The Personalities of Copper Hills eSports

Joe McKasson

When it comes to high-level competition, the Copper Hills eSports teams take things seriously. Tryouts are a gauntlet that tests the skill of every player, and games throughout the season don’t get any easier. It takes a specific type of player to compete with other schools, and their individual personalities contribute to what and how they play. 


eSports is an activity that consists of playing video games at a highly competitive level. Copper Hills eSports is an after-school organization that competes against other schools across the country. The eSports group at Copper Hills consists of one or two teams for each of five video games: League of Legends, Overwatch, Valorant, Rocket League, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The Head Coach for eSports is Mr. Childers, a CHHS Science teacher, Mr. Hatch, a Counselor at Copper Hills, is the Assistant Coach, and Ms. Hendrickson, who also teaches Science, coaches Valorant. There are two seasons per school year, one in the Fall and one in the Spring. Schools compete against one another, gaining points for wins, and the teams with the most points (the number of teams varies with each game) compete at Playoffs, until the champion is decided in Finals. 


The eSports teams at Copper Hills consist of a diverse range of people, all with colorful personalities that factor into their gameplay. Mr. Childers said that he can see the differences in the types of players from “game to game. They all have their own niches and quirks.” While CHHS players have competitive video games in common, they all stick out individually. 

Alex Thompson


When asked how they got into the game that they play, players of Overwatch, Rocket League, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate generally have more casual introductions to their game. Brayden Owen, a member of the Smash Varsity team, said that he got Super Smash Bros. Brawl (The third entry in the Super Smash Bros. Series) on the Wii, and “when the Switch came out, we got Ultimate, and now I’m obsessed.” Lucas Milner, the captain of Smash Ultimate Varsity, said, “I played [Super Smash Bros.] at my friends’ house on the Wii for the first time, and a couple of years later, I started really getting into it.” With the huge accessibility and success of the Nintendo Wii, it’s no wonder the Smash Ultimate players started out playing Brawl. Trevor Gunn, a player for Overwatch Varsity, said that he saw the Overwatch World Cup Finale on Disney XD in middle school, and “I said, ‘This is going to be my game, it’s exactly what I want out of a video game.” Andrew McKasson, who currently plays on the JV Rocket League team, said, “I started with my family playing together, just having fun casually, and eventually I found [some friends of mine] and we all started playing together, and after I got a PC it just went from there.” These three games have in common an element of accessibility and wide appeal, which led these players to pick them up casually, and become more competitive over time. 


When it comes to Valorant and League of Legends, however, Copper Hills’ players started in more technical, competitive ways. Parker Bauman, a player for League of Legends Varsity, said, “I signed up for League along with Smash Bros. When I didn’t get into Smash, I had an opportunity to join as a substitute for League.” Benji Jaffa, a member of Valorant Varsity, stated: “I found [Valorant] around when they first announced it, during its beta stages, and then I ended up watching streams to get the [Beta Key], so I got to play during Beta.” Contrasting the easygoing beginnings for most players, members of the League of Legends and Valorant teams were in it to win from the very start. 

Alex Thompson

In the heavily competitive environment of eSports, a player’s mindset will change drastically. It’s a flame that many are drawn to, and many fall out from. What keeps competitors in it for the long haul? Both Milner and Owen stated that they enjoy the competitive aspects of eSports, with Milner stating: “I want to show my stuff; show up those other schools.” Super Smash Bros. has a very stark juxtaposition in that it’s marketed as a party game for a younger audience, but is enjoyed by its playerbase as a tough-as-nails vessel for competition. Gunn also shared his affinity for competition: “I like the part of a game where you can just prove that you are better than everyone, and especially when the [results] show that.” Overwatch and Smash Ultimate at Copper Hills both harbor fiery players who are in it to dominate the competition and prove that they’re the best. 


When asked what draws him into Valorant, Jaffa shared: “Honestly, it’s the team aspect. I enjoy having a team and being able to work with them.” Valorant is a game that heavily relies on communication, strategizing, and precise execution between players, and exemplifies not only high level play, but a collaborative element of gaming. League of Legends is another game based on communication and strategy. However, rather than focusing on the team aspect, Bauman shared: “What draws me in is actually the quality and fun of the game itself.” Rocket League is perhaps the game that most heavily relies on a tight-knit team, with inputs and execution depending on the second-to-second actions of your teammates; which explains McKassons’ take: “Most of the people on the Rocket League team were already my friends to begin with, and I get to play with them, which is really fun, and I also have a competitive spirit. I love winning and playing competitively.” 


From the release of Super Smash Bros. in 1999, to the 2022 release of Overwatch 2, eSports, like the people who play them, have grown and developed over time; Copper Hills demonstrates no exception to that rule. The fiery, competitive environment of eSports harbors a unique community of players who fit the bill perfectly.