UCL Finals: CE vs. FB

Friends and Familiar Faces: Pre-game with First Blood Marauders


     Only a few mere hours stood between a $2,000 prize pool and new UCL champions. Headed into what could be the biggest game of these player’s careers, First Blood Marauders spearheaded it strong, powerful, and surely not going down without a fight. During an interview with the Owner of FB, Luis, I was informed that the Owner of Crowned Esports (FB’s opponents in the finals), and Luis sprouted out into the Esports scene from the same server, at around the same time. As they both developed their organizations, a couple of their players helped out by substituting in some matches when the other organization was in need. After our interview, Luis introduced me to tonight’s starting roster for a brief Q&A session. “Dts” in the mid lane and his team were “feeling confident, [just] business as usual for us.” “Purpose” in the bot lane followed that up with “[CE’s jungler] øbv is probably the player I’m looking at. I’ve played with and against him in soloq and [øbv] literally 1v9s games.” With their heads held high and familiar faces on the other side, FB was ready to suit up, and leave everything on the rift. 


It all matters now: Crowned Esports vs. First Blood Marauders


     Everything is on the line for this Wednesday night series. Remembering all the rough patches, the victories, and progressions, FB and CE are approaching the rift with one common goal: to be crowned as Upsurge Contenders League champions. 


     “Go big or go home” was the motto for this early game. CE’s “I lige moo” on Xayah secures first blood in the bot lane onto the opposing ADC, but he didn’t stop there. They initiate their early game reign by capturing the first turret and heading to the Ocean Drake. CE’s “Arguments” on Azir finds his team on the losing end of a 50/50 fight to contest the Drake. Courageously, he Shurima Shuffles into the heart of the fight, winning back the fight for his team. He realizes the tremendous lead he’s acquired with help from his team, yet it isn’t enough. “Arguments” creates pressure with his jungler, “øbv”, by dropping the rift herald and racking in a double kill, shying away from the mid-game. Despite all of CE’s gold and glory, it isn’t all one-sided. FB shuts down CE’s ADC, adding a small bit of gold to their pockets. With hopes still high, and momentum still moving, CE looks to gain vision control over Baron Buff, but FB is holding their ground. Despite their efforts, CE still manages to obtain the Buff, and takes one final triple kill to end game one at 24 minutes. 

     CE continues their rhythm into the second game of the night by taking a delayed first blood on the top lane. FB is patient, yet anxious to get some sort of lead over their adversaries. A 3 for 2 trade in favor of FB grants their wishes, setting them up with a slight gold lead over CE. Catching up, CE secures a Cloud Drake while FB is busy picking away at the first turret in the top lane. Unfortunately for FB, CE starts to stack up a lead once again. One kill shy of an ace, CE picks up their crown and races the death timers as they bolt towards the Baron Pit. “FB Mike” is able to get to the Pit in the nick of time, but fails in his attempt to contest. A 5 on 5 team fight on the outskirts of FB’s inhibitor turrets gives CE’s “I lige moo” on Xayah a double kill, opening access to the inhibitors and leading to an ave shortly following. However, CE is still scrambling to gather all of their marbles, and is forced to quickly reset, leaving the enemy nexus untouched. CE wastes no time and picks up right where they left off, nailing two more kills and closing game two at 27 minutes. 


     Heading into game three, Crowned Esports is only one more game away from being the UCL champions. With intensity higher than ever before, CE recalibrates and plans what tactics they’re using to finish off the series. As their gears are turning, FB is busy on the rift and is refusing to go down without a fight. FB’s “Btang” on Lulu and “Purpose” on Vayne uses their synergy to lock in first blood and get the game going for their team. As a team, FB moves their focus down bot side to attempt and control the bottom half of the map, and they did. An Infernal Drake spawns, and both teams make a beeline towards the Pit. Using their pressure and gold leads, FB is able to win a 3 for 0 trade and take down the Infernal Drake. Kills, objectives, kills, seems to be the formula for First Blood Marauders and it appears to be paying off. Another 1 for 3 trade in favor of FB leaves “Purpose” on Vayne with a double kill, and Ocean Drake, and one hell of a lead going into the mid-game. CE is frantically searching for a way back into the game, but not even Rift Herald and first turret gold is helping. On their ball, FB continues to dominate objectives across the map. Making a huge play at the Baron Buff, FB is able to rack in three more kills under their belts and a mountain drake, knocking off CE’s crown, ending the game at 21 minutes.


     Not one soul knows what to expect in game four. After such a strong match, the winner is unclear. The series record says 2-1, but this isn’t over yet. CE gets their realities checked, and gets right back on their A-game. CE takes the first blood this early game, leading off with a nearly flawless turret dive. Their successful aggressive is just enough to sneak up on their adversaries. Winning globally, CE takes the Ocean Drake and uses the Rift Herald to obtain the first turret, heading into mid-game on top. At this point, FB is desperately looking to sliver their way back into the match by capturing a few of CE’s bounties, but it’s too late. CE’s “Arguments” on Gragas continues to make ridiculous plays, leading to a 6/0/1 KD, carrying a 700 gold bounty over his head before late-game hits. Heading towards the Baron Buff, CE’s “øbv” on Hecarim plows his way through FB, setting up a triple kill for his ADC and putting the cherry on top by finishing with an ace. CE exerts all of their momentum and melts down the Buff. CE’s leads are so unbearable, they’re denying any and all jungle camps. Any time FB tries to set foot in their jungle, they aren’t returned alive. Moving closer to ending the series, CE takes two more double kills, an ace, and clears their path into FB’s homebase. With a 15,000 gold lead and a 9 turrets over FB, CE prys open the nexus to be crowned the Summer 2019 Upsurge Contenders League champions!

   Where trash talk meets victory: The Post-Game Interview with Crowned Esports

     After Crowned Esports’s great success this season, it definitely didn’t come without some trash talking. When I had the opportunity to meet with Crowned Esports’s “øbv” in Week 3 of the regular UCL season, he refused to say any words but “freelo” and “I’ll take my interview after the UCL Finals” but for this interview, he brought his friends too. Fresh off the UCL victory, I met with all of the players who played on the rift tonight, including their organization owner, Daye. “[Crowned Esports] went in with no preparation, but [we] knew the outcome” said Warcry, CE’s beloved support. Despite the lack of formal preparation, not one person on the roster tonight lacked confidence on the rift. The infamous “øbv” in the jungle tells me that “confidence is [the] big key.” Crowned Esports’s “Arguments” asked if they he give some shoutouts to his friends watching, and how could you say no to the new UCL champion? “Shoutout to my boys Maloy, Luckster, Cogi, and Excodar”  


     A personal note: thank you to everyone who reads and supports these articles. If you see any of these players around, feel free to give them a pat on the back and I’ll see you all next season. This is Elle Karff, signing off for the Summer 2019 Upsurge Contenders League split. Thank you! 


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