HAWTHORNE, NJ - On Tuesday, Hawthorne High School held their first "E-Sports Tournament" for students, complete with tiered elimination games.  Students, under the auspices of the school, signed up and gathered to test their mettle with a Nintendo classic, "Super Smash Brothers."

Joe Brislin, Director of Technology of Hawthorne Public Schools, said, "Round 1 of the Super Smash Brothers Gaming Tournament was held during lunch periods on Tuesday, March 3. Registered students played single elimination five-minute games; winners advanced to Round 2, which will be played on March 10."

Theresa DiGeronimo is the Library Media Specialist and tournament advisor.  She believes that e-sports "support the mission of the school to strengthen communication, collaboration and problem-solving skills."  It could even assist them with their continuing education.  "Now that colleges have eSport programs that offer scholarships," she said, "the skills of our competitive gamers are validated, giving them important peer recognition as well college and career options in the gaming industry."

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Round 1 winners in the "experienced level" competition were: Jacob Rios, Louis A. Torres, John Mateus, Evan Clancy, Diego Duran, David Jacob, and Mike Dion.  Jahrid Manla received a bye. Competitors also included Romeo Randone, Yousef Maratoule, Luke Metzler, Andrey Dadian, Bishop Ruiz, Tyrese Russell, and Samir Almaidani.

"Beginner Level players will meet on Wednesdays in the Library during lunch with Experienced Level players to coach them," Brislin said.

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