Gretna Goons, Grab the Gold

Esports Overwatch 2 Team to Compete Nationally


Onnika Moore

The image above portrays the team’s mains for the competition in Texas.

Bloodshot eyes stare at the bright, colorful screen as an opposing team keeps crashing in and out of the game. The clock ticks down as both teams are tied 2-2 and hands cramp after scrolling and hitting keys to tie down the win. If the defense or offense barely wavers, the esports team loses the chance at the national grand finals. Thankfully, the team pulls through behind Rockford’s noses and wins the last point before the timer runs out, ending the game with a score of 3-2 earlier this month.
“We’ve been dominating until Rockford in our semi-finals match,” junior player Brooks Omel said. “They were way above any team we faced until then, and it was exciting to be challenged again.”
“Overwatch 2” is a vibrant first-person shooter where five-player teams compete online. Well-balanced teams consist of tanks (characters who take and give the majority of the damage), then DPS (strong fighters who deal damage but cannot take any) and support characters who heal and buff their teammates to help the team.
Every member of the GHS varsity esports team serves their role to dominate the high school esports scene. Of course, these talents are not natural, but practiced and earned with continuous time and effort. Juniors Brooks Omel, Kaylee Taylor, Sam Green, Corey Chatham, Ian Cowan and Nicholas Coates all practice at least once or twice a week to help each other polish their skills. Along with pure ability, the group has to communicate and coordinate plays to prevail against their opponents.
“We’ve learned what team characters they (Chicago Deerfield Warriors) like to play the most, so we’ve been doing scrimmages to fight against it and better face them,” junior Kaylee Taylor said. “I’m excited to go to nationals since I’ve been involved with the Overwatch team for three years, so it’s an exciting moment.”
Thus closing the semi-finals victoriously; their last challenge is the championship in Arlington, Texas. The Future Gaming Stars Grand Finals start on April 29 at 5 p.m. at the Esports Arena. All of the Gretna Goons have mixed feelings about challenging the country, yet all are delighted to work together and have fun. They and their sponsor Ms. Kimberly Ingraham-Beck will be flying to Texas to compete in person.
“I’m nervous to play there because I’ve never played in front of an in-person crowd, but no matter what the outcome is, I’m sure we will all be proud of ourselves,” junior Sam Green said.
Most have known each other since they joined the club, and others have got along with these people for years.
“We’ve bonded so much over this past year; they are really like brothers to me,” Omel said. “Well, and a sister. I can’t wait for the next year to continue the Gretna dynasty because we all have one more year until it’s over. After we win nationals this year, we’ll continue our reign until we’re all off and graduated, and we’re just getting started.”