A strong showing from Liquid in the domestic matchup against Evil Geniuses confirmed the status of Jake “Stewie2K” Yip and co. as the best in their region. While both maps featured some back-and-forth and plenty of force-buy success, Liquid took the series fairly comfortably, 2-0, to ensure a place in the playoffs.
In the post-match interview, Stewie2K admitted that his team was “a little scared that we weren’t prepared enough” for the event after going back to North America, but they feel great after their showings so far. When asked about his individual step up (1.14 rating at EPL S13), the 23-year-old said that he feels a lot more confident at the moment, especially with Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo taking over the calling which allowed him to go back to his “natural role”.
In terms of Group D at ESL Pro League, this result means that Astralis, Virtus.pro, and Liquid are locked in for the playoffs, while fnatic, Endpoint, and Evil Geniuses are out. The first place in the group will be decided on Monday. Astralis are in control of their destiny, as a win over eliminated fnatic will see them stay on top, but in case of an upset from the Swedes, the winner of Virtus.pro – Liquid will claim the #1 slot.
The series started on Inferno, where Liquid picked up five in a row early on the CT side to recover from the second-round anti-force loss. The momentum was snatched back by Evil Geniuses after a triple from Tsvetelin “CeRq” Dimitrov, that broke their opponent’s money. The Bulgarian was causing issues for Liquid, seeing Peter “stanislaw” Jarguz and co. finishing their offensive half just one round behind. The game became chaotic after the switch, force buys were traded back and forth throughout, but that ended up favoring Liquid on the T side, who closed it out 16-11.
Liquid moved ahead early on the offense of Overpass, overcoming some anti-force issues to claim a 7-2 lead following FalleN‘s 1v2 clutch. That allowed Stewie2K‘s team to gain an economic advantage, which they held for the rest of the half despite some heroics from Vincent “Brehze” Cayonte. With 10 rounds for the half, Liquid were looking strong to finish off the game. In the second half, they finally thwarted Evil Geniuses‘ force buys, taking their map pick 16-10 with the help of an in-form Jonathan “EliGE” Jablonowski (1.58 Rating).