The two undefeated CS:GO titans of the New England region, the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and the University of Connecticut, are going head-to-head in this Thursday’s broadcast match. To find out what both teams are thinking about their upcoming match and the season so far, we put together an interview with coordinators Charles “chops” Schopperle from Amherst and Ali “aliD” Dika from Connecticut.
Going into the match, how does it feel knowing you're about to play another undefeated team in your region?
UMass: It feels good. I think it will be a fun game. Most of the other games have not been close.
UConn: It’s an interesting matchup for us. Most of our games this semester have been rather one-sided, [but] we always love to play close games. This may end up being what determines who the best team in New England is, with how the rest of the schools in the region are doing.
Has the team made any changes since last semester?
UMass: Yes, we completely changed the roster. Patrick “mock-cup” Meringolo and I are the only two members from last semester’s roster. Johnny “fly” Gagnon, Will “oof” Anderson, and Zachary “ZFranks” Frankel are new.
UConn: Our team has been the same for almost two years now. We’ve been playing ESEA and CSL [and] adding NACCS this season with the same core for four years. We added Shanary “StoneColeQ” Stewart after our freshman year and Jason “splix” Rich for our sophomore year. We got rather lucky [as we’re] all around the same age, and since our graduation date is the same, we’re hoping to accomplish something in collegiate Counter-Strike, be it this year or next.
What matches this season were particularly difficult?
UMass: One time someone tried to report us for BM (bad manners) and tried to overturn the match because we used smiley faces. It didn't work.
UConn: The match versus Northeastern was an interesting one, and [was] so far the most difficult one in CSL. We have a rivalry of sorts with them and have played them a lot over the years, [and] this time [we came] out on top. It was revenge for us, as they had come to our school for a LAN and came out victorious. I’d definitely consider us friends, but we always want to be on top, so that was a great but also difficult match for us. Their team is full of quality players.
What was your most memorable moment in the season so far?
UMass: Running down mid on CT Inferno 15 times in a row. It worked every time.
UConn: I would say the most memorable moment was definitely beating Northeastern, like I said in the previous question. It felt really good to get revenge on them and come out on top. I still find myself roasting their captain about the match to this day. Not one of our other victories in our thus-far undefeated season have brought the same feeling.
Pineapple on pizza, yes or no? Why?
UMass: YES, sometimes you gotta switch things up.
UConn: Pineapple on pizza is borderline heresy. We would never let anybody who entertains the idea anywhere near our team.
Which team are you rooting for? Tune in to our stream on Thursday at 9 p.m. Eastern / 6 p.m. Pacific to see the showdown!