After becoming champions of UGC in St. Louis last week, Denial was looking to continue their success and climb the ranks of of the standings once again. Before we go into the events that unfolded for Denial, let’s have a recap of the HCS standings before cup #3 took place.
1st) Counter Logic Gaming with 5,580 HCS points
2nd) Evil Genius with 4,590 HCS points
3rd) Denial with 4,335 HCS points
4th) OpTic Halo with 2,750 HCS points
6th) Str8 Rippin with 1,470 HCS points
8th) VwS Halo with 505 HCS points
Being an online only cup, everything I watched was through DenialMikwen’s Twitch. I will try to rotate around the whole squad when they stream online cups, so as to get a different perspective each week. That being said, let’s move onto what happened in this weeks HCS Cup #3.
Denial was the number three seed coming into the event, and if they could place in the top two for this week’s cup and beat out EG, then they could move to the number two seed. Being the number three seed resulted in Denial having a bye for the first round, putting them directly into round 2.
Round 2 put them against Impact as Red Team, the team they would stay as for almost the whole tournament. Match one had them playing Lockdown Oddball, which was Denial’s forte for this tournament. DenialChig and DenialCloud had complete control of the ball with DenialMikwen and DenialRyaNoob acting as slayers. They swept the first game 200-28 with DenialCloud having 105 and DenialChig 95.
Match two was a quick game of Warlord Slayer. Denial kept positive control of the map using the portals to their advantaged. Denial.Halo won the match 50-33 with DenialMikwen going +13. That win made the series 2-0 moving Denial onto round 3.
Round 3 I could not watch, but I saw that they won the series 2-0 against Underground Kings moving them onto Round 4 of the tournament.
Round 4 had Denial against Same But Sometimes Not Same. Match one had them playing Warlord Oddball. The game was one of constant give and take between the two teams, with Denial having to switch roles from ball carrier to slayer. Denial came out on top in the end 200-101 with the times as follows: DenialRyaNoob 86, DenialCloud 55, DenialChig, 38, DenialMikwen 21.
Match two was Slayer played on Lockdown. Although a close game, Denial came out on top in the end due to better map control. The final score, 50-37 made the series 2-0 moving Denial onto round 5. The top slayers for the game were DenialChig and DenialRyaNoob with 15 each followed by DenialMikwen with 12 and DenialCloud with 8.
Round 5 put Denial up against VwS Gaming. Match one had the team on Lockdown playing Team Crazy King. The game did not start out in Denial’s favor with VwS taking an early lead. VwS kept the lead for the fist half of the game being up by almost 70 seconds at one point. DenialMikwen did a push into Snipe Tower on a challenge and by winning the challenge, net him the Snipe/Sword combo. Once he was able to set himself up in the tower, he was able to provide coverage for his team. Time ran out this game, but not before Denial made an unbelievable comeback 182-124 with DenialMIkwen getting a Killing Frenzy right before the game ended.
Match 2 was slow a start of Warlock Slayer. It was another close game, but Denial proved to have better control of the portals and map, netting them the win 50-38 and moving them onto round 6.
Round 6 put Denial against eLevate who was able to move on when EG forfeited their game, due to internet difficulties. Match one was Denial’s game of choice against of Lockdown Oddball. Denial started the game with a perfect set up in the Library, netting them around 60 seconds before they had to relocate. DenialMikwen once again proved his skill with the Snipe/Sword combo and provided perfect cover for his team, sweeping the game 200-48.
Match 2 was also slow to start, and ended up making their team hard reset their game before they could play Shrine Slayer. This game pushed Denial’s skills to the edge. DenialMikwen made some keys plays with the sniper but in the end the game was at a stalemate 49-49, with neither team wanting to push, for fear of being that last kill. DenialCloud was able to safely get rockets and with a well placed rocket and a Hail Mary grenade, made the game winning kill, ending the series 2-0 and moving them onto the finals.
The finals had them play against CLG once again. Match one had the two play CTF on Shrine. Both teams pushed and pulled with each other taking turns in dominating the map. CLG was the first to score, with Denial right behind them. They swapped flags again, tying the game 2-2. CLG was able to make a successful push and captured the last flag in the end, making the final score 3-2.
Match two was Warlord Slayer. CLG started out strong in the beginning and took early map control. Unfortunately for Denial, they were never able to make a comeback and lost the game 50-36. Denial was down 0-2 in the series, but, with it being the finals it was a best of 5 series.
Match three put Denial in what looked like home for them that day, Lockdown Oddball. The game was a constant fight over control of the ball, with each team taking turns having possession of it. Denial looked like they would win the game with only 9 seconds to go, but CLG was able to make a push and take the ball back. Denial was never able to recover the ball. In the end, DenialMikwen tried to make a final push into Snipe Tower and take the ball carrier out. It looked like he could’ve done it if it were not for some miscommunication with the team. He ending up being killed by falling stalactites. With that death, CLG was able to run across the map with the ball, net the remaining time they needed, and win the series 200-191.
Though Denial lost to CLG, they were able to move up in the standings as the second seed overall. I see a rivalry between Denial and CLG, for when the two play, the best of each team comes out and it is always a thrill to watch them go head to head. The top three teams for cup #3 were CLG, Denial and Str8 Rippin. With BtH disbanding ( APG going to OpTic with the drop of Aries) , the seeds saw some changes. Here are the current top 8, following last nights cup:
1st) Counter Logic Gaming with 6,130 HCS points
2nd) Denial with 4,695 HCS points
3rd) Evil Geniuses with 4,640 HCS points
4th) OpTic Halo with 2,750 HCS points
5th) Cloud9 with 2,125 HCS points
6th) Str8 Rippin with 1,710 HCS points
7th) eLevate with 610 HCS points
8th) VwS Halo with 580 HCS points
Denial will return in the PGL’s 10k cash tournament, running from January 16-17th. HCS Cup #4 will be back January 25th.