North American League of Legends Championship Series – Week 5, Day 2
XD.GG vs Curse
XDG: Wukong, Yasuo, Pantheon
CRS: Kassadin, Elise, LeBlanc
XDG: Olaf (Zuna), Annie (BloodWater), Gragas (Mancloud), Sivir (Xmithie), Trundle (Benny)
CRS: Leona (Saintvicious), Ezreal (Cop), Dr. Mundo (Quas), Vi (IWillDominate), Vladimir (Voyboy)
Zuna and Benny decided to go for an early invade on Curse’s red buff which they managed to secure. Zuna then rushed to his own red buff to ensure that IWillDominate could not respond. XDG focused on keeping IWillDominate down early with repeated invades and ward clearing by Zuna.
The beginning of the game was extremely slow with both teams just farming for the first 13 minutes. Finally, Saintvicious landed a Zenith Blade to Solar Flare combo on BloodWater to set up Cop for first blood. XDG rushed back to the bottom lane in hopes of getting a kill, but Curse was ready and scored an easy double kill. At the same time, IWillDominate finally made the first gank of the game and landed a kill on Benny in the top lane. IWillDominate immediately returned to the top lane after Benny respawned and picked up another easy kill.
Mancloud went for a kill on IWillDominate who was lurking around the dragon. Quas teleported onto a ward and, with both teams nearby, a quick teamfight broke out. Curse was able to take down Zuna, who was too deep in the fight and then turned around and picked up a kill on BloodWater who was flanking from the lower river. XDG picked up its first kill on Voyboy and ultimately were able to push Curse away and pick up the dragon even though they lost the fight. Both teams returned to their lanes to continue farming. Saintvicious attempted to clear a pink ward in the bottom tri-bush but, after missing his ultimate, he was jumped on by three members of XDG for an easy kill and the bottom lane turret. Shortly after, Mancloud roamed top and picked up a kill on Quas with Benny.
XDG, feeling a little confident, attempted to steal the Curse blue buff. Unfortunately, a misplaced Explosive Cask by Mancloud allowed for Curse to engage on XDG. By chaining Hemoplague and Solar Flare they were able to kill Mancloud easily and then purse BloodWater for another kill. The teams regrouped and met up for another fight at dragon. Curse initiated this time but they were the team with ultimates on cooldown. XDG got easy kills on Voyboy and Saintvicious which allowed them to turn the fight around and capture another dragon along with the mid inner turret. Curse responded to the XDG team pressure by split pushing the bottom lane with Quas for an easy outer turret.
Saintvicious was over extended in the top lane and XDG was able to catch him for an easy kill. However, at the same time, Mancloud got caught in Curse’s red side jungle. XDG attempted to aid their teammate, but as soon as Mancloud died, XDG lacked the damage to help and instead gave three more kills to Curse. This allowed Curse to secure an easy Baron buff while only losing their bottom inner turret. With the buff, Curse set their sights on the base of XDG and captured the mid inner turret before rotating to the top lane. They attempted to siege the inner turret there, but one spell combo from Mancloud deleted Saintvicious from the map and forced Curse to retreat.
Curse returned to the split push strategy with Quas in the bottom lane. He was able to get the bottom inner turret easily which made XDG initiate five versus four on Curse in the top lane. Mancloud was able to get a kill on Voyboy, but it wasn’t fast enough as the Cusre mid laner got a lot of damage onto XDG. This allowed Cop to kill Mancloud which removed almost all of the damage potential from XDG. Curse pushed onto the remaining members of XDG and got four kills. After that it was a matter of taking down some turrets and securing the Nexus for the win in 41 minutes.
