Other News

GCI powers esports tournament, University of Alaska Anchorage takes on University of South Florida

North & South: League of Legends tournament open to Alaska and Florida residents, UAA and USF students

ANCHORAGE, Alaska—North battles South in an upcoming esports tournament powered by GCI between the University of Alaska Anchorage and the University of South Florida. Alaska and Florida will battle in a 5V5 League of Legends Tournament on Aug. 1 and 2.

Esports are organized, competitive, online gameplays between two teams, governed by a strict set of rules and guidelines. GCI is currently the provider of choice for esports in Alaska.

The tournament will be streamed live on Aug. 1 and 2 at noon AKST on Twitch and uploaded to YouTube. Prizes for first and second place are provided by GCI.
“At GCI, we’re really focused on Alaska’s students, and we’re always looking for new ways to invest in education to meet students’ needs,” said Dr. Pam Lloyd, Vice President of GCI Government, Healthcare & Education Corporate Strategy. “We’re proud to be able to provide Alaska’s students with high-speed internet for schoolwork, e-learning, and now, esports.”

As the pandemic turned out the lights on traditional sports and professional teams were sent home to quarantine, esports have surged in popularity. Since March, the online streaming platform Twitch has seen sharp increases in viewership, active channels and time watched.

Pre-coronavirus, schools and universities in Alaska were already taking note of esports. Last year the Alaska School Activities Association announced it would sanction esports as a competitive school activity, with several schools participating in the structured competition so far. University of Alaska Fairbanks recently announced the hire of a dedicated esports coordinator, while its sister school in Anchorage, University of Alaska Anchorage, established its esports club in 2017.
As Alaska’s fastest internet provider, Lloyd says that GCI is the essential network provider for gamers and esports players. GCI supports esports initiatives and programs at the University of Alaska Anchorage, Alaska School Activities Association, Alaska Federation of Natives Conference, Alaska Society for Technology in Education and the Children’s Hospital at Providence.

As Alaska leads the way in skilled competitive gameplay, UAA’s tournament against USF provides an opportunity for all Alaska and Florida residents to see how they stack up. More information about how GCI supports esports can be found at www.gci.com/esports. For more information about the North and South tournament, visit www.smash.gg.

About GCI

GCI provides data, mobile, video, voice and managed services to consumer and business customers throughout Alaska. GCI has delivered services for nearly 40 years to some of the most remote communities and in some of the most challenging conditions in North America. Learn more about GCI at www.gci.com. GCI is a wholly owned subsidiary of GCI Liberty, Inc. (Nasdaq: GLIBA, GLIBP). Learn more about GCI Liberty at www.gciliberty.com.