Andbox and Built by Gamers eliminated from Challengers 1 Main Event
Brandon "Mothman" Moore
4/9/2021, 2:23:04 AM
The Quarterfinals and Lower Round 1 of the North American Stage 2: Challengers 1 Main Event is over. The surprises kept rolling in much like they did in the open qualifier. This tournament will decide the first four teams to reach the NA Challengers Finals. The winner and runner up of Challengers Finals will represent the region at the next Masters even held in Iceland. That makes Stage of the Valorant Champions Tour all that more important. The first day of the Challengers 1 Main Event, unfortunately, saw a couple teams make their exit. The bright side is that they, along with the next two eliminated teams, get a free pass to the Challengers 2 Main Event.
Six series took place in the form of the Upper Quarterfinals and Lower Round 1. The day started with a pair of match ups as 100 Thieves faced Andbox and Cloud9 Blue took on Immortals. For 100 Thieves, it was business as usual. Multi-kills galore by each member, clutches by Spencer “Hiko” Martin, and lockdown plays Joshua “steel” Nissan is what has made 100 Thieves a top team and it worked wonders against Andbox. A 2:0 victory saw 100 Thieves win Ascent 13:7 and Bind 13:9.
Cloud9 Blue manage to pull off what some would call an upset against Immortals. C9 Blue has struggled to make it out of the qualifying rounds in Stage 1. A fire must have been lit under the team heading into Stage 2, as they defeated Gen.G Esports to get here. Now, against Immortals, they’ve bested yet another team from the first Masters tournament. The likes of Son “xeta” Seon-ho and Michael “poiz” Possis pushed C9 ahead. After falling hard on Ascent 13:3, they clawed their way to a 2:1 map count after ending Haven 13:9 and Split 13:10.
The next pair of contests pit XSET against Built By Gamers and Team Envy against Version1. BBG was coming off of the high of defeating Sentinels in the open qualifier. That high was never going to last. XSET came to play and proved they belong in the Tier 1 conversation, continuously showing up in these big events. Bryce “PureR” Lovell did his thing as Jett and fragged out as XSET dominated BBG, turning this David vs. Goliath story on its head. Ascent ended with a 13:6 score and Haven was even more of a statement at 13:3 for the 2:0 beatdown.
The last Upper Quarterfinals match up in the bracket was a bit surprising, but also a bit expected. Team Envy battled a Version1 team that sent FaZe Clan packing. The win over the Masters runner up team was in the past, however. V1 had to focus on an extremely tough and consistent Envy squad. Naturally, Victor “Victor” Wong and Jake “kaboose” McDonald fragged out to keep Team Envy in the Upper Bracket. Haven was the closest map, going to Team Envy 13:9. No one expected Version1 to turn around and 13:3 Envy on their own map pick, Split. Team Envy retaliated on Ascent and finished the series 2:1 with a 13:4 victory.
The four teams that were defeated in the Upper Bracket had to fight for their lives in this tournament. Immortals battled Andbox in two extremely close map. The consistency of Andrew “ShoT_UP” Orlowski and Noah “jcStani” Smith across both maps was too much for Andbox. Both Split and Ascent ended 13:11. If any round went a different way, this series could have seen drastically different results. Kudos to Immortals for holding on and pulling it out. Thanks to a game ending jcStani Ace on map two, overtime was avoided, and Andbox was eliminated from this Challengers 1 Main Event. Please refer to him as “ACE-cStani” from now on.
The final series of the day would also see just one team advance. This was arguably the most entertaining Valorant of the day as Version1 and Built By Gamers left it all in the server. Jordan “Zellsis” Montemurro went off with 74 kills in the series for V1, 18 more than the top fragger for BBG. The 2:1 went to V1 and BBG’s victory over Sentinels was all but proven to be a fluke. Bind saw BBG take the first map 13:10. From there, they failed to close it out. Version1 fought them off on Haven, winning in overtime 14:12. Finally, Split saw Version1 put the nail in the coffin to close it out at 13:8.
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Brandon "Mothman" Moore
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