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Kentucky esports raises hundreds for charity with Louisville in Governor’s Cup showdown

Members of the Kentucky Wildcats eSports team take on Kennesaw State in the first round of the 2023 Kentucky Overwatch LAN at The Cornerstone on April 2, 2023. UK won 2-0. | Photo provided by UKY eSports

The University of Kentucky hosted the University of Louisville for its annual esports charity-driven competition “The Governor’s Cup” at The Cornerstone on April 6.

During this two-day event both schools select different esports teams and players to face off against one another in various different games ranging from League of Legends to Tetris in one-versus-one showdowns.

The winners of each event earned points for their respective schools, earning ten points for large game like Valorant or League of Legends, five points for side games such as Super Smash Bros and three points for Tetris.

In addition, every ten dollars raised for charity would count as one point for the final score, with the winning school getting to take home the coveted Governor’s Cup and limitless bragging rights until the next showdown.

As the main purpose was to raise money for children’s hospitals, there were incentives given for donations where one of the schools could donate money to apply a penalty to their opponent during games.

Though Louisville started off strong and won the first event, the Wildcats would go on to earn the most points from events with a commanding score of 63-40 over Louisville.

“If it were just up to games, UK would win by a landslide,” UK esports club President Riley Clasby said with a smile. “However, it is a charity event, it is not determined just by gameplay, it is also determined by donations.”

Donations rolled in throughout the tournament and, in the end, both schools would raise $481 from donations, UK being responsible for $101 and Louisville responsible for the other $380, earning it a massive 38 points in the event.

The final tally of points would be 78 for Louisville and 73 for Kentucky, making the Cardinals champions of this year’s Governor’s Cup, a repeat of last year’s cup.

The event was not only the final event for esports team this semester, but also a passing of the torch as Clasby will be graduating from UK this semester and Alex Valdivia, the current Vice President of Events, will become the next president of the club beginning next semester. He already has plans for his upcoming presidency.

“Next year I really hope to connect more to the campus community,” Valdivia said. “I know that we as a club have a lot to offer.”

Valdivia, who also competed in the Super Smash Bros event, made sure to thank those who donated and showed their support from either university and emphasized the importance of the event.

UK esports will return to action next fall.

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