Returning to normal programming after a frenetic but well-received day one of play cut down 16 teams to eight, the second day of the Allied Esports Minor saw the four quarter-final matches play out to much fanfare.
Here’s a roundup of all the action if you missed any.
Maps: Villa (7-5), Coastline (7-3), Clubhouse (Not Played)
Secret: LeonGids, meepeY, Elemzje, Fonkers, Ferral
T1: Faallz, SkaDinha, LuKid, rhZ, reduct
First up was the match between former Pro League side Team Secret and former Challenger League side Team oNe. After a terrible Season 9 of the Pro League that saw them relegated, Secret were looking good to make amends today after a scintillating run yesterday. Team oNe, meanwhile, had a lot more of a struggle yesterday, but had a flawless Season 9 in the Challenger League.
Starting off on Villa, Team oNe got away well, drawing first blood and then going on to take their defensive half 4-2. However, Secret were far from out, especially given the fact that Villa still seems to be a largely defender-sided map. Free from their imperfect attacks, Secret went on to completely arrest Team oNe’s momentum by putting four unanswered rounds on the board. The Brazilians managed to finally break the streak to get their fifth, but fell on the final round of regulation time and conceded the first map to their European opponents.
Moving onto Coastline, Team oNe once again started well, winning a tight first round that came down to the final seconds. Team Secret too followed the pattern and responded well, but this time it was them winning the first half with a 4-2 scoreline. However, there was no defensive dominance to save Team oNe here, and while they got the first round after the role swap, it would be Secret booking their berth in the semi-finals.
Maps: Oregon (7-4), Villa (7-3), Border (Not Played)
Liquid: NESKWGA, psk1, xS3xycake, HSnamuringa, Paluh
SSG: Bosco, Chala, Fultz, Rampy, ThinkingNade
Both Team Liquid and Spacestation Gaming (SSG) came into this tournament after decent but ultimately unsatisfying Pro League campaigns that saw them finish third and fifth, respectively. Both teams also featured new recruits, with the Latin Americans forced into a change, bringing in João “HSnamuringa” Deam after Leo “ziGueira” Duarte retired, while the North Americans had very much voluntarily swapped Bryan “Bryan” Agema in favour of Alec “Fultz” Fultz.
At first, it seemed that Liquid simply would have no opposition. One round won turned to two, to three, and eventually to six, as they pulled off a flawless attacking half. However, the drama was just beginning on Oregon, as SSG started reeling rounds of their own. Getting four rounds back was an excellent achievement, but six proved to be just too tall an order as Liquid prevailed thanks to a big contribution from NESK to take the first map.
On Villa, though, it was SSG that started well, winning three rounds on the trot before winning the defensive half 4-2. Once again, though, Villa’s defensive dominance reared its head. Liquid pulled off a flawless defensive masterclass, winning all five rounds required to win the map and set up a semi-final meeting with Team Secret.
Maps: Clubhouse (8-6), Border (7-3), Coastline (Not Played)
LeStream: Hicks, Risze, Korey, Alphama, AceeZ
Rogue: Slashug, VertcL, Shuttle, Easilyy, Ecl9pse
After a very disappointing Season 9 of the Pro League, Rogue seemed to be following in Team Secret’s steps, making a strong recovery here in Las Vegas after a flawless first day. LeStream Esport (LSE), on the other hand, came into the tournament off the back of yet another poor offline event followed by the loss of star player Aleksi "UUNO" Työppönen, who was then replaced by Lukas “Korey” Zwingmann.
The North Americans started off brightly, securing three back-to-back round wins on defense, and then winning the half 4-2 after a razor-thin margined 1v1 LeStream clutch prevented it from being 5-1. LeStream pulled it back to 4-4, but Rogue were determined not to let the momentum build and began trading rounds back-and-forth, pushing the game to overtime where the Europeans rallied and closed things out 8-6.
On Border, Rogue started well yet again, winning the first two rounds, but were quickly caught by LeStream, and so began the back-and-forth dance. However, when Rogue pulled away by two rounds, going up 5-3, it was down to Maurice "AceeZ" Erkelenz to clutch things out to prevent the map from slipping out of LSE’s grasp. That was enough to shift the perennial LAN underperformers into gear, and they did not let a single round slip after that, winning the series 2-0.
Maps: Clubhouse (5-7), Coastline (7-4), Consulate (7-5)
Chaos: Vitoline, Redgroove, Kripps, Secretly, Renuilz
Rogue: Psycho, kamikaze, pino, muuzi, JULIO
Ninjas in Pyjamas (NiP) and Chaos both had a lot to prove in Las Vegas, coming into this match. Both had a Pro League season that they would have wanted more from, and would very badly wanted to be at Milan. More interestingly, this would be the first international LAN event for both teams in a while -- NiP had last featured at the Six Invitational in February, while Chaos had featured only at DreamHack Winter in December last year.
Starting on Clubhouse, both teams looked incredibly well-matched and kept trading rounds back-to-back. Try as they might, neither could shake the other off -- that is until the twelfth round. Already on match point, NiP pulled off a masterful defense to stave off overtime, and secure the map in the bag by a score of 7-5.
NiP got things underway on Coastline with a first-round victory, and actually established a 3-1 lead, but Chaos were determined to make it past the Brazilians and suddenly turned on the style, securing five unanswered rounds to get to match point -- one round away from making this the only game to go to a third map. Desperate to prevent that, NiP did answer back with one round of their own, but that was all else they would get, and Chaos kept their Raleigh Major dreams alive.
This time, Chaos drew first blood, but as had been proven across the two previous maps, both teams were separated by very little. Up 3-2, Chaos were a mere 0.044 seconds -- quite possibly the smallest margin we have seen since the introduction of the defuser timer -- from winning the half, but a more than opportune firebolt from JULIO and a follow-up kill saw NiP win the sixth round. Back-and-forth went things again as both teams sat with five rounds on the board, but it was Chaos that pulled away when it was needed, and secured two rounds in a row to go up against fellow European team LeStream Esport in the semi-finals.
Be sure to catch the continuation of the Allied Esports Minor later as the playoffs begin at 12:10 AM PDT (GMT-7), to see which of the three teams in contention secure the much-coveted ticket to the Raleigh Major in August.