IEM Chicago's second semi-final began on Liquid's pick, Inferno, where the North American side kicked off the match with a 5-2 lead and looked to establish a great half after resetting their opponents.
However, a full eco win on the back of Nikola "NiKo" Kovač's quad-kill and a 1v1 clutch on the B bombsite, where the European mixture decided to stack five players, breathed life into FaZe, who went on to win the next six rounds courtesy of more big plays from the Bosnian.
That set the half to a 9-6 scoreline in favor of Finn "karrigan" Andersen & co., who added a pistol round win on top and rallied to a 13-6 lead. A smart flank from Epitacio "TACO" de Melo gave him a triple and one round to Liquid, but the effort was in vain as FaZe were quickly back to winning ways and secured the first map at 16-7.
Mirage followed as FaZe's choice, but it was Liquid who grabbed early control and never let go. With a pistol round in the bag, they racked up a 6-0 lead before their opponents replied with a single round, as NiKo clutched another 1v1 in a pistol buy.
Nick "nitr0" Cannella & co. reset FaZe immediately, however, and continued their run of domination on the CT side. The whole team was firing on all cylinders and there was nothing NiKo's team could do to stop it, as even a 3v5 situation went the way of Liquid, who decided to stack the B bombsite in that scenario. Five rounds later, the home team came out victorious at 16-1 to equalize the series.
Cache was left to decide it all and Liquid just picked up where they left off on Mirage. On the favored Terrorist side, they began to walk over FaZe after resetting them in the fifth round, with Keith "NAF" Markovic and nitr0 each clutching a 1v2 on the way to a 9-1 lead.
The European side could only win two rounds before the half ended, with Olof "olofmeister" Kajbjer and Håvard "rain" Nygaard securing one each, and FaZe had a tall task ahead of them given a 3-12 halftime score. Too tall of a task, as it turned out, as despite winning the pistol round, FaZe went down 4-16, with Liquid replying with just Deagles in the second round and running away with the remainder to secure the grand final spot.
|FaZe||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|Nikola 'NiKo' KovačNiKo||49 - 39||+10||85.5||1.18|
|Olof 'olofmeister' Kajbjerolofmeister||35 - 44||-9||64.9||0.83|
|Finn 'karrigan' Andersenkarrigan||35 - 50||-15||66.7||0.78|
|Ladislav 'GuardiaN' KovácsGuardiaN||29 - 43||-14||51.6||0.70|
|Håvard 'rain' Nygaardrain||22 - 44||-22||53.6||0.61|