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NA LCS: FlyQuest vs 100 Thieves – The Art of the Base Race

FlyQuest vs 100 Thieves

Week 5, Day 2 of the NA LCS saw some amazing games and highlights. The most exciting match came from the FlyQuest’s matchup against 100 Thieves. When everyone thought that 100 Thieves were going to take the victory, FlyQuest surprised everyone and won a base race. We’re going to take a look into before the game, where the game was before the base race, and a close examination of both team’s execution right at the finish line. If you want to see a recap from the day, check out our article here.

A “Base Race” is when both teams are rushing for their opponent’s Nexus with little to no defense presented. These games come down to precise decision making to take down structures and maximizing damage. For more information about Nexus defense and the split second decisions to destroy the Nexus, check out The Breakdown. If you want to watch the game and follow along, check out the VOD from LoL Esports.

Pregame and Draft

Both FlyQuest and 100 Thieves had won against their Day 1 opponents. FlyQuest were looking to create a 3-game winning streak, and 100 Thieves were looking to stay at the top of the tables.

First Phase

The draft for the game was fairly consistent for the current meta. FlyQuest banned mages Taliyah and Swain, and support Rakan. The Theives banned Aatrox, Nocturne, and Zoe, who are strong right now and taken away due to FlyQuest’s first pick on blue side. For their first pick, FlyQuest locked in Braum for Juan “JayJ” Guibert. 100 Thieves answered back with strong jungle and top lane picks, Kindred and Dr. Mundo. FlyQuest picked up jungle matchup Trundle and a Varus for Jason “WildTurtle” Tran. The last pick for the first round was Lucian for Sun “Cody Sun” Li Yu.

Record-wise, FlyQuest had won their previous two games with a bot lane of Braum and Varus, so seeing FlyQuest prioritize it meant that they wanted comfort picks for their bot lane carry. To add to that comfort bot lane, FlyQuest banned out supports Morgana and Pyke, to keep Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black from making picks and roaming to other lanes.

Second Phase

100 Thieves banned out Dr. Mundo counter-picks Darius and Gnar, to give Kim “Ssumday” Chanho at least an even matchup. The Thieves locked in Alistar support, leaving a counter-pick for Yoo “Ryu” Sangwook. Still needing their solo laners, FlyQuest picked Gangplank top and Orianna mid. 100 Thieves rounded out their composition with Ryze for Ryu, a comfort pick and good matchup into Orianna. 

Gangplank is often picked into Dr. Mundo because a safe lane allows GP to scale to the two and three item powerspikes that Gangplank needs to deal massive damage. Because Dr. Mundo is fairly weak before his level six is available, many teams will look to either take an even lane like GP, or counter it with Gnar, Darius, or sometimes Kennen. 

FlyQuest are looking to stay safe early on and take an advantageous fight when they have a few items under their belt. Orianna’s Shockwave, with Gangplank’s Cannon Barrage, provides massive amounts of area of effect damage, and can catch out the less tanky members of 100 Thieves. The Thieves want to place pressure and get Andy “AnDa” Hoang’s Kindred stacking their passive early. Once the Mark of the Kindred gets to 4 stacks, Kindred gains an additional 75 range to their auto-attacks and abilities. The fallback to 100 Thieves’ composition is that they have a lot of single target damage, so picking off FlyQuest is their best way to win. 

Early and Mid Game

Early Game: 00:00-20:00

FlyQuest jungler Lucas “Santorin” Larsen pathed red buff to the top side scuttle crab to take the first stack away from AnDa’s Kindred. Santorin also makes a trip top and makes Ssumday expend his summoner Flash. AnDa gets very lucky as he approaches the bot side scuttle crab, it gets marked, and AnDa picks up his first mark at 3:07. 

Ssumday is able to trade favorably against Lee “Flame” Hojong’s Gankplank, and before Flame back recall, AnDa routes as Ssumday solo-dives and picks up First Blood for 100 Thieves at 5:05. A few minutes later, AnDa showed up again top, and this time picked up the kill onto Flame. The advantages that Ssumday is able to get during this game is part of the reason why the base race eventually happens. 

