A number of players from both sides may be young and fairly new to the collegiate competitive scene but that doesn't mean Saturday's clash won't have a hint of bad blood sprinkled here and there.
Let's run it back to 2018—ISC Events hosted the Isko Invitational, a League of Legends tournament exclusively for schools in the Philippine High School System. LG Esports Jungler Simon "Jooly" Garnace played for the Pisay Eastern Visayas team 'Erudites' back then and saw his team lose to Pisay Main's 'Liyab' in the lower bracket finals.
What does this information have to do with the grand scheme of things? Four players from Oblation Esports' 'Husky' lineup comprise the 'Liyab' team that crushed Jooly's championship dreams almost 3 years ago. With AcadArena: Rivalries, he seems poised to set a few things straight.
"My teammates were Platinum back in Isko Invitational, and we almost floored them. Now that I'm on Shock, they have no chance," Jooly said.
The Prodigal Son Returns
"If you love two people at the same time, choose the second. Because if you really loved the first one, you wouldn't have fallen for the second," said former Oblation Esports star Mikey "Ferzerk" Alberto. He will be cheering from the other side of Katipunan as the coach of Ateneo's LG Esports.
A veteran of the LoL collegiate scene, Ferzerk played in the Garena Pro Gaming Series in 2015 and placed 4th in IEF 2016 Pyeongchang. He went on to win the LoL Collegiate League 2017 Spring Split and graduated as Magna Cum Laude in BS Business Administration the same year. Why pick gaming over academics when you can choose both, right?
Ferzerk coached University of the East (UE) in the Esports AcadArena (EAA) 2019 Spring Split. Under his guidance, UE finished 2nd in both Nexus and the IEF 2019 qualifiers.
He recently made his way back to Katipunan to coach LG Esports and has no problem asserting where his allegiance lies.
Tale of Two Captains
Teams will surely be counting on the tenacity and mental fortitude of their respective team captains this weekend.
LG Esports captain Kenneth "Kellogg" Alog has played in a number of EAA events in the past but is yet to win a title. He's determined to establish LG Esports as a force to be reckoned with in the scene and strongly believes that his teammates have what it takes to be the next stars of collegiate despite being rookies.
"We're excited to play against UPD again in a showmatch. Last time around we were in different roles and our jungler was even casting the game. Hopefully we show them our newfound strength," Kellogg said.
Oblation Esports 'Corgi' team captain Jimuel "Alto" Lara, on the other hand, is taking a more laidback approach heading into the event. The 5th year BS Mechanical Engineering student played in IEF 2017 in Zhuhai, China, and was the 6th man of the Oblation squad that won LCL in 2017.
When asked to give a statement for Rivalries, he simply quoted, "a wise man once said, Di ka matatalo kung di ka maglalaro."
AcadArena: Rivalries - LG Esports ADMU vs UPD Oblation Esports can be streamed live here starting at 4 PM tomorrow.