Brandon Sturak

Brandon Sturak

Brandon is a Niagara University graduate with a passion for esports. He writes about League of Legends and esports, with analysis and commentary on both. He is a founding member Niagara University Esports and the previous mid laner/coach for the NU Esports LoL team. Twitter @GhandiLoL

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League of Legends: Worlds 2019 | Play-In Groups Day One Recap

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Clutch Gaming vs Unicorns of Love

CG vs UOL Worlds 2019 Play-Ins Day One

The 2019 World Championship Play-Ins kicked off with a bang! The first game of the day pitted Clutch Gaming ("CG") and Unicorns of Love ("UOL") against each other, and in the end, UOL got the win. They had an unpredictable team composition and great teamwork that gave them a distinct advantage. For example, when Lira and Huni dove Boss in the top lane to get First Blood, UOL all collapsed to make it a two-for-one trade.

UOL continued to capitalize on CG's mistakes throughout the early game. UOL and CG found picks from the 10 to 15 minute mark, but UOL generally came out on top with additional objective takes. The game truly broke open for UOL at 22 minutes though, when they slaughtered three CG champions near the dragon. This gave them both the dragon and their first Baron. With it, they easily destroyed multiple towers. Eventually, it fell off, but UOL claimed the second Baron at 30 minutes. This led to the destruction of all of CG's Inhibitors. At this point, UOL needed only a single pick onto Damonte to charge down mid and claim the first Nexus of Worlds.

QUICK STATS:

  • Time: 37:59
  • Kills: 8-15
  • Turrets: 3-9
  • Gold: 61.0k-66.8k
  • Dragons: 0-4
  • Barons: 0-2

DetonatioN FocusMe vs Splyce

LoL Worlds 2019 Play Ins Day One DFM SPY

Though DetonatioN FocusMe ("DFM") pulled out European caster Vedius' Nocturne mid, Splyce ("SPY") outclassed them and took their first win of Play-Ins. Xerxe accelerated the pace of the early game with his Hecarim pick, killing Gaeng for First Blood. Then he moved top and killed Evi too. Next, DFM tried to force a play in the bottom lane, but SPY turned that around to go three-for-two in kills. DFM was trying to make plays to get back in the game, but SPY was playing too well to allow that.

At 13 minutes, SPY used the previously taken Rift Herald to secure the First Tower bonus. Shortly after, two skirmishes occurred in the top and bottom lanes. SPY won both fights and accumulated three more kills. They won two more team fights, at 17 and 19 minutes respectively, to push their lead even farther. At 23 minutes, SPY was able to pick off DFM's jungler Steal and claim Baron Nashor. DFM's base crumbled under the Baron buff pressure. SPY knocked down two Inhibitors before killing three from DMF and demolishing their Nexus.

QUICK STATS:

  • Time: 26:27
  • Kills: 7-22
  • Turrets: 1-10
  • Gold: 41.2k-56.7k
  • Dragons: 1-2
  • Barons: 0-1

MAMMOTH vs Unicorns of Love

LoL Worlds 2019 Play Ins Day One MMM UOL

Despite UOL's strong performance earlier, MAMMOTH ("MMM") defeated them in their Worlds debut. AHaHacik did dive and kill Fudge in the top lane for First Blood though. But when UOL tried to dive Fudge a second time, Triple Teleported in and turned the dive around. From here, MMM controlled the pace of the game and controlled every fight. They picked up a number of kills, the First Tower bonus and multiple other towers by 20 minutes.

In the mid-game, MMM continued to find picks and winning team fights. In addition, they slew their fourth dragon, an Infernal at 28 minutes. This made them extremely powerful, which was shown at 30 minutes when MMM won a team fight three-for-zero. MMM pushed straight down the middle lane after that, but Boss and Innaxe managed to repel the invaders 2v5. With this spark of hope, UOL found a pick onto Babip at 33 minutes. But MMM soon snuffed out that spark. At 36 minutes, a team fight erupted near the Baron, where MMM clean Ace'd UOL. Since there was no one to stop them, MMM used this opportunity to push down their first Nexus of the World Championship.

