On Saturday, April 24, esport phenom Dylan Lewis ’22 participated in Shenandoah University’s first appearance in an esports national championship. He was competing in the Madden Playstation finals against a familiar opponent from Boise State.
“Dylan has come a long way from the beginning of the season when he dropped a series to this guy,” said student Will Jenkins. “This is the best chance to take back what should have been ours the first time, but with higher stakes and greater rewards.”
As the matches got underway, the esports arena had fans ecstatic for the upcoming event. The first game consisted of Lewis scoring 17 points on his opponent, while holding the other player to just 10 points, taking the first game in a best-of-three series. At this point, the fans were roaring with excitement, only one match away from claiming Shenandoah’s first national championship in esports.
Entering the fourth quarter of game two, Lewis had a rough start, creating a 14-point deficit for himself. Many fans had already prepared for a game three, as this five-minute quarter didn’t appear to be enough time for a comeback. However, Lewis had other plans.
Lewis capitalized on a quick interception by driving down the field and scoring with three minutes left on the game clock, followed by another three-and-out by his opponent. Fighting down the field with a limited game clock, Lewis scored a last-second touchdown to put the score at 20-21 with four seconds left and a chance to tie the game for overtime. Many fans were yelling to kick the field goal to tie the game, while others were influencing Lewis to go for the 2-point conversion to win the championship. Lewis attempted to go for the win, but got stopped on the goal line, leading to a loss to tie the series 1-1.
Whoever won the next game would be named the national champion.
Game three was extremely intense for both players. The game was tied 10-10 at the half. His opponent kicked a field goal in the fourth quarter for the lead, which was quickly answered by a touchdown by Lewis, giving him the 17-13 lead late in the game. Boise State was charging down the field for what looked like the last possession of the game, using all of their timeouts to stop the clock. With seven seconds left, Boise State intentionally ran offsides for a flag, however this stopped the clock.
“That should be a 10-second runoff,” shouted Lewis. “That should be the game!”
In the end, Madden doesn’t have the same rules that the regular NFL has, leading Lewis to get scored on during the next play, losing the championship 20-17 in game three, with a final 2-1 series score line.
“He’s heartbroken,” said student Colin Tracy. “I know he’s going to be grinding the game this offseason harder than he ever has before to reclaim the title that was stolen from him.”
Categories: Campus News