NiP survive elimination, send AVANGAR packing in Arlington
NiP and AVANGAR were the first two sides in Texas to face one another with elimination on the line, as both teams sustained losses in their opening maps against Liquid and Evil Geniuses, respectively. Cornered, the Kazakhstani and Swedish rosters fought with fervour, looking to extend their stay in Arlington by outsmarting their opponents on Train, Overpass and, possibly, Mirage.
AVANGAR kicked off to a comfortable start on the CT side of Train, as Dzhami "Jame" Ali and company cruised to an immediate 5-0 lead off the back of a successful B site post-plant in the first pistol round. Efforts from Simon "twist" Eliasson and Nicolas "Plopski" Gonzalez Zamora flipped the tables, and after consecutive successes, the Swedes shredded the steadily developing finances of their adversaries, creating space for an equaliser. Contrary to their dominant early stint, the defence was only able to add an additional two rounds to their initial half tally, concluding with a 7-8 deficit.
A pistol round ace from Alexey "qikert" Golubev on the T side reignited AVANGAR's chances of regaining momentum, but they were instantly doused by a successful second-round forcebuy from NiP. Following the early turbulence, the Swedes found footing that extended their score position to double digits, just three rounds short of closing their opponents' map pick. The AVANGAR offensive fiercely contested towards the latter stages of the map, nearly breaking the CT economy at a pivotal moment, but a shortfall in a messy B site post-plant meant map point for NiP. Shortly after, Jonas "Lekr0" Olofsson ensured a 1-0 map record with a Krieg triple kill in a 2v4 situation.
NiP's pick, Overpass, saw the Swedes commence on the defence. A pistol round victory was secured, and despite their momentum being upset by rifles down the line, the squad persisted to a convincing 6-1 early lead. AVANGAR were once more able to claw a round in their favour, but this proved to be the sole additional success they would produce over the entire remainder of their T half. A slow playstyle coupled with a cattish approach to breaches was exploited by NiP, who confidently ground their opponents into a 13-2 situation.
Sanjar "SANJI" Kuliev served as his team's much-needed pick-me-up on the CT side, as the Azerbaijani player ensured the second pistol round with a 1v3 P2000 clutch. Inspired, AVANGAR proceeded to close out rounds, tripling their aggregate scoreline as a result, but a brisk B hit from NiP proved productive, cutting the CT's string short. Keeping things simple, the offense opted for another B hit, dispatching all defending CTs upon entry, securing map and series point off the back of this success. Faced with financial ruin, four pistols and a Scout were insufficient in stopping the NiP onslaught, as AVANGAR accepted elimination with a 0-2 series score.
|AVANGAR||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|Alexey 'qikert' Golubevqikert||36 - 39||-3||92.1||1.05|
|Dzhami 'Jame' AliJame||36 - 34||+2||74.7||1.01|
|Sanjar 'SANJI' KulievSANJI||30 - 39||-9||68.5||0.91|
|Timur 'buster' Tulepovbuster||27 - 38||-11||59.3||0.82|
|Dauren 'AdreN' KystaubayevAdreN||21 - 37||-16||50.6||0.66|