SK Gaming came from behind to defeat FaZe on three maps and win the ECS Season 3 title.
The series began on SK's map pick, Mirage, but the early stages would have suggested otherwise as FaZe cruised to a 10-2 lead. It all began with an A push from the European team in the pistol round, with Nikola "NiKo" Kovač picking up three stunning headshots.
The first full gun round also went FaZe's way, courtesy of a quad kill from Håvard "rain" Nygaard, but SK rallied back on a force buy. FaZe responded by taking the next round, breaking SK's economy by denying the Brazilians the chance to save weapons.
SK would go on to take a second round, thanks to a quad kill from João "felps" Vasconcellos, but once again they were unable to capitalise on that. With the scoreline 10-2, the Brazilians finally managed to string rounds together, winning the final three rounds of the half to keep their hopes alive.
Fernando "fer" Alvarenga opened up the second half with an entry frag on A before picking up three more frags near the jungle area. The Brazilians continued amassing rounds and eventually restored parity at 11-11.
It looked like FaZe had no response to SK's pace, but then the game took a turn. With a triple kill on B, Fabien "kioShiMa" Fiey put FaZe back in the lead, with rain following that up with a trio of kills of his own on the other site. SK still called a timeout in an attempt to halt FaZe's momentum, but the damage was done: the European team would go on to win the next three rounds in convincing fashion to lock down the map, 16-11.
The next map, Inferno, began with a flawless B execute from FaZe, who also picked up both anti-eco rounds. After losing the first gun round, FaZe restored a three-round lead with an A execute, but then they were torn apart on their way to B, where Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo secured three frags with the AWP.
What followed was a very dominant period from FaZe, who won seven of the next nine rounds, with fer ending the half on 21 frags.
FalleN went huge in the pistol round as Terrorists, picking up an ace, but it was all for naught as he could not kill the defuser on time in a 1v2 situation. SK hit back on a force buy, which propelled them into a 12-7 lead.
FaZe then tightened up their defence, winning five of the next six rounds to bring the deficit to a minimum. With a force buy, SK got their 14th round of the game and left FaZe strapped for cash. It looked like the map was about to come to an end, but the game took yet another surprising twist as FaZe pulled one back with a B stack on eco.
The European team went on to reach match point but they could not deal the finishing blow, wasting a 4v2 advantage in the final round to let the game go to overtime, in which SK would secure the win with a flawless CT display.
The final map of the series was Train, where the first-half was a one-sided affair from the get-go. SK jumped out to a commanding 11-0 lead as FaZe simply could not find a way through the brick wall that was the Brazilians' defence.
After calling a timeout, FaZe finally got a round on the board in a force-buy, and they followed that up with a gun round thanks to three quick kills from Aleksi "allu" Jalli with an AWP. But that was as far as they would go as SK bagged the final two rounds of the half to take a 13-2 half-time lead.
And that was when insanity began. FaZe put on a near-flawless display on the CT side, giving SK Gaming very little room to operate. Once again, the European team reached match point, only to be caught out in the final round.
The first half of overtime ended with FaZe taking two rounds. The second half went down to the wire, with SK securing three straight rounds to seal a 19-17 victory.
|FaZe||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|Nikola 'NiKo' KovačNiKo||82 - 72||+10||84.9||1.19|
|Aleksi 'allu' Jalliallu||66 - 64||+2||69.9||1.01|
|Fabien 'kioShiMa' FieykioShiMa||65 - 63||+2||74.2||1.01|
|Håvard 'rain' Nygaardrain||61 - 68||-7||70.1||0.95|
|Finn 'karrigan' Andersenkarrigan||50 - 69||-19||69.0||0.87|
|SK||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|Fernando 'fer' Alvarengafer||87 - 65||+22||90.3||1.32|
|Gabriel 'FalleN' ToledoFalleN||62 - 65||-3||68.4||1.03|
|João 'felps' Vasconcellosfelps||70 - 73||-3||79.5||1.00|
|Marcelo 'coldzera' Davidcoldzera||67 - 58||+9||63.9||1.00|
|Epitacio 'TACO' de MeloTACO||49 - 64||-15||61.7||0.87|
ECS Season 3 Finals standings: