ESEA Playoffs Day 1 Recap

BY Andrew Miesner / July 25, 2009

Today started the ESEA Invite LAN playoffs in Dallas, Texas. The first match being covered was Back 2 Back (#3) vs Blight Gaming (#6). Back 2 Back was able to take them quite easily on the first map (de_dust2) 16-7 and move into the second map. Last time these teams met on train was at the WCG Quiver Shootout where Back 2 Back won 16-4. They were able to reproduce their result and defeat Blight 16-4 again.  Back 2 Back moved on to face compLexity in round two.

On the other side of the bracket, the first match was eMazing Gaming (#4) vs Gravitas Gaming (#5). Both these teams can compete at a high level and squared away to give us a show. The first map again being dust2 was pushed all the way into overtime. Gravitas Gaming was able to come out on top winning 21-16. The second map was de_train, and eMg was not going to give up hope. eMg pressed forward to win 10-5 first half after starting T side on train. Gravitas hit a brick wall as they switched over to T side, not winning any rounds, the final score being 16-5. Gravitas being the underdog seed wise lost their one map advantage and were pushed into a third and final map. This map was inferno, and it was a show. In the end, eMg proved to be more hungry than Gravitas and ended up taking it 16-14. eMg was set up to play EG in the second round of the upper bracket.

CompLexity vs Back 2 Back started off with compLexity rolling through Back 2 Back on inferno. The score ended 16-1 on the first map. The next map is de_nuke, where Back 2 Back actually defeated compLexity on it during the online season. Back 2 Back failed to disappoint and took de_nuke 16-14 in a nail biting match up. The third map was the good old dust2. CompLexity started out on CT side, and Back 2 Back got off to a great start but that wouldn’t last. CompLexity doing everything in their power to prove they were the better team ended up overcoming B2B 16-8, and moving on to the Upper Bracket Finals.

EG vs eMg was a quick and painless match. EG was able to show their true strength after a weak LAN at WCG Quiver Shootout and defeat eMg on the first map of de_inferno 16-10. EG continued this stomping on the second map, prospering over eMg 16-6 and moving on to the Upper Bracket Final to face CompLexity.

In the lower bracket round one, the two match ups were Gravitas Gaming vs Back 2 Back and eMazing Gaming vs Blight. The first map was set to de_dust2 as the teams joined in ready to face off. Gravitas was able to clinch the first match on a very narrow margin over B2B 16-14, giving them the upper hand rolling into the second map. As for Blight, their story told a very different tale. eMazing Gaming came out on top winning by quite the opposite score of 16-3. The second map was de_inferno, Back 2 Back’s worst nightmare and Gravitas Gaming’s best friend. Gravitas easily took the second map 16-8 and were placed through to the next round of lower bracket play. eMazing gaming going into the second map had a boat load of confidence after steam rolling Blight on the first map. This match proved to be a bit more of a match, but still produced the same result. eMg was able to take inferno 16-10 and prepare to take on Gravitas Gaming.

In the final lower bracket match of the night it was Gravitas vs eMg yet again. The story ran its course in the upper bracket first round where the two middle seeds battled it out. eMg was given the opportunity to play “God” tonight, and change their past rolling into the first map of de_nuke. Gravitas came out strong on the first map, but eMg didn’t give up without a fight. The first map ended with eMg winning 16-10. The second map was going to be a rather familiar map, dust2. eMg was seeking some revenge after losing in overtime in the upper bracket earlier in this event. Gravitas was not going down without a fight though trying their best to push the series into a third and final map, that’s exactly what they did. Gravitas won 16-14 on a nerve racking match, much like their other dust2 match. The third map of the night to be played was de_inferno. Gravitas fancied their chances on inferno, and this time came out with a little more hope and spirit than the last inferno match. Gravitas took the whole series, winning inferno 16-8, and moving onto the next round of play.

The match of the night came down to the upper bracket finals between Evil Geniuses and compLexity, the newly formed rivalry. The first match was to take place on de_dust2, a controversial map that set the path for a good match. CompLexity started strong, but faded as the match went on. EG was able to capitalize on some key rounds, pushing the score closer and closer.  CompLexity was finally able to put up a brick wall and hold EG to 10 rounds, the first map finishing 16-10 in favor of coL. The next map was de_inferno, which was obviously one of compLexity’s favorite after an earlier victory over Back 2 Back 16-1. It was another close match that had to be watched right down until the end. EG was able to make a nice come back from a 5 to 1 defecate to tie it up at 7-7. Team EG ended up to be the winners of this map, making it yet another 3 map series in this epic upper bracket final. The third and final map was de_nuke, and compLexity had to be feeling some nerves after dropping this map earlier to Back 2 Back. De_nuke is one of EG’s better maps, especially at this LAN only dropping 6 rounds to eMg on it earlier. The playing field and confidence levels were equal, both teams sitting at one map a piece. EG was able to pick up T side pistols, setting themselves up for a stellar performance. The match did not fail to disappoint their spectators giving them a good show right down to the final frag. The match ended with a score of 16-11, making EG your Upper Bracket champions and giving them a spot in the ESEA Grand Finals as your number one seeded team.