An E-sports Team in the Time of Covid-19

Sara Pender, Staff Writer

Sports teams are an important element of the school culture at Minnetonka High School. At any point in the year, one can find a group of students participating and competing in activities. During Covid-19, Minnetonka formed an online sports or E-sports team that now competes in online video gaming.

Riley Gonzalez, ‘23, explained that his team has five members, and they meet together after school to “play video games online against other schools.”

The school provides many different games and, currently, the team is playing “League of Legends”– a “5 versus 5 moba” which is an “attack other people’s bases kind of game.”

The team meets through Discord, a virtual “meeting place where you can talk online with a bunch of different people,” which is very convenient, given the current situation regarding the pandemic. It is through Discord that they meet with other schools, chat and play video games against each other.

Gonzalez says his favorite thing about the e-sports team is the “coaches’ willingness for us to grow as players and the support they have brought us.”

The team has also helped Gonzalez make more friends and meet new people, in addition to helping him be more “proactive at school.” He also said that it has “given a new social aspect with people I didn’t know had something in common with me.”

Tyler Barthelemy, the Co-Head Varsity E-sports Coach, explained that the team formed in order for students interested in gaming to “stay connected to the school, be part of a team, and compete on a state, national, and international level.”

He also said that they play modern video games like “Super Smash Brothers Ultimate,” and “Call of Duty: Cold War,” as well as more traditional games like chess.


Barthelemy says his favorite part about the team is “watching the students find success, whether by making friends with students in other grades, feeling a sense of team camaraderie, or by winning a game against an opposing school”.

Even in a global pandemic, students can still participate in clubs and activities they are passionate about. Minnetonka students are constantly encouraged to get involved, meet new people, make new friends, and persevere and adjust during a difficult time to continue to do the things they are interested in, especially when they are available in safe online environments. Through the E-sports team, Gonzalez found others that enjoyed the same activities that he did and adjusted to the current global situation we have all found ourselves in.

Although registration is currently closed to join this team, it will re-open next year when fall sport and /activities begin registration. Students can register through Minnetonka’s Activities and Athletics online registration form.