Cloud 9 vs Team Dignitas
C9: Kayle, Gragas, Annie
DIG: Kassadin, LeBlanc, Elise
C9: Thresh (LemonNation), Pantheon (Meteos), Caitlyn (Sneaky), Shyvana (Balls), Kha’Zix (Hai)
DIG: Lee Sin (Crumbzz), Sivir (Imaqtpie), Dr. Mundo (Cruzer), Leona (KiWiKiD), Veigar (Scarra)
Some early aggression in the bottom lane immediately put Imaqtpie behind. He eventually fell to Sneaky for the first blood at three and a half minutes. Meteos decided to camp the bottom lane and immediately killed Imaqtpie again when he returned to lane. Dignitas’s jungler went to the mid lane to get some pressure on the tower and hopefully get attention away from the bottom lane. Crumbzz then rotated bottom lane for a gank and a much needed kill for Imaqtpie. Dignitas immediately took an early dragon, but traded Cruzer in the top lane to a two man dive by Cloud 9.
Hai attempted to jump on Scarra alone in the mid lane, but Crumbzz was there to protect his mid laner. After a stun from Scarra’s Veigar, Crumbzz was able to dive under tower and get an easy kill on Hai. A short time later, Meteos decided to make his presence known in the mid lane as well, which resulted in a kill on Scarra for Hai. Cloud 9 then set up for an attempt at dragon, but instead Meteos used his Grand Skyfall on Scarra in the mid lane. Scarra’s Event Horizon helped delay Cloud 9 long enough for Crumbzz to respond which resulted in both mid laners dying. Cruzer Teleported mid lane to hold the turret and kept Cloud 9 around long enough for Imaqtpie and KiWiKiD to rotate top and reinitiate on the enemy team to pick up a kill on LemonNation, but Crumbzz was unable to escape with his life. Cloud 9 was forced to retreat and Dignitas picked up another dragon.
Cloud 9 decided to exert pressure across the map. Balls easily killed Cruzer in the top lane and captured his turret before rotating mid to help Hai pick up the outer turret as well. Meanwhile, the three other members of Cloud 9 grouped in the bottom lane to pick up another outer turret as well as a kill on Imaqtpie. Cloud 9 initiated on Dignitas in the mid lane when KiWiKiD was overextended. They were able to get the quick kill, but Scarra was able to respond with a kill on Hai. However, Cloud 9 continued to pursue and eventually got two more kills before retreating with very little health.
Cloud 9 set up for an early Baron attempt. Dignitas decided to split push the bottom lane while trying to set up a steal for Baron. Unfortunately, Cloud 9 was ready and picked off two members of Dignitas lurking near the Baron pit. Imaqtpie was able to grab both the bottom inner and inhibitor turret, but Baron fell to Cloud 9, who then pressured mid lane and attempted to dive on Dignitas. Scarra used his Deathfire Grasp to immediately burn down Balls and force Cloud 9 to retreat. However, Dignitas decided to pursue which was a mistake. Cloud 9 turned on them, got a Death Sentence and kill on Imaqtpie and Crumbzz and then jumped on Scarra for another kill. This allowed them to capture the middle inhibitor as well as clean up the remaining inner turrets in the outside lanes.
Dignitas made a last ditch effort to set up for Baron, but Cloud 9 was ready for them. They were able to jump on some straggling members of Dignitas in their red side jungle and pick up kills on Scarra and Cruzer. This allowed them to chase the remaining members of Dignitas into their base and eventually get the Ace. All that was left was to take down the Nexus in 31 minutes.
Evil Geniuses vs Team Coast
EG: Yasuo, Pantheon, Elise
CST: Kassadin, LeBlanc, Olaf
EG: Sivir (Yellowpete), Annie (Krepo), Kayle (Pobelter), Shyvana (InnoX), Volibear (Snoopeh)
CST: Thresh (Daydreamin), Vi (NintendudeX), Nidalee (Shiphtur), Caitlyn (WizFujiiN), Jax (ZionSpartan)
Both teams decided to start safe with just some dancing in the mid lane by Pobelter and Shiphtur. Pobelter pushed his lane all the way up and was ganked early by NintendudeX, but he was able to avoid the jungler and stay alive without using any summoner spells. In the top lane, ZionSpartan applied constant pressure to InnoX. Eventually he went all in and was able to secure the first blood with a solo kill. At the same time, Snoopeh arrived in the bottom lane and picked up a kill on Daydreamin, then stole the Coast blue buff. Coast responded with a blue steal of its own while EG took that information and picked up the first dragon.
