This Finals weekend kicked off with the NA LCS Third Place Decider series between 100 Thieves (“100T”) and Team SoloMid (“TSM”). Both teams were eager to finish off the split strong and to show their fans that their faith is well placed. Each of these teams has had their ups and downs during the regular season. Despite this, they both pushed on to get their spots in the Oracle Arena. With championship points and glory on the line, TSM and 100T took to the Rift in this crucial series!
The opening game of this series was exciting, with 100T pulling out the win. They had a lead for much of the game, but nevertheless it was quite close. The early game was very quiet, with only a couple Ocean Dragons being taken by TSM. 100T finally made a play in the top lane with three members to get First Blood for Ssumday onto Hauntzer. This also led to the First Tower bonus. TSM was no slouch during this time though, getting a Rift Herald and a tower of their own in the bottom lane around the same time.
At 20 minutes, 100T had a small gold lead of 1.5k. This grew after a team fight win around a Mountain Dragon. While TSM did get the Dragon, 100T had a great turn around with Ssumday and Aphromoo to win the skirmish two-for-one. From here, both teams poked around each other for Baron vision until 30 minutes. At this point, the game blew open. Aphromoo died after trying to force an engage, which prompted TSM to start Baron. AnDa Flashed and stole the Baron from Grig, and another team fight broke out. 100T demonstrated immaculate team fighting by getting a clean Ace.
The Baron buff netted 100T a number of outer towers but they couldn’t crack the base. After Aphromoo was caught out again, TSM tried to fight 100T around their middle Tier Two Tower. This backfired, and 100T won this fight three for zero. With the advantage, they quickly rushed the base to take the middle and top Inhibitors. The final nail was put in TSM’s coffin in a last team fight at 38 minutes. Yet again, 100T smashed TSM and killed two members quickly. While some of the members stopped TSM from returning to base, 100T blew through TSM’s structures and took their Nexus at 39 minutes.
100T brought Cody Sun back to replace Rikara, but this wouldn’t prove to be enough to stop Bjergsen’s Vel’Koz and TSM. Even though they lost, 100T had one of the best early games they’ve had this split. They turned around a TSM invade to get two kills for Ryu and Cody Sun. 100T also made a five-man play in the bottom lane to get a kill and the First Tower bonus. They constantly pushed the tempo of the game, and brought down a few towers. TSM were able to get some objectives and kills of their own, but still were at a deficit at 20 minutes.
100T tended to lose team fights badly because of TSM’s tanky front line and huge back line damage. This was showcased during a team fight in 100T’s jungle, where they went one-for-zero and another in TSM’s jungle where they went two-for-zero. 100T, because they began to lose these fights, lost a lot of pressure and ability to take objective during this time.
Due to this, TSM was able to secure vision around Baron and apply mid lane pressure. This gave them an opportunity to sneak the Baron. Though AnDa found out about it at the last second, he had no opportunity to steal it and TSM walked away with the Baron for free. With it, they pushed down multiple towers, and found themselves at the top lane Inhibitor Tower. Cody Sun was picked off, which let TSM take the Inhibitor. They kept going, cutting down more 100T members as they knocked down structures and smashed the Nexus at 29 minutes.
100T controlled another early game and took another win to bring TSM to match point. It started off with Hauntzer diving Ryu to get First Blood. 100T did manage to kill him in return and also take down Bjergsen to come out on top of the play. They commanded all the objectives on the map, getting an Ocean Dragon, the First Tower bonus and the Rift Herald. They took all three outer towers while keeping TSM from destroying even one. 100T had better team fighting this game, which showed in a one-for-zero in TSM’s jungle, which also gave them and Infernal Dragon.
TSM did almost bring back the match at around 20 minutes. Here, they found a winning team fight two-for-one in the mid lane. With the man advantage, they turned to Baron. They didn’t end up getting the buff, but got a kill on Ssumday instead. The teams traded towers, but at 26 minutes 100T started the Baron themselves. They burned it down and secured it, then turned for a team fight afterwards. It was close at first, but 100T ended up smashing TSM three-for-one.
They quickly took multiple towers and the middle and bottom Inhibitors. Shortly after, Zven tried to one-versus-one Ssumday’s Cho’Gath, but killed himself to the monster tank. With this, 100T pushed the top lane and knocked down the Inhibitor Tower. A long siege eventually resulted in this third Inhibitor’s downfall, and TSM’s too. 100T obliterated TSM after destroying the Inhibitor. They killed three defenders and easily finished off their Nexus at 31 minutes.
In an extremely clean fashion, TSM tied the series back up with a win in game four. They had control at every single point in the game, never giving a chance for 100T to mount a comeback. There was some action early on, but no kills besides Infernal Dragon for TSM. At 15 minutes the first impactful fight occurred around the second Infernal Dragon. Both teams met to contest it, and a team fight broke out. TSM dominated this, going three-for-zero and getting their second Infernal Dragon as well as the First Tower bonus.
They took the Rift Herald soon after, and at 20 minutes TSM had a significant 4k gold lead. They used the Herald to get another tower in the middle lane. 100T attempted to make a play against the TSM bot lane duo in the top lane, but TSM countered it perfectly. They won this fight three-for-zero, and it gave them the Baron Nashor too. With this, TSM made a 4.7K Baron Power Play by destroying a bunch of towers outside of 100T’s base.
After the Baron buff expired, the game stalled for a few minutes. During this downtime, TSM set up vision around the Baron pit and killed their third Infernal Dragon, giving them a massive damage buff. At 29 minutes, TSM set up in 100T’s jungle. Hauntzer’s Sion engaged a team fight, which TSM proceeded to win three-for-zero. With such little resistance, TSM made short work of 100T’s base and demolished their Nexus at 30 minutes to bring on the Silver Scrapes.
In the closest, most exciting game of the series, TSM defeated 100T to win the NA LCS Third Place Decider. It certainly wasn’t easy, as 100T had a large advantage for much of the match. They secured First Blood as well as an Infernal Dragon by minute six.They found kills, the First Tower bonus and a Mountain Dragon too. TSM tried to take Rift Herald and equalize the game, and got it. Unfortunately for them, 100T killed two of their teammates for it and got a top tower.
There were a few more fights that occurred in the mid game, and they were quite close. Both teams won fights three-for-two in back-to-back fights, which lead to more objectives. During this time, 100T found their third Mountain Dragon, making their Baron threat huge. But a fantastic Dark Binding from Mithy resulted into a kill onto Cody Sun and AnDa, which let TSM take an easy Baron. With it, they took some outer towers and got control of the Elder Dragon pit.
At Elder, 100T came to contest while TSM burned it down. TSM secured the buff and a kill to boot. A minute later, TSM took a second Baron buff as well. Now being at 40 minutes, TSM pushed all three lanes with the buff. 100T found a great pick onto Zven, but lost Aphromoo for it. This stalled the push, and the teams grouped around mid one last time. Hauntzer found another great engage, and due to Cody Sun misplaying and jumping into the enemy team, TSM annihilated 100T. They Ace’d 100T, and charged through their base to destroy the Nexus and end this tense series at a long 45 minutes.
To watch the NA LCS, visit watch.na.lolesports.com. For more information on the split, teams, standings, and players, visit www.lolesports.com. Recaps of former weeks and other LoL content can be found at https://thegamehaus.com/league-of-legends/.
Featured image via LoL Esports.
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