Team UTS: the long shots

By Riot Sephyre

A couple of months ago Team UTS didn’t exist. The university had a society for League of Legends called UTS LoLSoc, but it was more about hanging out than competing. Then the Winter Arena announcement happened and things began to get real.

Alex Manisier heard about the tournament and sent out an email to society members about putting a team together. The idea that they could actually qualify for the main Winter Regional tournament seemed like an incredible long shot, but the students wanted to have a go.

When Alex submitted the roster for Winter Arena, the qualifier for university and net café teams, they were laughed at. There were bigger names in the tournament with players that were well known. The common belief was that UTS had no hope of qualifying.

Then the tournament took place and UTS were unstoppable. They played like veterans when most of them had never been to a LAN tournament before. They ignored the doubters and backed themselves, with the end result being a spot in the Winter Regional Round of 8.

“It’s no secret that we’re the underdogs coming into Regionals,” Alex admits. “We’re not going to give up just because we’re not an experienced professional team, though. It’s a long shot, but if we could go all the way and make it to Worlds, I’d be the happiest guy on earth.”

Alex has been digging into the general strategies of their opponents, trying to scout out as much information for each matchup as possible. He’s also trying to manage a bunch of players that have exams and classes to attend.

“The toughest part would easily be managing the players as a team strategically and pragmatically, without going overboard and turning the team into an eSports sweatshop,” he says.

xSorahh (above)

For xSorahh, the team’s top lane player, this is the chance of a lifetime. He wasn’t even on the main roster until Flubby, the previous top laner, left due to other commitments. xSorahh is the first to admit that this is all new to him as he has only played on teams with his mates before.

“I’ve played at two or three LANs for fun, as well as the experience of competing against stronger players,” he says. “Prior to Team UTS, I created a team with a group of friends and I was given the role of leading and calling the shots for the team.”

xSorahh was a relative unknown coming into the Arena. Another university student that no one had ever heard of. But when the minions spawn, reputations and hype take a back seat to kills and teamwork. xSorahh let his play on the Rift do the talking for him and he was smiling when UTS won it all.

“It was the first time I ever won a tournament in League of Legends and I am proud of what my team and I have accomplished,” adds xSorahh.

ChuffeR (above)

There is one person on the team that’s been up there with the veterans of the Oceanic circuit before. The team’s marksman ChuffeR is well-known – one of the other teams in the Regional is even named after him. His charge through the Arena reminded many why he was once considered one of the region’s best carries, even if he has suffered from nerves in the past.

“I always get nervous before a tournament, but I frequently remind myself that my opposition feel the same,” he explains. “I do get very shaky sometimes, but I feel the pressure helps improve my concentration.”

There has already been a lot of speculation about how ChuffeR will fare if UTS goes up against Your Soul Shall Chuffer. Given they are both in the same group, there’s a strong chance of it happening. The nightmare scenario for YSSC is that ChuffeR, their former sub, could be the instrument of their demise in the Winter Regional.

 

 You can watch Team UTS take on Avant Garde Ascension in the Round of 8 on Sunday 25/05/2014. Coverage starts from 6pm AEST on the stream page.

 

 


3 years ago