The first three days of play in ESEA Premier Season 39 Relegation has come to a close, seeing the first ESL Challenger League spot up for grabs be taken by Fragadelphia 16: Denver winners Strife, whilst former ESEA Premier sides voLante and Northern Forces have bowed out in joint last place.
The first round matchups saw Strife narrowly move past Valors, seeing a grueling three-map series be required to secure the ESEA Premier side’s victory whilst Third Impact traded maps with Northern Forces before dismantling them 16-7 in the deciding map. On the other side of the bracket, voLante fell at the hands of ESEA Advanced roster Brazen 2-0 following a strong performance from Dacoda "pengnax" St Louis while Detonate looked strong in their showing versus X13, dispatching of their opponents 2-0 in a relatively one-sided affair to progress in the event.
In the upper bracket semi-finals, Strife quickly regained their composure to secure a convincing 2-0 domination over Third Impact with 16-2 and 16-12 victories on Mirage and Overpass, respectively. Meanwhile, Detonate repeated their success from the first round to move past Brazen 2-0 after two 16-13 victories on Ancient and Inferno, setting up an Upper Finals matchup versus the aforementioned Strife.
Down in the lower bracket, a stellar performance from Paul "aris" Wilson allowed X13 to complete the reverse sweep versus voLante to steal the series 2-1 and see the latter be the first side to suffer relegation down to ESEA Advanced Season 40. Elsewhere, Valors proved to be too much to handle for Northern Forces, with Saad "Pluto" Siraj continuing to post strong showings, as the ESEA Advanced squad deconstructed their foes 16-9 and 16-6 on Overpass and Nuke, making Northern Forces the second squad to be relegated.
The lower bracket semi-final bore witness to an all ESEA Advanced Season 39 affair, with the first matchup seeing the previously mentioned Valors take on Brazen. Although the latter side did get off to a strong start on their pick of Ancient with a 16-8 scoreline, Valors managed to narrowly clinch Nuke back 16-14 to force a decider map to settle the series. The third and final map saw the two teams battle it out on Mirage, where a strong CT-side performance from Valors' Robert "robby" Brown allowed for the squad to take the map comfortably with yet another 16-8 scoreline to close out the series 2-1 and move into the lower bracket final.
|Valors||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Saad 'Pluto' Siraj||66 - 54||+12||97.4||66.7%||1.28|
|Robert 'robby' Brown||58 - 48||+10||76.3||74.4%||1.17|
|Damian 'droid' Boulware||56 - 50||+6||75.3||73.1%||1.07|
|Brennan 'Patton' Helms||51 - 58||-7||71.3||76.9%||1.01|
|Lous 'Pew' Contreras||49 - 56||-7||69.7||67.9%||0.96|
|Brazen||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Dacoda 'pengnax' St Louis||59 - 52||+7||83.9||66.7%||1.18|
|Max 'SolGoat' Wallace||58 - 56||+2||72.6||74.4%||1.09|
|Isaac 'Izik' Zeigler||57 - 53||+4||77.6||71.8%||1.07|
|Ian 'heretic' Carfora||49 - 58||-9||71.6||75.6%||1.04|
|Austin 'Sway' Pollock||43 - 61||-18||64.9||67.9%||0.84|
The other series in the lower bracket semi-final saw a clash between X13 and Third Impact, where the former soon made easy work of their American counterparts. Heading into Third Impact's pick of Mirage, an impressive CT side by X13 saw the side post twelve rounds by the turn of the half. This advantage would prove to be too much to handle for Third Impact as, despite a valiant comeback attempt in the second half, X13 were able to seal map one 16-11 to head into their own map pick.
On Vertigo, X13 looked to be firmly in the driver's seat for most of game. Despite being unable to convert their pistol round win, X13 soon brushed aside their foes with a seven round win streak midway through their CT-side. Even though Third Impact did answer back with three of the final four rounds of the half, a one-sided second half soon ensued with X13 stealing seven of the eight rounds on offer to shut the door on their opponents and cruise into the lower final relatively uncontested.
|Third Impact||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Keanu 'DaneJoris' Reyes||34 - 37||-3||89.1||72.0%||1.08|
|Kyle 'Wolffe' Greenfield||32 - 43||-11||74.4||72.0%||0.95|
|Josiah 'JoJo' Jimenez||34 - 40||-6||68.4||56.0%||0.91|
|Austin 'AJaxz' Janocha||29 - 37||-8||62.1||66.0%||0.83|
|Noah 'insane' Eheart||22 - 38||-16||48.2||60.0%||0.70|
|X13||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Matthew 'scar' Bruni||48 - 34||+14||103.7||72.0%||1.33|
|Max 'Makzwell' Sparrey||35 - 27||+8||79.8||78.0%||1.26|
|Paul 'aris' Wilson||36 - 27||+9||81.3||72.0%||1.19|
|Brennan 'Lemonz' Lentz||36 - 29||+7||78.1||78.0%||1.15|
|Marshall 'Jonesy' Jones||38 - 34||+4||74.0||70.0%||1.10|
The final matchup of day three saw Strife face Detonate in a series which would determine one of the two spots for ESL Challenger League Season 40. The first half of Inferno would see Detonate be plagued by inconsistency as they struggled to post any concurrent round wins apart from the pistol round and subsequent two round conversion. Strife capitalized on this to secure nine rounds in the first half, where their T-side would prove to be just as unrelenting. Converting their pistol round win, Strife soon stole five rounds in a row off their counterparts. A respectable four round reply by Detonate did present the opportunity for a comeback, but Bobby "stamina" Eitrem's men soon closed the book on map one, securing Inferno 16-10 to go up 1-0 in the series.
The second map of the upper final took place on Strife's pick of Nuke, where things continued to look bleak for Detonate. Unable to build any momentum, Christopher "Swahn" Swahn and co. were no match for the tactical prowess of Strife, quickly finding themselves 10-5 down by the end of their CT-side. Spurred on by a heroic defensive performance by Dylan "SATURN" Finch, Strife managed to steal five rounds in a row on their CT-side to secure map and series point. A brief two round win streak in favor of Detonate would soon be for nothing, as Strife quickly put the final nail in the coffin by securing the final round to best Detonate 16-8 and send their counterparts down to the Consolidation final whilst securing themselves a place in ESL Challenger League Season 40.
|Strife||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Dylan 'SATURN' Finch||44 - 28||+16||111.7||84.0%||1.60|
|Keller 'SLIGHT' Nilan||34 - 21||+13||56.2||78.0%||1.22|
|Bobby 'stamina' Eitrem||33 - 26||+7||80.6||72.0%||1.19|
|David 'J0LZ' Jolin||35 - 23||+12||70.8||74.0%||1.15|
|Brett 'brett' Rhein||32 - 29||+3||64.9||70.0%||1.11|
|Detonate||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|David 'Delta9' Shafer||27 - 35||-8||64.0||66.0%||0.89|
|Christopher 'Swahn' Swahn||28 - 33||-5||56.0||64.0%||0.82|
|Andrew 'Ghostii' Kehler||26 - 36||-10||66.6||64.0%||0.82|
|Christian 'Sutter' Sutter||27 - 35||-8||59.3||60.0%||0.82|
|Silas 'silas' Marrufo||19 - 39||-20||49.7||62.0%||0.61|
With Strife claiming the first of two spots in ESL Challenger League Season 40, X13 and Valors will be duking it out for a matchup versus Detonate in the Consolidation final where the sole remaining place is on offer.
The lower bracket final match is slated to begin tonight at 8PM EST, whilst the Consolidation final is set to begin a day later on Sunday at 8PM EST.