Liquid outplay SK 2-1; to semifinals
Liquid, between a rock and a hard place after losing Mirage, and facing four match points in favor of SK on Cobblestone, were able to bring it back after overtime and win on Inferno, the third map, for a spot in the semis.
A beautiful pistol round by Liquid forcing early rotations from SK gave them the first round attacking on Mirage as they were able to plant on B and eliminate the Brazilians trying to retake in a 3vs4. After losing the two anti-ecos SK were finally able to take the first gun round, taking Liquid players down left and right on mid thanks to Fernando "fer" Alvarenga and Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo’s aggression. Quickly, the match was at a draw and Liquid on an eco. Thanks to a 2vs4 by Nick "nitr0" Cannella and FalleN.
A triple by Epitacio "TACO" de Melo to open up the round with the AWP on B gave SK the 5vs4 lead, which was then extended after an anti-eco on A. Down 4-7, Liquid were able to get within one after winning some methodic rounds, and eventually tie it, 7-7, against an eco. SK were then able to close out the half, up by just a round going into the pause.
The second half started with SK increasing their lead after winning the pistol round, but Liquid’s forcebuy kept them within one. The rounds jumped back-and-forth as both teams had weak buys and were trying to come out on top in the economic game early in the second half. SK then started to run away with it, taking the 12-8 lead and then winning a 2vs3 as Marcelo "coldzera" David caught two players rotating and a third after Ricardo "boltz" Prass planted the bomb. The Brazilian team, with a solid T-side, were then able to close the map out, 16-9.
The first round on Cobblestone had Liquid run deep down mid, trying to run on A, but a crossfire by fer and coldzera stopped them in their tracks. Having planted on the first round before perishing, Liquid had AKs on the third round, but with very limited utility. The AKs proved too much for SK’s SMGs, and Liquid won after playing a slow methodical round on A. After a game of tug-o-war, it was SK that was able to take control, winning four rounds in a row for a 7-4 lead, and closed out the half giving up just one more round, 10-5.
fer got four kills in the second pistol round to give SK even more of an edge going into the attacking side. Liquid didn’t throw the towel, though, and won the forcebuy. The Brazilian side lost three rounds in a row, but were then able to win a round as the bomb was well defended and exploded in a B play for a 12-8 lead. Jonathan "EliGE" Jablonowski got a very important triple the following round, as Liquid would have had to go on an eco were they to lose the round. The Brazilian side made it to match point, but Liquid didn’t give up and with four back-to-back rounds brought it to overtime.
Both teams split the first two rounds of overtime, but it was finally SK that took the lead going into the half after a beautiful execute on B. The first round of the second half went the way of SK, who got on match point, as coldzera and boltz were able to win the 2vs1 against nitr0. Yet again, Liquid strook back and pushed it to a second overtime. Up 19-18, Keith "NAF" Markovic won a great 1vs2 to further extend his team’s lead. After the switch, SK took the first round for a 20-20 scoreline, but it was finally Liquid who ground out the half, winning two rounds in a row for a 22-20 map win.
Liquid kicked off the first map getting a three round cushion, but SK, on the CT side, didn’t let their rivals expand on that winning the first gun round. Liquid then reset the Brazilians, forcing SK on a low-economy buy. Quickly, Liquid took full control of the maps, constantly forcing SK to eco and have bad buys, and took the 7-1 lead early in the map. Round after round, Liquid was able to sneak into bomb sites, particularly exploiting B, to keep their streak going.
A great half by Liquid gave them a 13 round lead going into the second half, but weren’t able to close it out of the gate as SK won the second pistol round. A huge round by Lucas "steel" Lopes with a triple through smoke on B and killing the last in a 1vs1 got Liquid on map and match point. SK stayed in the match, winning the following round and the anti-eco after, but at 15-7, it was too little, too late, as Liquid stopped an A execute to close it out, 16-7, to make it to the next round.
K - D
Keith 'NAF' MarkovicNAF
68 - 62
Nick 'nitr0' Cannellanitr0
66 - 62
Russel 'Twistzz' Van DulkenTwistzz
62 - 57
Jonathan 'EliGE' JablonowskiEliGE
66 - 57
Lucas 'steel' Lopessteel
49 - 61