What Gull Lake CyberPatriot and eSports will do after their majority senior membership leaves

2017’s team celebrating their acheivement of top 6 in state. Photo courtesy of Gull Lake’s Cyberpatriot team.
A photo of students playing Super Smash Bros. Photo Courtesy of Isaac Cochran.
A photo of Brenan Weststrate, a member of cybersecurity. Photo courtesy of Brenan Weststrate.
A photo of Isaac Cochran, captain of the Super Smash Bros. team. Photo courtesy of Isaac Cochran.

With the school year coming to a close, many clubs will have a good amount of their members graduating and therefore will take a hit in number of students participating. A few such clubs that will be losing a majority of their student base are the CyberPatriot club and the eSports club. A vast majority of the eSports club’s members are seniors, followed with a large margin by freshmen.

The club, founded just this year, has found massive success in their senior lead teams, chief amongst these being the Super Smash Bros. team, which has won several tournaments and competitions, as well as having been able to fund themselves with several gaming sit-ins, school district tournaments, and fun events.

“My plans are to give seniors one last hurrah by competing in the Summer Opens of the HSEL, which allows leaving seniors and hopefully any new ones we get ready and eager to play the games they love,” said junior Isaac Cochran, president of the eSports club.

Cochran said that HSEL stands for the High School eSports League which is a league similar to the ones that our baseball and track teams compete in each year, except for eSports.

“It’s a program that allows students with particular skills in certain games to earn up to $2,000 in scholarship money just for playing the games they love,” Cochran said. “The Summer Open is the upcoming season of tournaments for the HSEL that will happen throughout the Summer until Fall.” 

The CyberPatriot team is having a very similar situation. While they don’t possess as large a desparaty for their ratio of seniors to the other grades, the senior are undoubtedly the best anyone in that club has yet to see, as they won the Michigan state championship earlier this year. That was the first time the Gull Lake High School Cyberpatriot team had ever brought home the gold, and it was from the all senior team. While this is cause for  celebration, it does raise the question as to whether or not this feat can be replicated by the other teams next year.

In order to figure out the answer to this question, I sought out seniors Brenan Weststrate, one of the key members of the senior team who won the championship earlier this year, for their input and ideas.

“As far as I know, Alex Peterson is the new captain of Hydratech, one of our teams,” Westrate said. “The two other teams from this year will probably mix and merge together since all the seniors are gone. We took advantage of innovation day to get as many people signed up, so at the bare minimum there’ll be at least two teams, possibly three. CSIC, a new class that focus’ on certifications, will be arising which hopefully those two teams will take advantage of and help advance their skills.”

Weststrate said he and the other senior are giving the other teams their notes along with plenty of advice.

“As far as the students who have participated this year that weren’t seniors, I’ll put money on the fact that they will likely surpass us, and likely even get to nationals,” Westrate said.


Austin Miller

I am in 12th grade. I am a reporter for the magazine.

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