GodLike Esports managed to edge past Valor in a tightly contested three-map series (13-7 Icebox, 5-13 Haven, 13-9 Bind) to book a meeting with Velocity Gaming in the Upper Bracket Semi-Finals of the TEC Gauntlet Season 1 Main Event.
The two teams went for identical orthodox compositions on Icebox and it was Team Valor who struck first, winning three rounds in a row in Attack. A timely push from Vishal ‘haivaan’ Sharma towards the A main area yielded GodLike their first round. At 3-3, Valor took the lead back once again on the back of a quick A execute, with the spike detonating in the 1v1 situation between Shane ‘Whitehorse’ Kariwow and Ishpreet ‘HuntR’ Chadha. However, GodLike rallied on to win the rest of the rounds in the half to end it with an 8-4 lead. Two opening kills from Viren ‘The Game’ on the Sheriff saw Valor take the second half pistol. However, a triple kill from Tejas ‘Rexy’ Kotian on the A post-plant ensured an 11-6 lead for GodLike. Valor responded instantly, shutting down GodLike towards B. However, GodLike soon moved to map point on the back of another triple from Rexy and converted the very first one after opting to go B on the back of Killjoy’s Lockdown, winning Icebox 13-7.
Both the teams again went for nearly identical compositions, with Valor opting for the Reyna as GodLike stuck to the Phoenix. Valor used Astra’s Nebulas on both corners of B to plant the spike and play the post-plant to win the pistol. GodLike managed to retake the C site on their first full-buy but it was a complete Valor show in the first half otherwise. Valor kept prodding towards all corners of the map, confusing GodLike’s rotation before hitting a target site with great success as they took a 9-1 lead. GodLike ended the half positively with two successive rounds to lessen the deficit but Valor took home the second-half pistol as well to hit double figures. A 1v2 clutch from HuntR on the retake at C saw him have enough time to get the defuse in and extend the lead to 11-3. GodLike responded with two hard-fought round wins to crawl back into the game. But, Valor were intent on forcing the third map, with a 1v2 clutch from Pixelzz at B moving the team to map point and another clutch at B, this time in a 1v1 situation from The Game saw Valor take home Haven 13-5.
Bind saw GodLike pull out the Sova-Skye combination once again, strengthening their post-plant as well through Viper and Brimstone whereas Valor went for an old-school Jett-Raze combination. Valor tried to play the Attack side similarly to how they did on Haven but found too much to be done amidst the information heavy lineup from GodLike, with the latter racing to a 5-0 lead. Valor’s first round of the Attack side came via a quick A execute. A quad-kill from haivaan saw GodLike take a 7-1 lead. Swapnil ‘Psykovsky’ Gawand responded with a quad-kill of his own to spur Valor on, who took 3 of the last 4 rounds of the half. haivaan converted a 1v3 clutch to nab the second-half pistol and GodLike converted the next round to cross double figures. Psykovsky shut down GodLike’s A push with a triple to get Valor up and running in the second half. Valor managed to shrink the deficit down to just 2 rounds but GodLike soon turned it up a notch, taking control of A site and planting the spike on the back of Whitehorse’s Viper Pit. After punishing Valor’s attempts to push B long and showers, GodLike proceeded to plant the spike at B and move to map point. Valor pulled one back thanks to the duo of Vipul ‘Stroky’ Patole and Pixelzz. But, Whitehorse’s crucial double kill near pockets proved to be the deciding factor as GodLike took control of the A site, planted the spike and defended it to close out Bind 13-9.
Whitehorse was the star for GodLike in the absence of Debanjan ‘DeathMaker’ Das, with 52 kills to his name and a positive Kill/Death Differential of 16, making him the WD Black MVP of the series.