In a single elimination match, two of Valorant esports' brightest personalities competed for the year's final opportunity for international glory. Both 100T and Sentinels entered the Last Chance Qualifier hoping to redeem themselves after lackluster regular seasons in 2023. Sadly for 100T, a renewed Sentinels roster crushed their hopes.
The star-studded Sentinels squad put up big moments all over the field, outperforming Cryocells' excellent performance. For the first time since the Sentinels were put together in the winter, the Brazilian/NA crossover has begun making an impact.
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VCT Americas LCQ: 100 Thieves VS Sentinels Recap
"The match of the century"— VALORANT Esports NA (@valesports_na) July 16, 2023
A single elimination match between, @Sentinels and @100T_Esports, two of NA's most notable teams. Who will keep their #VALORANTLCQ journey alive?
📺 https://t.co/LkYuIAvtSH pic.twitter.com/MCJf71cJnV
Starting off on Pearl, the best of three started in chaotic fashion. A 100T attack that didn't get an opening kill until the last round of the half was trampled by Sentinels. Zekken took the lead with a dominant score of 16 kills and 4 deaths while the rest of his team followed closely. The first half concluded with a score of 9-3 that felt even more unfair.
Aggression ruled the second half of the game. In the first 30 seconds of the most rounds, Sentinels sped towards site executions while 100T rushed the extremities to either deflect the hit or set up a quick flank. In the end, 100T discovered the proper pace adjustments to push through to overtime. Cryocells' incredible 21-kill second half performance carried over into overtime when he quickly 3K-locked Sentinels to end the game 14-12.
For map one, an odd Harbor-Omen arrangement succeeded, so for map two, 100T kept things interesting by selecting Chamber. It took 100T six rounds to settle in on Split, but once they got Cryocells an Operator, their defensive strategy truly came into focus. His Chamber was positioned at A early, which enabled reinforcements to move towards mid and thwart the Sentinels' ongoing mid push. Unfortunately for the thieves, Pearl's attack ability, or lack thereof, was too much to overcome. Sentinels defeated the opposition 13-7, forcing the series to a decisive map after winning all eight of their attack rounds.
As both teams locked in Yoru on the elimination map, the spectators, broadcast talent, and players knew they were in for something special. While both Yorus were the server's top kill scorers, TenZ had a bigger influence. Along with zekken's Raze, he consistently outperformed Showers on the attack and enabled a dynamic and aggressive playstyle to keep 100T off-balance. 100T was playing a Chamber alongside Asuna and lacked the agility to stay competitive.
Following a 10-2 first-half, Cryocells attempted to pull his side out of the trenches by starting 100T's attack with back-to-back 3Ks and ending it with an ace to avoid elimination. Sentinels promptly ended the map 13-7 despite a gallant effort by 100T to extend the comeback.
Apart from Cryocells' series-best 65 kills and 18 opening kills, 100T had trouble making a consistent difference. While Sentinels ran rampant over the server, a few streaks of rounds kept 100T afloat. 100T's VCT year has come to an end after just one game at the LCQ. Sentinels will next face Cloud9, another elite NA team.
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Mrinal, also known by her gaming alias Jollies10, is a semi-professional Valorant player with a never-ending love for Esports. She lives by the rule Eat. Sleep. Game. Repeat.