Collegiate Valorant is ready to grab the spotlight again with the CVAL 2023 winter season set to pick up right where the fall left off.
Collegiate esports are on the rise and Valorant is back for another go. The fall season was nothing short of a success, but teams don't have any more time to celebrate. They have to gear up for the CVAL 2023 winter season.
Before things shifts into full gear, let's revisit the North's previous season and preview the upcoming winter.
A look back at the fall season
Phase 2 of the fall CVAL season delivered an incredible final bracket. There were 32 teams, but only one was able to claim ultimate victory. That victory was taken by force as the top team gave up just one map across their six straight wins.
Here are the top four from that tournament:
- Northwood University
- Carleton Ravens
- UW Gold
- Indiana Hoosiers
Both Northwood and Carleton cemented a spot at the CVAL championship event by placing in the top two. This doesn't mean they'll be sitting on their hands until then, however. Both teams plan to compete during the winter season and continue their dominance.
Hear from a couple of last season's stars
Esports.gg was able to speak with a player from Northwood University and Carleton Ravens prior to the start of the CVAL 2023 winter season. We asked them both a couple of simple questions just to see how their mentality is shaping up for the next slate of matches.
Benjamin “ripbenjii” Park of Northwood University expressed his team's willingness to continue competing at a high level during the winter. This comes after his championship run at Red Bull Campus Blutch. He was asked, "After winning the Grand Final in the fall, what expectations do you and the team have for the winter season?"
His response was short and sweet:
"Our expectations remain the same and we plan on winning the winter season as well."
A follow up question was then presented, "Do you have any tricks up your sleeve to keep things fresh and to keep other teams guessing this season?"
"We haven't had time to practice since most of us were preparing for Challengers qualifiers, but we’ll have some new stuff we haven't shown. Don't want to leak anything."
Next, we had the opportunity to speak to the North region's second place team from the fall, "With already qualifying for the CVAL championship event, are you and the team still planning on giving it your all during the winter season?"
Waleed “9er” Halees had this to say:
"We always give it our all when we play. We have a reputation to adhere to and maintain. We have been at the top of Canadian collegiate alongside the University of Alberta for a while now and we are going to go harder this semester than we did last semester."
Carleton fell just short in the Grand Final and has a chance to remedy that, "Keeping that mentality in mind, what kind of adjustments have you and the team made since last season to ensure you can take the number one spot this time around?"
"We have been thinking outside the box when it comes to team compositions and who plays what. We are reinventing the wheel. Something most teams will not be used to."
CVAL 2023 winter season competition dates
For those interested in following along with the CVAL 2023 winter season, and future seasons, you can find everything you need to know on the official RSAA website. Competition in the winter will take place during the follow dates:
- Phase 1 - Rounds 1 & 2 - January 21 & 22
- Phase 1 - Rounds 3 & 4 - January 28 & 29
- Phase 1 - Rounds 5 & 6 - February 4 & 5
- Phase 2 - Rounds of 64 & 32 (Single Elim) - February 11
- Phase 2 - Round of 16 (Single Elim) - February 12
- Phase 2 - Double Elim Winner Round 1 - February 18
- Phase 2 - Double Elim Winner Round 2 & Loser Round 1 - February 19
- Phase 2 - Double Elim Winner Final & Loser Round 2 - February 25
- Phase 2 - Loser Round 3 - February 26
- Phase 2 - Loser Final - March 4
- Phase 2 - Grand Final - March 5
Just like in the fall, the top two teams of the CVAL 2023 winter season will secure a spot at the championship event in the summer. Many of last season's toughest opponents are back and are hungry to prove they are the best in collegiate Valorant.