New Jersey’s Stockton University last weekend put itself on the esports map when its team finished second at the first Collegiate Rocket League World Championship Tournament in Dallas.
Sixteen esports teams qualified for the international tournament, and Stockton made it to the finals before losing to Michigan-based Northwood University, according to a Stockton press release. The tournament was part of the DreamHack Gaming Festival, which was held last weekend involving events around the world.
“I’m happy we got second, but then I’m also unhappy we didn’t get first,” Stockton captain Brian Busse said in the press release. “But we did what we came to do.”
How Stockton got to final
The Stockton team beat opened the tournament with a loss to the University of Central Florida before beating Oakland University (Michigan), Berlin Phoenix (Germany), Columbia College (Missouri), and St. Clair College (Canada) to advance to the finals.
“Coming in on Saturday, we were playing from behind, since if we lost again, we would be eliminated,” said Stockton Esports Program Manager Demetrios Roubos. “But we are known for coming from behind. This is putting us on the map. I couldn’t be more proud of our team. They really brought their A game this weekend.”
Stockton won the Eastern College Athletic Conference Hudson Valley Gamer Con and Mid-Atlantic Rocket League online qualifier on its way to competing for the championship in Dallas.
“This is simply incredible,” Stockton President Harvey Kesselman said. “It is exciting for our students to be on the world stage this way.”
After sports betting was launched in New Jersey in 2018, bettors could, subject to regulatory approval, place wagers on approved esports events. Last year, legalization was extended to allow for esports-specific wagering platforms, and the first to be licensed was the Esports Entertainment Group. It soft-launched in February and rolled out full esports betting in April.
Photo courtesy of Stockton University