Lyceum of the Philippines University (LPU) will be carrying the biggest target on its back when the top colleges and universities in the country slug it out in the highly-anticipated inaugural season of the Collegiate Center for Esports starting on June 20.

Installed as the heavy favorites to rule the virtual world anew, the Pirates are determined to stand their ground and live up to expectations after a historic win in the CCE exhibition launch last year.

LPU, boasting the country’s first Bachelor of Science in Esports with tracks on Esports Management and Game and Design Development, reigned supreme over nine counterparts in the CCE Mobile Legends: Bang Bang 5-on-5 Varsity Cup which featured some of the country’s best basketball players.

The Pirates were led by their potent varsity basketball squad that time with MVP Yancy Remulla at the helm as they scored a 4-2 win over Mapua University in the best-of-three finale showdown.

This time in CCE’s first official season with Galaxy Racer as its official partner, the Pirates are banking on the brilliance of a new wave of student-athletes led by Remarch Eusebio, Ralph Joshua Araz, Paul Adrienne Huang, Mark Kenneth Delos Reyes, Alfonso Clemence Sales and Marc Joseph Balcita.

But Mapua and Letran, which completed the podium in the CCE launch, are not to be left behind in a bid to give LPU a run for its own money.

Lance Justin Hernandez, Roberto Lordan Jr., Earnold Alleson Feir, Lean Marcus Bigueras, Charles Emmanuel Sy and Deneil Jay Dela Cruz make up the Mapua team while Letran is bannered by Matthew Viray, Joshua Dave Dasigao, Mark Raphael Arellano, Rafael Carlos Silvestre, Rov Jupiter Valles, Ryan Christopher Portento and Samantha Shane Singh.

University of Perpetual Help System Dalta looms as the darkhorse after bagging the CCE Mobile Legends Bang Bang (MLBB) 1-on-1 Exhibition Match title also last year behind Jasper Cuevas.

Perpetual will be banking on Ralph Cauguiran this time around along with Altas basketball stud Kyle Cuevas, Jun Roque, Shawn Micahel Rey Orgo, Steve Flores and Angelo Gelsano to get the job done in the 5-on-5.

Though they fell short in both the 1-on-1 and 5-on-5 CCE launching events last year, San Beda University, Arellano U, College of St. Benilde, Mapua U, Jose Rizal U and San Sebastian College-Recoletos vow to wage an all-out fight in a whole different arena this time featuring their own promising bets.

Zhyruzz Karl Asistin, Zhyrence Karl Asistin, Allen Eyrish Garcia, Carl Danrev Lucero, Timotheo Ryan Salgado, Nathaniel Halagpas and Patrick Erick Isip compose the Arellano team, San Beda has Khristian Jade Jimenez, Matthew Tolentino, Jeremiah Tibay, Josh Kenneth Yazon, Lloyd Jon Sarmiento and Johnrey Daquil while Jorenz Louie Denosta, Ken Ceron , Kiele Bien Marin, Antoine Abcede, Miguel Diaz and Mark Asuncion lead San Sebastian.

Laurence Ong, Kime Benjamin Revaula, Kyle Ashley Malate, Carlo Kael Monton, Joshua Niño Uy, and Juabe Rigor headline EAC while Leonardo Sison, Yuri Efraim Casabuena, Kelvin Kurt Javier, Alexandre Gabrielle Laverez, Mark Jeffrey Marjolina, Jeffery Yu and Leonard Van Jaboli spearhead CSB, which also has Esports programs like Bachelor of Science in Interactive Entertainment and Multimedia Computing, Major in Game Development and Major in Game Art.

Source: Manila Bulletin (