OpTic Gaming 1 - Cloud9 0
OpTic Gaming put together its first 2-0 week in the young League of Legends franchise's history by shredding Cloud9 to kick off the second half of Week 5 in the North American League Championship Series Summer Split on Sunday in Los Angeles.
The opening portion of the contest was defined by OpTic Gaming's rotations into the bottom lane, which netted AD carry Noh "Arrow" Dong-hyeon's Varus and mid laner Tristan "PowerOfEvil" Schrage's Talon early kills. The early success was the biggest reason for OpTic's victory, as the two carries took turns dominating the teamfights for the rest of the game. PowerOfEvil was a critical factor in the mid game as an important triple kill turned around what appeared to be a winning engagement from Cloud9 (3-7), helping OpTic Gaming (4-6) open up multiple lanes across the Rift.
That battle essentially gave OpTic full control of map by the late game, allowing it to set up sieges to break into Cloud9's base. Arrow's Varus got plenty of protection during the ensuing fights and blew away turrets and members of Cloud9 when the team tried to contest. The sheer offensive pressure allowed OpTic Gaming to secure an uncontested Baron kill that empowered its push to victory. A final stand by Cloud9 was voided by yet another timely offensive assault from Arrow, who scored a triple kill in the final teamfight for OpTic's second ace of the game. The AD carry's late game dominance earned him a 9/0/11 KDA (kills/deaths/assists) as well as most damage dealt to champions.
Cloud9 starts off Week 6 against Team SoloMid at 5 p.m. ET on Saturday, while OpTic Gaming looks to climb further in the standings when it takes on Counter Logic Gaming at 6 p.m. ET later that day.
-- Ben Wong
FlyQuest 1 - 100 Thieves 0
FlyQuest won a base race late in its matchup against 100 Thieves to complete a comeback victory and move into a tie with its Sunday competition atop the NA LCS.
The base race was necessary thanks to the sheer dynamic force that 100 Thieves (6-4) exhibited throughout much of the game. FlyQuest (6-4) attempted the attack to counter what had been up to that point a ferocious split-pushing assault from 100 Thieves. FlyQuest's defenses held as it squashed multiple would-be teamfights before it initiated a daring mid lane assault. 100 Thieves wasn't able to fully recover from its losses, forcing it to either answer the mid lane push in a 4-vs.-5 situation or send its surviving damage dealers to push down the side lanes.
100 Thieves opted for the latter approach, which set the stage for a frantic final few minutes as both teams attempted to blitz down their opposing Nexus. While the final result was incredibly close, FlyQuest's full five-man attack crumbled the objective first.
It's a curious decision that looks all the worse in hindsight, as 100 Thieves sported a decided advantage through large portions of the contest. Jungler Andy "AnDa" Hoang's Kindred and top laner Kim "Ssumday" Chan-ho's Dr.Mundo took turns collecting early kills and torching would-be attackers leading into the mid game, which allowed 100 Thieves to move around the map effortlessly. The team's inability to land a final blow ultimately set in motion the base race and inevitable unraveling, but had 100 Thieves opted to engage in the aforementioned mid lane teamfight, the damage may not have been so severe.
FlyQuest will test its mettle next against another top-ranked team in Echo Fox at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, while 100 Thieves look to keep pace as it faces off against Clutch Gaming at 9 p.m. ET later that day.
Team Liquid 1 - Counter Logic Gaming 0
Team Liquid exploded past Counter Logic Gaming in a quick contest.
While CLG (5-5) might have looked like it had a shot at winning this game at one point, it was nothing more than a ruse as Liquid (6-4) was simply biding its time before popping off to close out the game. The win was a much-needed one for a Liquid team that had been struggling throughout the summer split thus far.
Liquid got off to a nice start when it picked up the first two kills in the opening 10 minutes of the game. While CLG picked up a couple kills of its own during the mid game, Liquid seemed wholly unconcerned and simply focused on securing objectives to pad its growing lead. This resulted in a sizable 3,000-gold advantage once the game passed the 20-minute mark.
At that point, CLG started to sense that the game was slipping away, resulting in an ill-fated Baron attempt.
