Boston Win Assures Playoff Bid

April 28th
written by Moirai
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Dallas Fuel vs Boston Uprising

Uprising WINS, 4-0

Fuel stumbled on their opening attack on Anubis thanks to NotE’s D.Va and Mistakes’ Widowmaker giving them problems regardless of route they took. They ended up being full held, which Boston took advantage of by taking their time on their Attack to push onto the point. Boston waited until they had every ultimate available before engaging in their first real battle, resulting in a fire-on-all-cylinders approach that allowed Boston a quick first point.

NotE once again played a huge roll on Blizzard World, peeling for supports when needed but also making aggressive moves to force Fuel into awkward situations. Though the attack round went a bit more decently for Fuel, capturing the first point and moving all the way until just before the second. NotE and Gamsu’s tank line was the star of the show on Attack, allowing Boston a fairly quick BlizzWorld capture and putting Uprising up 2-0.

The tank line was once again the show for Boston, with NotE and Gamsu’s Roadhog and Orisa taking full control of Well to help shut Fuel out. From there, it was Mistakes and Striker’s McCree and Tracer that closed out Lighthouse, keeping their Fuel counterparts in Taimou and AKM down for the count during peak moments. With that, Uprising was guaranteed to continue their dominance with 12 match wins as well as clinched a Stage 3 playoff stage.

The last nail in the coffin for the Fuel came on Junkertown, who showed some signs of life on Junkertown. Despite Taimou’s Widow and Seagull’s Hanzo being an issue for Uprising, it was Striker’s Junkrat and Mistake’s Widowmaker that allowed Uprising the fuel they needed to push past the second point take that Dallas managed to advance to. With that, Junkertown belong to Boston, further extending their lead in the Stage and having a safety win for their second place spot in the overall standings.

Los Angeles Gladiators vs Houston Outlaws

Gladiators WIN,3-2

Both Gladiators and Outlaws had a lightning capture on Point A, but Fissure’s Winston held Outlaws back on the second point to avoid the snowball effect that they had on their attack. Time and time again, Fissure battered the Outlaws off the point and Shaz’s quick Transcendence charges helped solidify Gladiators’ defense and reduce Outlaws from a five-minute-time-bank completion to a two-minutes-left one. Though Jake led the charge on a first point capture in Overtime, it wasn’t enough to overcome the massive time bank advantage, resulting in the Gladiators taking Volskaya.

Jake’s Sombra seemed like the perfect pick to counter the tanks, which made the Gladiators struggle long enough to only complete in Overtime. Meanwhile, on Outlaws’ attack, Jake made history with the first Torbjorn appearance on Attack in OWL history, which was somewhat of a bait to allow Linkzr’s Widowmaker to operate efficiently at close range. It wasn’t enough, however, for the Outlaws to complete the map, thanks in part to a late forced reset from Gladiators that destroyed any chance of contesting the payload in Overtime.

While the Outlaws almost had the Gladiators on Numbani, the first round of Ilios seemed to be the opposite, with Gladiators taking a dominate first round on Lighthouse. Houston had far better luck on Ruins thanks to strong performances from Coolmatt and Boink, overwhelming the Gladiators to force them into awkward positioning that ultimately gave the Outlaws the advantage. The tiebreaker on Well, the Outlaws had the all-important first cap and then continuously traded with the Gladiators to stall as much as they could. With the Gladiators consistently unable to be at full power, the Outlaws had a final cleanup led by Linkzr to take their first map win and avoid a sweep.

The reverse sweep hype stayed alive thanks to fantastic performances from Linkzr and Jake, who exploited Gladiator’s lack of checking corners and over-aggressive tanks after being held to the middle of the road between first and second point. Though they had a rocky attack, the Outlaws were able to hold off the Gladiators with some cheeky plays from their DPS, resulting in a 2-2 match tie.

In the end, it was on Oasis that the Gladiators’ coordination really shined, with the team more effectively controlling Jake’s Junkrat on City Center. Jake came back with vengeance on University, however, and the Outlaws cut down Shaz’s Moira enough to be able to dismantle the Gladiators’ quad tank composition. With the tiebreaker on Gardens – a Gladiators-friendly map – Asher became the hero, continuously forcing Bani out of position on Mercy while Hydration;s Sombra denied Bani key resurrections. Biggoose and Bischu then worked to stagger Jake’s Junkrat, giving them a full 99% charge before Outlaws could capture for the first time. Despite two of Shaz’s Coalescences being denied from Linkzr’s McCree, the Gladiators were able to hold on and avoid a reverse sweep in a close 2-1 final on Oasis and 3-2 overall.

Florida Mayhem vs Los Angeles Valiant

valiant wins, 3-1

A strong attack from Valiant helped them start off strong off the back of Space’s great D.Va Self-Destructs on point, earning map completion with just over a minute and a half left on the clock. Space’s strong tank play continued onto their defense run, where it complimented SoOn’s Soldier: 76 and Bunny’s Tracer. With the DPS running wild, the Mayhem couldn’t capture more than a tick and a half on the second point, resulting in a Valiant map win.

Bunny’s Tracer once again became the turning point for the Valiant, exploiting both VAL’s lack of peel and bunching up at the end of Numbani in particular. With a final Pulse Bomb in the coffin, VAL completed the map with 1:35 left. Tviq and Manneten’s showed that Mayhem wasn’t out, however, with savior plays using Genji’s and D.Va’s ultimates.It ultimately, however, wasn’t enough, thanks to Agilities god-tier Dragon Blade to dismantle Mayhem’s attack just before second point, giving Valiant Numbani.

Ilios, in the meantime, was all about who could make a bigger impact: Agilities on Pharah or Tviq on Tracer. Despite Agilities’ best attempts to hard carry on Genji and Pharah, it was Tviq’s Tracer that stole the show, allowing Mayhem a chance to stabilize on the Lighthouse tiebreaker and win their first map of the match.

From there, the Valiant were in a rough spot moving into Junkertown. Whereas Tviq was the main issue from Mayhem in the previous rounds, it was Sayaplayer’s Widowmaker and Tracer that turned the most deadly in the Outback, turning fights on its head just as it looked like Mayhem was down for the count. However, once again, Agilities’ Genji was the superior Genji, resulting in a devastating shut down in the last few seconds of Mayhem’s attack, holding them only meters away from a Map 5 and slashing Mayhem’s comeback.

Looking ahead…

With today’s matches over, there’s only one more day for Week 3 matches: first, the Shock will take on the Spitfire, then NYXL goes against Dynasty and, the Fusion will fight the Dragons to round out the week. the Dragons are looking for their first win of the season while the Fusion, Shock and Dynasty are still in contention for Stage 3 playoffs. NYXL, meanwhile, is in a weird position in that they are sitting comfortable in playoff contention but they’re currently not in first place for the first time in their history. Still, a win here could continue their dominance in the overall and solidify their second place standing for this stage.