Once again starting on Icebox, the defensive weakness shown against EG once again reared its head as Soniqs won their half, 8-4. As sides switched Sentinels managed to claw back three rounds running, however, a massive 407 ACS from Chris “pl1xx” Li was too much to overcome leading to a 13-7 scoreline as the Sentinels looked in trouble.
FaZe fought back on Haven as they were clearly the better team here. A 3.2KD from Shane “Rawkus” Flaherty and a 2.33KD from BabyJ meant after recovering from an initial pistol round loss, FaZe racked up 12 rounds in a row in a complete lockout.
Finally, the game came to Icebox where they were once again seemingly neck and neck throughout. While leads were traded back and forth in batches of two — from 3-1, to 5-7, to 9-7 etc. — before DZ broke the pattern on round 18 in a truly hectic round in which FaZe committed everything and still fell short.
While DZ closed it out 13-10 to complete the upset against FaZe, they then themselves fell short against XSET in the decider match in a 9-13, 13-10, 9-13 scoreline as they failed to qualify for Challengers 1. Nevertheless, with them only moving to their Las Vegas-based team house a matter of weeks ago, this is a good start for the roster.
Starting with this TSM game, after picking up bang last month they were clearly hoping to at the very least qualify for the Challengers Finals which they fell short of during Stage 2. Nevertheless, in their first notable game since this pickup they went out in what statistically seemed like a tight game as, after a 13-10 Noble win on map one, a TSM 13-1 win was cancelled out by a 2-13 loss.
Since this loss, TSM has already made a change announcing that Taylor “drone” Johnson — the team’s Sova player — has been benched.
And so, that leaves T1 who entered the qualifier with two new players including Braxton “Brax” Pierce who returns to the lineup after three months on TSM. Here after a rocky map one they took down Ghost Gaming to meet Envy in the decider map which, in a reversal of their prior game, saw them pretty handily take map one, only to lose maps two and three, 13-10, 13-0.
As well as being a disappointing defeat, this final map saw T1’s best performer achieve just a 0.81 Rating while Anthony “mummAy” DiPaolo secured 19 kills to three deaths in a virtual demolition as T1 leaves with serious questions surrounding their ability on Haven.
These results mean that the eight teams of Sentinels, XSET, Envy, 100 Thieves, Version1, Gen.G Esports, Rise, and Kansas City Pioneers have progressed to the double-elimination Challengers 1 event which will run from Thursday to Sunday this week.
Here the top four teams will progress onwards to the Challengers Playoffs to fight for a Major spot while the remaining four get an automatic invite to the Challengers 2 tournament at the end of the month.
The schedule for this will be as follows:
- Thursday, 8th — The Upper Bracket Quarter Finals and Lower Bracket Round 1
- Friday, 9th — The Upper Bracket Semi Finals and Lower Bracket Round 2
- Saturday, 10th — The Upper Bracket Final, Lower Bracket Round 3 and the Lower Bracket Final
- Sunday, 11th — The Grand-Final
THESPIKE.GG will cover these games as usual this coming week as Stage 3 kicks into gear with its first main event. Check back here to see the usual news and stats coverage of the games as they come.