CLG tried to bait Liquid into a fight in the top-side river, but Liquid was prepared. With bottom laner Yiliang "Doublelift" Peng and his Kai'Sa expertly dashing along the backline and avoiding certain death with a sliver of health while doling out impressive damage, Liquid picked up an easy 4-for-1 teamfight win that allowed it to easily secure the Baron at 23 minutes. With full control of the game comfortably in hand, Liquid moved into CLG's base soon after and won yet another clean teamfight to lock up the win in just 26 minutes.
Liquid will now look toward a matchup with Golden Guardians at 8 p.m. ET on Saturday, while CLG hopes to get back on track against OpTic Gaming in the very next game at 9 p.m. ET.
-- Wyatt Donigan
Team SoloMid 1 - Clutch Gaming 0
Team SoloMid capitalized on the mistakes of Clutch Gaming to secure a win Sunday.
TSM (5-5) and Clutch Gaming (4-6) were neck-and-neck through the majority of this game, as both teams were trying to find the opportunity to strike and find an advantage of any kind. As the game progressed, though, it was clear that Clutch simply didn't have enough to keep up with the teamfighting prowess of TSM.
Neither team was interested in forcing the issue early on, as the first blood for TSM didn't come until the 15-minute mark in a one-for-one trade in the mid lane. Soon after, TSM tried to keep the momentum moving with another pair of kills in the bottom lane at 19 minutes. Even with those kills in hand, Clutch managed to hold a slight gold lead thanks to superior objective control. But Clutch certainly didn't feel comfortable enough with the lead and looked to try and break ahead with a gutsy Baron rush at 26 minutes that ended up being the team's doom.
Clutch Gaming whittled down the Baron and almost came away with the buff, but jungler Nam "LirA" Tae-yoo missed out on the Smite, which allowed Jonathan "Grig" Armao to come in for TSM with a Smite of his own to steal away the buff. Clutch was then trapped inside the Baron pit, which allowed TSM to easily lay waste to the entire team in the form of a 5-for-1 ace that completely flipped the game on its head. Had Clutch secured the Baron, it could have easily wrangled control of the game.
Missing out on that Smite proved to be the final straw that broke Clutch's back, however, as the buff meant that TSM mid laner Soren "Bjergsen" Bjerg could keep on decimating teamfights on his way to a 9/0/5 KDA (kills/deaths/assists) on Talon. With TSM doing whatever it wanted in those final few minutes, it was just a matter of time before it finally put Clutch away for a 34-minute victory.
TSM hopes to turn this victory into a win streak when it faces Cloud9 to open Week 6 at 5 p.m. ET on Saturday, while Clutch will try and stop its two-game skid against 100 Thieves in the next game at 6 p.m. ET.
Echo Fox 1 - Golden Guardians 0
Echo Fox took home a victory over Golden Guardians on the back of some impressive macro shotcalls to close out Sunday's NA LCS slate.
While Echo Fox (6-4) might have bookended this game with a pair of decisive engagements, the mid game was anything but certain. Golden Guardians (5-5) gave Echo Fox a run for its money the entire game and even ended the game with a slight lead in kills. It simply wasn't enough to withstand the solid macro game from the side of Echo Fox, however.
Golden Guardians attempted to put all of its eggs into jungler Juan "Contractz" Arturo Garcia's basket in this one, and it almost paid off. After giving up the first blood just three minutes into the game, Golden Guardians picked up nine of the next 12 kills and looked poised to take over the game. Contractz's Nocturne was sitting at a beefy 5/0/2 KDA (kills/deaths/assists) and was ready for whenever his team decided to turn toward the Baron. The only problem was that Golden Guardians didn't have proper vision across the map, which allowed Echo Fox to make a move that flipped the entire script.
At the 24-minute mark, Echo Fox snuck into the Baron Pit, burned it down to secure the buff and then used mid laner Tanner "Damonte" Damonte's Ryze ultimate to warp away to safety. Golden Guardians tried to battle against the objective with a couple kills after the buff had expired, but the damage was done. Echo Fox simply waited for the right opportunity and found a clean ace inside its opponents' base to close out the game in 32 minutes. Echo Fox's win now sets up a four-way tie at the top of the standings as Echo Fox, FlyQuest, 100 Thieves and Team Liquid all sit at 6-4.
Echo Fox will look to break ahead in the standings when it takes on FlyQuest at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, while Golden Guardians hope to get back into the conversation when it faces Team Liquid in the next game at 8 p.m. ET.