Welcome to the High Score Esports News Weekly Round-Up!
Each week, High Score updates you on the week that was in esports. Catch up on the coolest matches, the biggest battles, and the latest news right here, all in easy to digest word bites! Read on friends and stay in the know!
Team USA Found The Way To Overwatch History At BlizzCon
Along with something slightly resembling an apology and all the new game news, BlizzCon also held the Overwatch World Cup, and if you couldn’t figure it out from the headline just above, Team USA was the big winner. For three years, South Korea won the Overwatch World Cup, and for three years, The US was knocked out of competition pretty early. But this year… this year was like a Rocky movie, only with less punching and more mouse clicking.
Team USA went 18-1 on maps and didn’t suffer a single series loss. The one map they lost was to South Korea in the semi-finals, but Team USA made up for it in the grand finals by taking down the reigning champions 3-0. Overwatch World Cup MVP Jay “Sinatraa” Won upset Han Solo when he got cocky after the grand final, saying “Well, we actually thought we’re gonna 3-0 everyone, but we dropped a map to Korea.”
Team USA and Houston Outlaws support Shane “Rawkus” Flaherty took a more humble approach, saying “Third time’s the charm, and everyone works super hard. It feels so good actually finally do that. Like, I don’t, I don’t really have words to really explain how I feel right now. But it was something that I wanted to do no matter what.”
Liooon Makes History Of Her Own
Team USA weren’t the only history makers at BlizzCon. Xiaomeng “Liooon” Li became the first woman to win any World Championship at BlizzCon. To be frank, Liooon didn’t just win the Hearthstone World Championship, she dominated it by going undefeated in the tournament.
After her decisive victory against Brian “bloodyface” Eason in the grand finals, an emotional Liooon spoke to the cheering crowd.
“Two years ago, I remember I was competing in a huge tournament. I was waiting in line for signups. And there was this guy telling me, ‘You’re a girl. You should not be waiting in line here. It’s not for you.’ And now today, I am here, with all this support from the fans.
“I want to say to all the girls out there who have a dream for esports, for competition, for glory: If you want to do it, and you believe in yourself, you should just forget your gender and go for it.”
StarCraft Goes Dark
While South Korea lost its first Overwatch World Cup ever to Team USA (U!S!A! U!S!A!) the country constantly worried about the irrational choices of their northern neighbors didn’t go home emptyhanded thanks to Park “Dark” Ryung Woo.
In truth, Dark bringing the StarCraft World Cup back to South Korea is a bigger deal to the country than losing Overwatch. Sure, dominating Overwatch is fun and all for the esports fans in South Korea, but StarCraft is a big big deal there. When Finnish player Joona “Serral” Sotala won the StarCraft World Cup last year, defeating Kim “Stats” Dae Yeob, it was the first time South Korea had lost the World Cup for the game. StarCraft is huge in South Korea, and the loss last year was horrifying to the country.
But that loss surely made this year’s victory that much sweeter.
League Of Legends Created A New Legend In The Semi-Finals
Spectators packed the Palacio Vistalegre in Madrid for what everyone figured would be a great match between G2 Esports and SK Telecom T1. After all, SK Telecom T1 has the best record in the 9-year history of the LCS – including winning the World Championship three times in the last seven years – and G2 is the home team (well, they’re based in Germany, but they are a Spanish team). Add to it that G2 was just two series victories away from making history by being the first team in LoL to win every major competition they competed in during a calendar year, and you had lots of pressure on both teams.
The battle between the two teams went four games, with both G2 and SKT having moments to show off just how great they are. Thanks to jungler Kim “Clid” Tae-min and top laner Kim “Khan” Dong-ha, SKT was consistently able to take the lead in each game, but G2 wasn’t about to lie down and let SKT roll over them. The opening leads would quickly vanish as G2 battled back each and every time.
G2 would force SKT to use a summoner in skirmishes, or pick off a main target in a moment when SKT was scattered, and suddenly, SKT’s lead was questionable. SKT’s mid laner Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok, who we wrote about last week, made a few big mistakes during the day that cost SKT dearly.
As the series went on, G2 stopped needing to come from behind, as the pressure proved too much for SKT. In the end, G2 Esports defeated SK Telecom T1 3-1 and moved on to the grand finals, which will go down on November 10. G2 will face off against FunPlus Phoenix in the hopes of continuing their amazing run for the year.
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