EWU Cyber Team Off to Nationals After Win

March 15, 2023 By David Meany

EWU computer science students are heading to nationals this spring after taking first place in the Northwest regional of a major national cyber competition.

To win the March 11 NCAE Cyber Games, the ‘EWU Cyber Defenders’ emerged from a field of teams from The University of Denver, Boise State University, City University of Seattle, Idaho State University, two teams from Colorado Mesa University, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Missoula College, and the University of Idaho.

The National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity (NCAE-C) inspires college students to enter the exciting realm of cyber competitions – and to one day possibly work in the field.

The Eastern team included students Amy Washington, Timbre Freeman, Sean O’Dowd, Alex Moomaw, Ethan Rabe, Tristen Greene, David Parker, Lilly Fetzer, Nick Gainer and Lewis Thomas. They were coached by Stu Steiner, EWU assistant professor of computer science and electrical engineering.

The competition was 20 percent capture the flag and 80 percent securing infrastructure – meaning teams had to secure computer servers, and computer network for active attacks. Points are awarded based on how long you can keep the infrastructure up and running.

EWU Cyber Defenders tallied a total of 4,145 points out of a possible 11,250 total points, edging out the closest team by 354 points in a back-and-forth battle. Eastern’s 4,145 points is also the highest score in both the northwest and northeast regional competitions to date.

The nationals will be held in Tampa, FL., on April 22.