After a short break in the action, Snoopeh appeared in the top lane and was able to pick up a kill on ZionSpartan. EG easily pushed down the top turret to build a small lead. Both teams returned to farming while they wait for the next opportunity to make a play. Eventually the dragon respawned and NintendudeX was able to solo it with no response from EG. In the bottom lane, Daydreamin landed a Death Sentence on Krepo which resulted in a kill for Daydreamin. When Krepo returned to lane, NintendudeX was waiting and Coast picked up another easy kill on the support as well as the bottom turret. Just after that, in the top lane, ZionSpartan was able to execute a solo dive for a kill on InnoX and secured the outer tower. EG responded by picking up a middle outer turret of their own.
Coast set up a split push with ZionSpartan in the top lane and the rest of Coast looking to siege down the middle outer turret. EG, after taking a couple of max range Nidalee spears, decided to engage Coast with an On The Hunt from Yellowpete. NintendudeX immediately thwarted the attempt with a perfectly placed Vault Breaker to Assault and Battery combo which completely disrupted EG. Coast used the counter engage to pick up two kills easily along with the middle outer turret before moving to dragon to secure it as well.
EG set up a one-three-one strategy to push all three lanes. Pobelter got caught in the bottom lane which allowed Coast to capture the bottom inner turret. However, EG captured inner turrets in the mid and top lane in response. ZionSpartan recalled back to the base and then stormed down the mid lane, diving on two retreating members of EG. He was able to easily pick up two kills, which allowed Coast to pick up the first Baron Nashor.
With the buff, Coast pressured EG into a fight in the bottom lane for a kill and then ZionSpartan caught Yellowpete alone in the jungle for another easy kill. Coast tried to push down both the mid and bottom inhibitor turrets. EG engaged four members of Coast in the mid lane, secured a kill on NintendudeX and then picked up a kill on ZionSpartan as he attempted to respond from the bottom lane. This allowed EG to rush the middle lane and secure the inhibitor as well as a dragon.
Another short break in the action allowed both teams to set up for Baron. Two very well placed spears by Shiphtur connected with Snoopeh and forced EG away from the objective. ZionSpartan split pushed the bottom lane and served as bait while his team captured Baron for themselves. Coast returned to the split push strategy with ZionSpartan in the bottom lane and the rest of the team bouncing between mid and top. After a very long siege, Shiphtur managed to land repeated spears on Snoopeh which forced a less than optimal engage by EG. A few more spears were able to take down Snoopeh and Yellowpete. Meanwhile, ZionSpartan was finally able to take down the bottom turret which allowed him to solo kill InnoX. Coast grabbed the top tower and then retreated from the base.
Coast used another bait by ZionSpartan to secure their third Baron of the game. EG used their superior movement speed to create some pressure of their own in the bottom lane and capture the inhibitor turret. Coast tried to respond with another split push, but were unable to get the bottom inhibitor before ZionSpartan fell. This caused Coast to retreat again with no objectives captured. EG pushed down the mid lane and were able to secure the middle inhibitor, but ZionSpartan managed to sneak into EG’s base and grab both the bottom and top inhibitors by himself.
With pressure pushing toward EG, Coast took down their third Baron of the game. ZionSpartan returned to the bottom lane as his team set up in mid. Super minions pushed into the base, which allowed Coast to get the final middle structures. This forced EG to initiate on Coast, but the Baron buffed Team Coast proved too strong and were able to get four kills for none and finally take down the Nexus for the 54 minute victory.