AnDa is able to pick up his second stack at 9:08 with the bottom scuttle crab, and in the next minute, Ryu and AnDa again show top to press their lead topside. 100 Thieves take First Turret top at 11:01 and catch out Jang “Keane” Lae-young’s Orianna in the mid lane. AnDa picks up the Rift Herald, and at 14:26, Ssumday solo kills Flame in a solo tower dive top.  

Flame dies again at 17:59, and Keane gets caught out at 18:36, allowing 100 Thieves to pick up a three turret lead before heading into the mid game.

Mid Game: 20:00-32:00

By this point, FlyQuest have taken two turrets, and only one kill onto Apromoo. They are about 6k gold down, and currently cannot match Dr. Mundo in a side lane. With Ryu’s Ryze scaling will mean that FlyQuest is not going to be able to match either side lane once Ryze has another item or two.

100 Thieves pick up another Mountain Dragon, and the teams farm up more. FlyQuest picks up another kill onto Aphromoo, but with Flame securing the kill with his Cannon Barrage. 100 Thieves push their strength and dive the mid lane Inhibitor tower to kill WildTurtle and almost kill JayJ. After giving up the mid lane Inhibitor, 100 Thieves move to force a fight with their gold lead. As Ssumday pushes bot lane, the other four members of 100 Thieves, look to have FlyQuest fight them, or give up another Inhibitor.

FlyQuest tries to back off, and lose two members, the bot lane Inhibitor, and the Baron at 26:04. With an almost 10k gold lead, the Thieves should be in the driver’s seat, but FlyQuest isn’t done yet. They are able to use Trundle’s Ice Pillar and pick off both AnDa and Aphromoo. Because they need to back off, 100 Thieves take their third Mountain Dragon at 28:17.

During their Baron Power Play, 100 Thieves only pick up an additional 947 gold. The FlyQuest team fighting starts to take hold as they fend off another push from the Thieves. Ssumday’s Mundo finally gets shut down, and AnDa dies again, giving FlyQuest more another breath in the game. The bot lane Inhibitor respawns for FlyQuest, and the setup for the Base Race begins.

The Race is ON

FlyQuest can’t match 100 Thieves in the side lanes, so they need to group up and hope to kill the members of the Thieves. Ryu is bot and Ssumday is top, both with Teleport up. Because 100 Thieves just needs to buy time, they give up an inner turret and try to defend the Inhibitor.

Cody Sun uses Lucian’s Culling to try and clear the wave mid, but it’s blocked by Braum’s Unbreakable to keep the backdoor bonus on turrets off. Aphromoo gets picked off again by Trundle’s Ice Pillar, and Flyquest finish him off. Ryu takes the bot lane Inhibitor, and FlyQuest takes the mid Inhibitor. Ssumday channels his Teleport from the top lane, and both teams are on the Nexus Towers. Ssumday’s Teleport could have been channeled earlier, but when every second counts, the more proactive team often wins the game.

AnDa tries to use Kindred’s Ultimate, Lamb’s Respite, to save the towers, but the ultimate does not prevent towers from dying. Cody Sun channels his Teleport when the first minion take tower shots, but when AnDa dies, it’s five FlyQuest members versus three 100 Thieves members pushing.

100 Thieves have three Mountain Dragons, but the additional damage percentage only applies to towers, not the Nexus. Five is greater than three, and FlyQuest are barely able to squeak out the win.

FlyQuest vs 100 Thieves
FlyQuest vs 100 Thieves post game chart. Photo via

For FlyQuest, this win gets them tied for first with Team Liquid, Echo Fox, and 100 Thieves. With how close the standings are currently, every win is going to count towards making playoffs, and hopefully Worlds.

For 100 Thieves, this loss should be a wake up call. Ssumday has been playing outstanding lately, but continually having a 1-1 week is going to give them the same struggles that every team is trying to avoid. It’s apparent that AnDa doesn’t have the experience that Meteos had, and split second decision making and coordination was the reason FlyQuest won.


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