s Varsity Rocket League esports team. “I mean, really, putting us on the map in something, because we’re not a sports school, so it’s something to call our own.”

While the pandemic canceled many in-person sports for the 2020-21 school year, esports has not only survived almost unscathed but in some cases thrived, with team rosters and overall interest for the sport at all-time high in its three-year history with the CIAC.

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