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The Student Voice of UNC Asheville

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The Student Voice of UNC Asheville

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Esports coaches leading the way with strategy and commitment

Whether it’s traditional sports like soccer and basketball or esports, the effectiveness of the team rests on the backs of the coaches.

“The team was very new to playing the game competitively, so we started playing very slow and carefully,” said ex-Overwatch pro Sebastian Moreno, who qualified for the Overwatch World Cup in 2019 and coaches the Overwatch team at UNC Asheville.

As a friend of UNCA’s assistant director of campus recreation, esports and sports Nicholas Braylan, Sebastian has years of experience under his belt. 

“Now, we’re beating higher ranked teams more often than not, and they’re only getting better. The rate they’ve improved is astounding,” Sebastian said. 

It isn’t just Overwatch that’s seen leaps and bounds in their skill; The Rocket League team has been seeing steady improvements despite issues with scheduling. 

Matias Waisman, a True Neutral academy coach who also coaches professionally for Blazar GG which is currently competing in the RLCS in the South America Regional expressed their enjoyment in coaching for UNCA. With years of experience, they’ve been a major asset to the team. 

“I was an avid Rocket League player around 6 years ago, and once I started university I saw I had more time to play and keep up my skills,” said Matias. “I thought it would be a fun change to shift my career path to coaching.” 

With the National Association of Collegiate Esports having announced open competition for Rocket League back in 2019, the open division allowed players to sign up for free without being part of a NACE member school. 

This semester will see both the Super Smash Bros and Overwatch teams playing in the NACE Open, 

“They (UNCA) qualified for the NACE tournament, and they have also shown excitement in participating in the Big South tournament alongside the League of Legends team,” Matias said. 

Virtual coaching is a unique facet of modern life, and while it has been incredibly successful, both Matias and Sebastian have expressed a desire to visit UNC Asheville in person, both to meet and coach the players face to face. 

“Sometimes I would like to be there in person instead of several countries away, since I would be able to encourage them better,” Sebastian said. “Being present would be a significant change, but one that would have a positive impact on the team.”

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