MediaSphere holds basketball tournament for March Madness

Students focus on the screen as they play basketball video games in the MediaSphere 2017 Tournament. The event was held in conjunction with the March Madness college basketball tournament. Photo by A.Meyers/Setonian.

NBA basketball video games played on PS4 systems were the main topic of the MediaSphere 2017 Tournament event held behind Cecilian Hall in the MediaSphere on March 24.

“One of the things I try to provide are programs on Friday nights,” said Dymphena Clark, a student engagement graduate assistant. “I try to give students an opportunity to have activities that they can participate in on campus that they are interested in and provide friendly competition to entice attendance, instead of students going out and partying.”

The event, which piggybacks the March Madness college tournament, gets many students interested because it gives them time to have an experience together in an all March Madness location.

To set up for the tournament, Clark mentioned how she designed a flyer for the event and artists who work in the MediaSphere created a banner. Anthony Camasso, an assistant MediaSphere coordinator and junior accounting major, mentioned how the workers involved with the event had to “set up consoles and games and then get food from the cafeteria.” Pizza, chips and drinks were provided beforehand by the cafeteria staff.

“I thought the tournament was a really cool event to put on,” said Nathan Davis, a freshman Spanish education major who participated in the tournament. “Everybody there had a really fun time and some people even came to just watch.”

“I wish I could have performed better,” he joked. “But it was a good time nonetheless.”

Camasso said there are usually two to three tournaments per semester with 10 total games played. For one person to win, he or she needs to win four straight games.

“I knew some of the players that would be in the tournament that would be a challenge, in which we played really good games,” said Evan Byrd, a senior business administration major with a minor in computer science who won the event. “Although, this is not the first time I have won. I also won in the NBA 2K15 (2015) MediaSphere tournament as well. So in the end, it’s pretty cool to win two 2K championships before graduating.”

Junior English major Jack Murphy, a MediaSphere technician, recalled that the NBA basketball game was the “most played game in the MediaSphere this year, it even beat out Mario Kart,” adding that everyone loved it.

“It’s good to get people active on campus and doing things with other students,” Camasso said. “I feel it makes a more lively and exciting campus. It’s most important that they have a fun time and I guess they can see the MediaSphere is a great space to spend time and get your mind off school.”

“School can get so stressful, it’s nice that you have somewhere to go where you can just unwind for a couple of hours with your friends and play a game that you like or even meet new friends,” Murphy said.

Although Camasso mentioned how “it’s been a little bit more packed in the past,” he felt “it’s been a solid turnout and a good number of competitive players.” With this, Murphy said how he expected more students in attendance, but he felt it was a good turnout and that it seemed all the regulars showed up.

Clark hopes to have two programs a month next semester: one gaming related and another focused on relaxing or studying.

“The first tournament I hosted we had four people who showed up and played. From what I was told, we tripled our attendance on this event,” Clark said. “Though we did not reach my personal goal for the tournament, I believe that we succeeded in reaching interested students and providing a competitive, entertaining evening. Which is all that I can ask for, is that those who did participate had a good time.”

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