WCS Week 1 Recap

WardBaron Collegiate Series

Week one of the WCS has come and passed, and our eight teams have met each other on Summoner’s Rift for the first time!

Warning:  This recap contains spoilers!  If you want to watch the games un-spoiled, head over to twitch.tv/wardbaron.

Day 1

UConn vs CMU (VOD)General UConn vs CMU

UConn:  Chuckie Chan (Renekton), jasmine33 (Vi), Mister Flaccid (Gragas), Clara and Alice (Sivir), TdollasAKATmoney (Alistar)

CMU:  Burbinator (Nasus), Tegroplease (Lee Sin), Zeyz (Swain), Coggles (Lucian), HakuTenshi (Leona)

University of Connecticut and Carnegie Mellon kicked off the season with an agonizingly close game.  Chuckie Chan, top-laner for UConn, grabbed Renekton and set the standard with an aggressive first blood against Burbinator‘s Nasus.  Tegroplease‘s Lee Sin and Coggles‘ Lucian did an admirable job at preventing UConn from snowballing too quickly, but UConn’s jungler jasmine33 on Vi seemed to always be in the right place at the right time.  

But CMU was not so willing to be run out in the early game.  Coggles found a brilliant Dragon steal with Piercing Light, and the gold pulled up to dead even around the 25 minute mark.  The struggle continued back and forth until CMU managed to grab a few kills and kill Baron Nashor at 35, while UConn’s ADC Clara and Alice on Sivir destroyed CMU’s inhibitor.

The 45 minute game concluded in a nail-biting base race that you need to watch.  University of Connecticut scrapes by with the first win of the season.

MVP:  jasmine33

While every member of UConn played proficiently, jasmine33‘s relentless, no-hesitation Vi play kept UConn ahead of the curve.  Not to mention a stunning KDA ratio of 16 to start the season!

UCLA vs Cal Poly (VOD)General UCLA vs Cal Poly

UCLA: EmperorOng (Jax), A Stick (Vi), jaroz (Ziggs), JigabYte (Draven), SlyferDice (Janna)

Cal Poly: Martel (Renekton), Kigger (Gragas), OmgScottxD (Xerath), Quaratine7 (Caitlyn), brandchoy (Leona)

Cal Poly started this game with a lane swap to switch things up, hoping to shut down EmperorOng‘s Jax.  JigabYte and SlyferDice quickly responded by pushing bottom lane as hard as they can, and due to the changes to turret damage reduction, were able to take the first turret of the game at 5 minutes for UCLA.  After rotating mid, JigabYte picked up first blood and cashed in on an enormous number of adoration stacks.  UCLA wisely recognized JigabYte’s potential to snowball out of control, and gave him the majority of the farm while pushing.

Cal Poly wasn’t able to get their crowd control to the back line to stop the rampaging Draven, thanks to an expertly maneuvered Janna by SlyferDice.  Meanwhile, jaroz‘s Ziggs becomes the final nail in the coffin, dishing out tons of damage and finishing the game with the highest KDA ratio in week one:  20.  A 22 minute inhibitor kill and a Draven with a late-game build is all UCLA needs to finish this one.

MVP:  SlyferDice

SlyferDice‘s quick reflexes and teamwork on Janna, smoothly transitioning between defensive and offensive positioning, kept every fight firmly in UCLA’s control.

Day 2

Arizona vs Ohio State (VOD)General Arizona vs Ohio State

Arizona: Azealin (Shyvana), nhocBym (Vi), Xholu (Xerath), RedCoupa (Lucian), ToodleNoodles (Leona)

Ohio State: Deeze (Renekton), CoryNat (Elise), TheHungryToaster (Gragas), Nitrogen (Ezreal), HAHAHAHAHAHAHA (Thresh)

Azealin began this game by clearly marking top lane as his territory, using Shyvana to bully Deeze out of farm and experience.  In fact, Azealin barely left top lane at all for the first 20 minutes of the game, acting as a solid cornerstone of Arizona’s strategy.  TheHungryToaster fell to nhocBym early in mid lane for first blood, but managed to keep a CS advantage on Xholu and pick up 3 kills along the way.  Nonetheless, Arizona gained a gold lead on Ohio State throughout the laning phase, until things went horribly wrong at Baron.

While working on Baron, RedCoupa decided to divert his attention to CoryNat, who was lurking nearby and hoping to steal the buff with Elise‘s strong single-target burst.  CoryNat instead repelled into the pit and assassinated nhocBym before dying.  The three remaining members of Arizona’s team were very low on health, but decided to try to finish Baron.  The giant worm had another idea however, and killed two members of Arizona’s team, leaving Baron and his exalted status to be picked up by the incoming Ohio State reinforcements.

Despite this uncanny turn of events, Xholu stopped Ohio State’s momentum short by decimating an out-of-position Nitrogen.  Arizona relentlessly pushed up all three lanes and picked a fight wherever they could, finding the win at 37 minutes.

MVP:  Xholu

Xholu‘s Xerath play was terrifying, using his newly-reworked skills to dish out enormous amounts of damage at range throughout the game.  He also amassed the most kills (16) of any player during the first week of the WCS.

Texas Tech vs CSUF (VOD)General Texas Tech vs CSUF

Texas Tech: love glove (Shyvana), Tang (Vi), gG Rallans (Nidalee), LORD SEXINGTON (Graves), Armbarr (Annie)

CSUF: Vruen (Lee Sin), That Jungle Main (Elise), IlleagoVinDeago (LeBlanc), DkBnet (Ashe), Summerboy (Morgana)

Texas Tech started this match with some unfortunate connectivity issues – shout out to the casters SilverDirge and CasterSata for keeping the audience entertained!

CSUF picked their way into a strong snowball potential, thanks to Vruen‘s Lee Sin and IlleagoVinDeago‘s LeBlanc.  They found a small gold advantage in the early game and began to grow it, maintaining lane dominance across the map.  That Jungle Main made a key early dive on bottom turret, and both DkBnet and Summerboy got a fantastic head-start.

Skill-shot CC was the name of this game, as Texas Tech was forced to be mindful of Dark Bindings, Enchanted Crystal Arrows, Ethereal Chains, and Cocoons from start to finish.  Vruen became a thorn in their side, solo-pushing in top lane, and they were forced to send multiple team members to deal with him.  gG Rallens on Nidalee played attentively, staying on top of his lane and trapping key brushes, but Vruen and That Jungle Main managed to sneak a two-man Baron at 19 minutes.

After that, CSUF was only a few well-orchestrated pushes away from victory.

MVP:  That Jungle Main

That Jungle Main lived up to his name this game, dominating the jungle and staying at the forefront of every team play.  He even went Legendary during the game, losing the status shortly afterwards in a 1v4 struggle.

Honorable mention goes to Summerboy for a very scary support Morgana.

Final Remarks

The games have only just begun, and there’s plenty more action to be had.  Head over to wardbaron.com/wcs to see the schedule coming up for next week!

We got to see 33 out of 118 champions this week – a good spread across four games!  Gragas and Leona were played or banned in every game, Kassadin and Lulu were banned in every game, and Vi was played in every game.

See you next week!

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Penn State Grad - Bioengineering and Music Technology. I love games, music, and eSports, and founded/presided over the Penn State University Park Electronic Sports Club (psupesports.com). @EdwinMols

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