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CVCC E-sports playoff qualifiers
Front row, from left, Anna Whitworth, Bailey Patterson, Ben Campbell, Brett Oldham, Christian Brown and Colin Robinson. Second row, from left, Cristian Baquiax, Devante Moore, Donavon Ervin, Emily Mametz, Evan Petty, Hector Santamaria and Jacob Simko. Back row, from left, Juan David Morales, Luis Cruz, Nistelrooy Ordonez, Aiden Stevens, Omar Rueda-Vazquez, Josh Simko, Sky Lee and Cody Leonard.
graphic courtesy of Catawba Valley Community College Athletics

CVCC E-Sports To Send 20 to Playoffs

A program-record 20 members of the Catawba Valley Community College esports program have qualified for the National Junior College Athletic Association Esports (NJCAAE) playoffs.

This brings the total number of Red Hawks qualifying for the NJCAAE playoffs to 38 during the 2022-23 school year.

The Red Hawks hope to exceed their fall 2022 postseason performance, which included a program-record 11 playoffs wins and three top-eight finishes, including a national runner up in VALORANT.

“We are excited to cap off what has been an outstanding school year for our Red Hawk Esports program by competing in the NJCAA spring playoffs,” said Red Hawk Esports head coach Cody Dalton. “All of our Red Hawk student athletes have dedicated their time not only in competition, but also in the classroom, as they prepare to make a run at our program’s first national championship.”

The Red Hawk Call of Duty 4v4 team (6-1), which is comprised of members Hector Santamaria, Donavon Ervin, Devante Moore, Cody Leonard and Colin Robinson, make their second-straight playoff appearance. They will be the first Red Hawks to compete in the NJCAAE Open spring playoffs on Monday, April 10 at 5:30 p.m. against USC Sumter.

Santamaria and teammate Juan David Morales are also chasing a championship in the NJCAAE Open in Call of Duty Warzone duos. After finishing a perfect 7-0 in the regular season, Santamaria and Morales start their chase for a national championship on Thursday, April. 13 at 7 p.m.

Twelve Red Hawks qualified for the NJCAAE postseason in the video game VALORANT. This is also the second-straight season that the Red Hawks have two VALORANT teams qualified for the NJCAAE postseason.

RH Red VALORANT (6-1), which is comprised of team members Bailey Patterson, Sky Lee, Cristian Baquiax, Omar Rueda-Vazquez and Evan Petty, earned a first-round bye in the NJCAAE Open playoffs. They will compete in the second round of competition against Navarro on Sunday at 2 p.m.

RH Black VALORANT (4-4) qualified for the NJCAAE Intramural playoffs for the first time in program history. RH Black team members include Aiden Stevens, Anna Whitworth, Jacob Simko, Brett Oldham, Ben Campbell, Emily Mametz and Luis Cruz. Their first-round playoff match up will take place Friday, April 14 against Heartland Community College.

Nistelrooy Ordonez (6-1) qualified for the NJCAAE FIFA Open playoffs for the second-straight semester. He will try to better his final four finish in the fall starting with first-round action on Tuesday, April 11 at 7 p.m. against Northwest College.

For the first time in school history, the Red Hawks qualified for the NJCAAE playoffs in the video game Rocket League, and Red Hawk Rocket League student athletes Colin Robinson, Cristian Baquiax and Casey Knighton will attempt to win the program’s first-ever playoff contest in the game title on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. against Western Technical College.

Two pairs of Red Hawks are also competing in the NJCAAE Intramural championships in their respective game titles.

Robinson and Leonard will compete for the Call of Duty Warzone Intramural championship on Saturday, April 22 at 8 p.m.

Making a first playoff appearance for the Red Hawk Esports program are the duo of Josh Simko and Christian Brown in the video game Call of Duty Gunfight. They will complete for the CoD Gunfight Intramural championship against Southwest Tech on Sunday, April 23 at 7 p.m.

All of the Red Hawk Escorts team’s playoff games will be streamed on the program’s official Twitch account — — or YouTube channel —