EG shock Heroic to start run through BLAST Spring Groups
A vintage performance from Vincent "Brehze" Cayonte in the third and final map proved to be the difference maker in Evil Geniuses' upset victory.
Evil Geniuses kicked off the action at BLAST Premier Spring Groups with a shock 2-1 victory over Heroic. The international quintet, who enter the tournament ranked outside of the top 30 on the world ranking, conceded Inferno (7-16), before answering back with hard-fought and full-distance 16-14 scorelines on the newly updated Ancient and Overpass.
Evil Geniuses now advance to the Group A Upper Final in Denmark and will face off against the eventual winner of the series between Vitality and Astralis. Jerric "wiz" Jiang had a promising start to life amongst the main roster, putting up a 1.12 rating in the deciding victory on Overpass.
Heroic fall down to the lower bracket in Copenhagen, and now sit just one loss away from being cast straight down to the do-or-die Knockout Stage. One of few positive takeaways from the world's No. 1 team and BLAST Premier Fall Final winners comes in the form of Martin "stavn" Lund, who ended his first series back in the action with a healthy 1.17 rating.
Heroic started Evil Geniuses' pick of Inferno in red-hot form, a flawless pistol-round lockdown of the B site by Heroic foreshadowing what was to come, with the Danes jumping out to an overpowering 6-3 lead to get their time on the defence going. Heroic continued to lay down the law as the half progressed, well-executed retakes and unrelenting aggression leaving Evil Geniuses little room to work with as the Danish quintet swiftly reached double digits with two rounds to spare, 10-3. Evil Geniuses weren't down and out despite the lopsided deficit, and a crucial two-kill opener by Brehze in the final round of the half provided the North American ensemble with some respite as they clawed their way back to a more manageable 4-11 showing by the side swap.
Heroic's dominance in the server continued to be felt at the onset of the second half, thorough probing of the two bombsites fueling a Danish sprint towards match point, 15-4. An overzealous Heroic gifted wiz a 1vs3 clutch in his debut to keep his new side in the game a little while longer, but this just served to prolong the suffering. Heroic soon stabilised to steal the map away 16-7 and go up 1-0 in the series, whilst also ending their eight-map loss streak on Inferno in the process.
Strong fragging from Jadan "HexT" Postma, one of Evil Geniuses' Blueprint graduates, enabled the American-majority composition to sit in the driver's seat and go on a six-round streak at the outset of Ancient. Evil Geniuses' stalwart defensive wall showed few signs of crumbling as the half entered its dying stages, an uncharacteristically disjointed Heroic contrasted with a cohesive and well-oiled Evil Geniuses giving way to an 11-4 scoreline in favour of the North American outfit by the interval. Whilst Evil Geniuses had HexT to thank for their successes in the opening phase of play, the remainder of their good fortunes came as a result of Timothy "autimatic" Ta's prowess, who topped the scoreboard with 17 kills at the switch.
The tides turned once the action resumed, with a complete shutdown of the A bombsite in the pistol round being the catalyst in getting Heroic's comeback attempt underway. Multi-kill rounds from René "TeSeS" Madsen and stavn were the rocket fuel in helping the Danes' recovery really gain steam, and it didn't take long for the world's No. 1 team to bring the scoreline all the way back to a dead-even 11-11 stalemate. Back-to-back fast hits of the B site inched the Sanzhar "neaLaN" Iskhakov-led squad ever close to match point and, despite Heroic's best efforts, Evil Geniuses had found the winning formula, eventually going on to eke out the win after all 30 rounds were played and forcing a trip to the deciding map of Overpass.
Evil Geniuses continue to be a formidable opponent for the BLAST Premier Fall Final champions, with the North American outfit coming out on top in a number of high-pressure and chaotic rounds to boast an early 4-0 advantage on the T-side. Heroic's saving grace came in the form of Casper "cadiaN" Møller, who took it upon himself to lead from the front and sport 10 kills to nullify Evil Geniuses' initial gains and once again bring things level pegging, 5-5. A masterful display of expert rotations and perfectly scripted executes got the wind back in Evil Geniuses' sails, though, who turned the game back on its head and sat on a three-round buffer by the end of their attacking effort.
Heroic pulled off a 2vs4 recovery in the pistol round to kick off their time on the offense, the Danish quintet snowballing this new-found grip on the economy as they leapfrogged their way to an 11-10 lead. The back-and-forth nature of the game reared its head once more, with it now being Evil Geniuses' turn to take the reins as they forced Heroic down to pistols on their way to a 14-13 advantage. Heroic were given one last chance thanks to an Evil Geniuses fumble with the defuse in round 29, but the North American roster were able to shake it off, gunning down cadiaN in a 2vs1 post-plant to upset the world's No. 1 team and advance to the Upper Final in Copenhagen.
|Heroic||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|61 - 51||+10||75.5||1.22|
|65 - 53||+12||86.5||1.17|
|57 - 48||+9||73.0||1.07|
|50 - 52||-2||73.5||1.05|
|55 - 52||+3||72.3||1.03|
|Evil Geniuses||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|58 - 58||0||81.2||1.08|
|54 - 58||-4||75.3||0.99|
|50 - 53||-3||58.6||0.98|
|51 - 61||-10||68.9||0.94|
|42 - 61||-19||62.7||0.84|