Last weekend on Sunday, September 8th, Clutch Gaming (CG) took on Team Solomid (TSM) in a Best of 5 to determine who would be the third place world qualifier from the North American League Championship Series.
TSM Roster: Broken Blade, Spica, Bjergsen, Sven, and Smoothie
Clutch Gaming Roster: Huni, Lira, Damonte, Cody Sun, and Vulcan
Game 1 – TSM blue side, CG red side
TSM (Jayce, Sejuani, Azir, Sona, Tahm Kench)
CG (Pantheon, Sylas, Neeko, Xayah, Rakan)
TSM start Game 1 off with a bang, killing four members of Clutch Gaming and securing Rift Herald at 11 minutes in. Three minutes later, TSM extends their lead, picking off 3 more members in TSM top-side jungle while Clutch Gaming only gets one in return. However, Clutch Gaming begins to recover through back to back teamfights in the next 15 minutes of the game, evening up the game at 11 kills (TSM) to 10 (CG) at the 30 minute mark. TSM then finds Huni alone on the top side and kill him, securing them the Baron Nashor and another kill onto Vulcan. After TSM takes the mid inhibitor, they reset and being to seige Clutch Gaming’s bottom tier 2 turret. A fantastic ult by Huni forces Sven to flash over wall into gromp, where Damonte proceeds to blow him up. With it now being a 4 v 5, TSM is forced to retreat, losing 2 more members in the process. The game is now tied 13 to 13 at 35 minutes in. Unfortunately for Clutch Gaming, Huni fails the engage in the next fight and the team is almost aced, with only Lira being left alive. With no one to defend the base, TSM pushes down mid and ends the game.
Game 2 – CG blue side, TSM red side (TSM 1 – 0)
TSM (Aatrox, Sejuani, Sylas, Xayah, Nautilus)
CG (Gangplank, Elise, Irelia, Kai’sa, Rakan)
TSM starts Game 2 with a successful level 3 dive onto Damonte. Meanwhile, Huni and Lira also successfully dive Broken Blade in the top lane. Both Bjergsen and Damonte channel teleport to top lane, Bjergsen to initiate a pincer and Damonte to escort the low health Huni and Lira to safety. Smoothie, Bjergsen, and Spira arrive on time after diving Damonte and kill all 3 members of Clutch Gaming. The score is now 4 to 1 in TSM’s favor at 4 minutes in. Knowing Broken Blade has no flash, Lira successfully ganks and kills him. Next, TSM dives Cody Sun and Vulcan between the first two turrets and both are killed. Lira arrives, killing Spica but also dying shortly after. TSM then dives Clutch Gaming’s bot again, killing both. Next, Damonte is killed in a 3 man dive at CG’s upper tier 2 turret. After Damonte respawns he pushes up top and overextends, giving TSM yet another kill. Once again, TSM falls short in the next few teamfights, allowing CG back into the game. Luckily for TSM, CG make several critical misplays in the last teamfight at 36 minutes and gets aced. TSM are able to end the game before a single member of CG can respawn.
Game 3 – TSM blue side, CG red side (TSM 2 – 0)
TSM (Aatrox, Sejuani, Sylas, Lucian, Rakan)
CG (Irelia, Jarvan, Qiyana, Ezreal, Tahm Kench)
4 minutes into Game 3, Huni and Lira attempt dive Broken Blade. Broken Blade survives with a sliver of HP and Spica shows up, trying to 1 v 2 but dying instead. 4 minutes later, Bjergsen catches Huni out in top side river and uses Qiyana’s stolen ultimate to burst him down, aided by Broken Blade and Spica. Damonte and Lira try to avenge Huni, but Damonte is killed and Lira is forced to retreat. Next, TSM secures infernal drake but as they are leaving the pit CG collapses, killing Sven and Smoothie. After this, Damonte facechecks a bush, dies, respawns, and then finds a solo kill onto Broken Blade. Damonte and Lira then kill Bjersen in top lane, and TSM answers with a successful dive onto Damonte. At 21 minutes in, Sven is caught out by himself in mid lane and killed. 2 minutes later, Broken Blade baits Huni into engaging on him and TSM are able to kill Huni under CG’s bottom tier 1 turret. It is now 6 to 5 in CG’s favor. The first real teamfight starts at 26 minutes in, with Bjergsen being the only casualty. From here on, all fights are won by Clutch Gaming, with TSM not securing another kill for the rest of the game. Clutch Gaming wins Game 3, 14 to 5.
Game 4 – CG blue side, TSM red side (TSM 2 – CG 1)
TSM (Aatrox, Sejuani, Azir, Xayah, Rakan)
CG (Gnar, Skarner, syals, Ezreal, and Tahm Kench)
Clutch Gaming secures first blood 7 minutes in with a gank onto Sven. CG are able to find another kill onto Sven as TSM attempts to retreat after taking the dragon. At 13 minutes, Lira is caught out in TSM’s top side jungle. Lira then goes top to gank Broken Blade, but Spica is there to countergank and secures Broken Blade a double kill. For the next 25 minutes, both teams only find singular picks onto each other. At 34 minutes Damonte flanks TSM infront of TSM’s mid tier 2 turret with Sejuanis stolen ultimate. CG are able to kill Spica and Bjergsen, which is enough for CG to end the game.
Game 5 – TSM blue side, CG red side (TSM 2 – CG 2)
TSM (Aatrox, Skarner, Corki, Kai’sa, Braum)
CG (Huni, Lira, Damonte, Cody Sun, Vulcan)
In the first 23 minutes of Game 5, both teams are only able to find one kill: Spica ganks Huni, and Broke Blade is caught out at bot side tri-bush. After CG secures their third drake at 23 minutes, Huni engages on TSM with a flash ult while Damonte assassinates Spica off to the side. TSM quickly turn and kill Huni but lose Smoothie. Broken Blade gets the reset and pummels Vulcan to death. Lira and Damonte then re-engage. Damonte buys time with his stopwatch which allows Cody Sun to take down Sven and Broken Blade. 2 minutes later, Spica is caught out by baron pit while Huni dives into TSM’s back line. Huni is killed by Sven but Cody Sun is able to find another kill onto Smoothie. The score is now 6 to 5 in CG’s favor at 26:30. A teamfight breaks out 5 minutes later at 31:15 after Huni teleports from bot lane to stop TSM from taking the Baron. Vulcan mispositions and is instantly deleted but Huni completes his teleport and lands a good ult onto 3 members of TSM. Damonte flanks on the left side but whiffs his ult. It doesn’t matter though. TSM left Cody Sun unchecked, allowing him to free fire from the back line leading to Clutch Gaming killing every member of TSM except Spica. Spica fails to flash-smite steal the baron and dies. After taking the mid turret, CG rotate bot lane and continue to push with Baron buff. In a last-ditch effort, TSM engages on CG. Damonte lands a beautiful ult, stunning 3 members of TSM against their bot inhibitor. CG collapses on TSM, leading to an ace and proceed to end the game, securing their spot to Worlds in a fashionable reverse sweep.