Counter Logic Gaming vs Team Solomid
CLG: Gragas, Kassadin, Sivir
TSM: LeBlanc, Elise, Lee Sin
CLG: Caitlyn (Doublelift), Olaf (dexter), Shyvana (Nien), Lulu (Link), Leona (aphromoo)
TSM: Thresh (Xpecial), Vi (TheOddOne), Dr. Mundo (Dyrus), Lucian (WildTurtle), Nidalee (Bjergsen)
Dyrus and Nien traded skillshots early before minions spawned to try and get an advantage. All three CLG lanes shoved a lot early on which allowed for dexter to counter jungle. CLG was able to deny Bjergsen the second blue buff by forcing TheOddOne to take it with a Smite and save it from being stolen. Dyrus used his Teleport to obtain the first dragon and CLG responded by capturing the top turret. Dyrus returned to the lane and, thinking he was safe, attempted to harass Nien. However, dexter was there to support his top laner and they were able to secure a kill on Dyrus for first blood. TSM picked up the bottom turret to keep the gold even.
At the 15 minute mark, TSM was able to catch aphromoo a little out of position and initiate on CLG four versus three. CLG tried to save their comrade, but were forced to retreat, losing both aphromoo and dexter. The teams regrouped around dragon. CLG pushed down the middle outer turret and then went for the initiation onto TSM. They got the got the engage they wanted, but were not able to quickly kill any of the members of TSM. This allowed TSM to hold strong until Dyrus used his Teleport. Eventually, CLG was able to get two kills, but WildTurtle picked up a triple kill to win the fight for TSM and secure the dragon.
After a couple of minutes, CLG tried to get some pressure on the map by pushing mid and bottom lanes. They attempted to catch TSM off guard near their base between mid and bottom lanes, but TSM was ready and picked up two kills for one off of the engage.
After a short lull, CLG set up for another fight at dragon. Dyrus took down the top lane outer turret and then used Teleport to join the fight. CLG was again able to take the health bars of TSM low, but they were not able to get any kills before TSM turned the damage around on them. CLG lost the fight zero for two and had to give up another dragon to TSM. CLG regrouped and pushed down the mid lane but Nien got caught by a Death Sentence which opened up TSM to fully engage in the fight. CLG was able to put out more damage this time around and picked up two kills. However, Bjergsen landed a spear onto aphromoo for a kill and then Xpecial and Bjergsen chased the three retreating members of CLG. This interference allowed WildTurtle to take the middle inhibitor turret by himself.
With super minions heading into the CLG base, TSM elected to try and secure Baron. Nien was within range to attract attention from TSM which caused them to delay defeating the beast and allowed dexter to rush in and steal the Baron and then start fighting TSM. An extended team fight resulted in a win for CLG, four for three was well as the Baron buff on the two surviving members. Shortly after, a strange engage by dexter on four members of TSM led to a sloppy fight by CLG and another loss.
Nien caught Bjergsen in the bottom lane, which drew the attention of three members of TSM. Meanwhile, CLG went for the middle inhibitor turret, but they weren’t able to get it down fast enough and TSM engaged on the sieging team, picking up three easy kills and allowing them to push all the way down the middle lane to capture the inhibitor. TSM used their advantage to push all the lanes in and force more sloppy engages by dexter from CLG. Eventually they got the kills they needed onto Link and Doublelift which allowed them to capture the Nexus in 42 minutes.
Week 5 saw Team Coast making a statement about their place at the bottom of the league. They were able to secure two victories and move out of the basement. XDG and EG continued to struggle and just couldn’t seem to put a good game together. Curse held their place at the middle of the league.
In the battle at the top of the standings, Dignitas continued to falter with two losses while Cloud 9 and CLG both had one win and one loss, with CLG picking up the win over Cloud 9. However, TSM remained dominant at the top of the league with two victories over CLG and Dignitas. CLG definitely looked strong in both games and showed that they are a team to be watched for as the season continues, while Cloud 9 appeared to be struggling with their inability to win every game easily.
With the season halfway over it appears that a few teams, like XDG, are almost completely out the running. Team Coast and CLG seem to be on the rise while Curse and Dignitas struggle to find consistency. TSM remains the team to beat in North America and it looks like only a few teams are even able to contest them for victories.