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ISA LAUNCHES ESPORTS LEAGUE

ISA launches ESPORTS League amidst 4th quarter cancellation.

PRESS RELEASE – The Guam Department of Education (GDOE) is proud to announce that it will launch an esports league for high schools next month. Esports has been touted as the fastest growing sport in the nation. The Interscholastic Sports Association (ISA) Esports League was created due to the cancellation of regular ISA sports due to COVID-19. 

Following several meetings with high school athletic directors and coaches, the ISA Board of Directors voted to utilize Super Smash Bros as the method of competition for the esports league. Varsity Electronic Sports Organization owner Tegan Brown will be guiding the competition.

“We are excited to kick off this pilot program that will offer competition for our students who are looking for avenues to connect in a fun and safe way through gaming and technology,” GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said. 

“We are expecting to learn along the way – especially considering that we are launching this league at a distance.  But with Mr. Brown’s expertise, I am confident that we will be starting off on the right foot,” ISA Acting Sports Program Coordinator Al Garrido said.

Latte Esports League founder Ken San Nicolas will also serve as an ISA esports advisor.  San Nicolas is a local expert who has run multiple esports competitions for all ages. Brown and San Nicolas agree that Super Smash Bros is the most viable platform to launch with because of its engagement and popularity among students.  

Super Smash Bros is a crossover game that features characters from Nintendo franchises such as Pokémon, Super Mario and Donkey Kong. The pilot program will pit teams against each other in a meet format through three weeks of heated competition. Playoffs are slated to start in the final week of May. Students are encouraged to contact coaches by May 3, 2020 to confirm participation. 

IMPORTANT DATES
April 29-May 3Player registration period. Students must connect with their school coaches if they are interested AND have the capacity to participate. Waiver forms must be completed.
May 4; 2 p.m.Players/Coaches ZOOM Meeting
May 6; 6 p.m.First High School Esports Meet
CONTACT INFORMATION
George Washington High SchoolCoach Whatley – acwhatley@gdoe.net
Okkodo High SchoolCoach Camaya – jmcamaya@gdoe.net; Coach Felisan – smfelisan@gdoe.net; Coach Manibusan – jjmanibusan@gdoe.net
Simon Sanchez High SchoolCoach Cortez – edcortez@gdoe.net; Coach Pacheco – jgpacheco@gdoe.net
Tiyan High SchoolCoach Labrador – rplabrador@gdoe.net
Southern High SchoolCoach Diego – judiego@gdoe.net; Coach Flores – wtflores@gdoe.net

Due to the limited number of confirmed participants from John F. Kennedy High School and J.P. Torres Success Academy, students from both JFKHS and JPTSA may participate by affiliating with teams from other schools. 

“The growth of esports in the mainland has been phenomenal. There are many high school leagues in the U.S. and countless scholarships are being offered at the collegiate level,” Fernandez said.  “We are hopeful that students will participate in the ISA Esports League and that we can grow this program to include other sports and games in the future.” 

For more information on the esports league, please contact ISA Acting Sports Program Coordinator Al Garrido at algarrido@gdoe.net.

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Since forming the GNYFF in 2009, the league has never gone without a season until 2020. The league announced their plans to cancel the 2020 season amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

COMING SOON …

ALL SPORTING EVENTS HALTED DUE TO THE CORONAVIRUS ISSUE

QUICK HITS

RIP: Former Guam football player Phil Mendiola, shown here with son Tano, passed away in Las Vegas due to a heart attack. Mendiola played for numerous Guam teams from youth to varsity. He was 39.
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Morgan McKenna (left with black face mask) poses for a photo with Guam Football Association Technical Director Sang Hoon Kim (seated, with blue face mask) and Guam Football Association Assistant Technical Director Ross Awa (standing) after signing his letter of commitment to play intercollegiate men’s soccer for Muskingum University in Ohio. The Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference.

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