QUICK STATS:

  • Time: 37:30
  • Kills: 18-8
  • Turrets: 9-2
  • Gold: 69.1k-60.3k
  • Dragons: 4-0
  • Barons: 1-0

DetonatioN FocusMe vs Isurus Gaming

LoL Worlds 2019 Play Ins Day One DFM ISG

Isurus Gaming ("ISG") kicked off their Play-Ins run with a convincing victory over DFM. It wasn't a terribly bloody game but instead came down to late game decision making and team fighting. This was because even though ISG accumulated early leads through things like First Blood and the First Tower bonus, they couldn't push their advantage much. As a result, DFM's key carries in Evi and Yutapon were able to scale up.

DFM showcased some of this scaling by winning a 19-minute team fight five-for-three. But after this, every time one team tried to fight the other disengaged. There were a number of close fights, but none of them resulted in any kills. That was until 35 minutes when ISG engaged onto DMF at the Baron pit. Here, ISG Ace'd DFM and secured the all-important Baron buff. Empowered with this buff, ISG demolished much of DFM's base quickly. All they needed was one more team fight to kill four more DFM members and claim their first Nexus of Worlds 2019.

QUICK STATS:

  • Time: 39:24
  • Kills: 12-16
  • Turrets: 3-9
  • Gold: 64.5k-75.0k
  • Dragons: 1-4
  • Barons: 0-1

MAMMOTH vs Clutch Gaming

LoL Worlds 2019 Play Ins Day One MMM CG

After a fairly rough loss earlier in the day, CG won a crucial game against MMM. It wasn't a super high-kill, action-packed game most of the time, but CG used their lane pressure to carve out a large advantage. They did start off with a fumbled dive in the top lane, where they did manage to kill Fudge but lost First Blood to him. After killing him again, CG seized the opportunity and took their famous 10 minute Rift Herald. This got them the First Tower bonus too.

CG pushed this advantage at 23 minutes, when they killed two and secured their first Baron buff. This buff allowed them to take a few towers and the middle Inhibitor. After it wore off, CG waited for the second one to spawn. They immediately started it up, and because of a horrid Smite from Lira, K1ng's Kai'Sa stole the Baron with a Void Seeker (W). Unfortunately, CG still had a massive lead. Because of this, CG won a fight at 36 minutes and claimed the Elder Dragon. CG devastated MMM with this True Damage burn, knocking down two Inhibitors. Following this, CG found two picks in MMM's jungle, which gave them the opportunity to take their opponents' Nexus.

QUICK STATS:

  • Time: 38:55
  • Kills: 2-10
  • Turrets: 1-10
  • Gold: 60.0k-72.0k
  • Dragons: 1-5
  • Barons: 1-1

Splyce vs Isurus Gaming

SPY absolutely crushed ISG in the final match of the day. Buggax did start his team off on the right foot with a solo kill on Vizicsacsi for First Blood, but Xerxe killed him and soon would kill ISG's hopes. SPY next turned their focus to the bottom game, where they caught out Oddie near the dragon pit then relentlessly attacked the bottom lane. They got two kills for Kobbe's Xayah and the First Tower bonus too. Even Vizicsacsi felt the surge when he killed Oddie by himself.

It looked doomed for ISG, but they somehow pulled off two great plays to keep themselves in the game a bit longer. The first was at 23 minutes, when ISG caught out and killed Kobbe. Shortly after, ISG killed Kobbe and Humanoid when the rest of SPY went to the side lane to gank Buggax. When ISG got these two kills they immediately headed to the Baron, but SPY contested their take and killed two. A minute later they secured the Baron themselves. ISG's Inhibitors all crumbled under the SPY's Baron pressure. SPY made one swift move to kill four ISG members in their base after destroying all three Inhibitors and then claimed their Nexus.

QUICK STATS:

  • Time: 30:04
  • Kills: 13-5
  • Turrets: 11-0
  • Gold: 56.9k-45.4k
  • Dragons: 4-0
  • Barons: 1-0

Watch the 2019 World Championship here at ESTNN TV. For more information on the tournament, teams, standings, and players, visit www.lolesports.com. Stay tuned here at ESTNN and follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more League of Legends news, articles, opinions and more.

Images via LoL Esports.

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