Fifteen Bulldogs qualified for the right to compete at The Fortress on Nov. 23.
Skyler Wahl wasn’t sure how he’d fare against his classmates when he signed up to compete in the Tech Fest esports tournament on Tuesday, Oct. 15, at Flagler Palm Coast High School.
The 15-year-old sophomore had only played Super Smash Bros. twice and didn’t own a Nintendo Switch.
One of his teachers encouraged him to signup.
“I didn’t really know what to expect,” he said. “But it was really fun competing against everyone.”
Wahl finished in third place for the fourth period section.
Forty students, on a first-come-first-serve basis, competed in the event — eight each period. The top three finishers from each period received an invite to compete in the Esports Invitational on Nov. 23 at Full Sail University’s “The Fortress,” the largest collegiate esports arena in the country.
They will compete against students from 16 other schools across Florida for a chance at the top prize: a $10,000 scholarship to Full Sail, a private university in Winter Park that specializes in audio, design, computer animation and business. The second-place finisher receives a $5,000 scholarship.
Full Sail representatives approached FPC teacher and CTE Department Head Corinne Schaefer last year with the idea of hosting a Tech Fest at FPC.
“It’s been exhausting,” she said, “but the kids are really engaged and it’s been really fun to watch.”
FPC senior Grant Hendrickson was the top finisher for the fourth period competition.
He gets together with his friends about once per week to battle each other in Super Smash Bros.
“We take it kind of too seriously,” he joked. “It was a cool experience to finally be able to use that.”
He and his fellow classmates, like sophomore Caleb Brower, who qualified for the next event can’t wait to compete alongside high school students from around the state.
“I’m excited to compete and test my skills against others,” Brower said. “It’ll be nice to see what the competition is like out of this area.”