As week five of the Halo Championship Series (HCS) Pro League begins, the standings remain unclear. Although OpTic Gaming and Team EnVyUs (nV) hold tight to their first and second seeds, remaining teams fight for higher positions. Three teams with 3-5 records hope to snatch the last two spots in the HCS Fall Season finals, while also avoiding relegation.
LOL cooled after climbing from the depths of the standings, but week five saw no improvement for them. Evil Geniuses (EG) hopes to rebound, yet they too struggle to end their losing streak since replacing Victory X.
LOL vs. Luminosity Gaming | Luminosity wins 3-0
APG’s standout performances helped LOL to a 3-5 record after a distracting start to the HCS Pro League. Although LOL recovered from Maniac’s retirement and the loss of their eSports organization, Luminosity Gaming overmatched them in week five.
LOL stumbles into game one Fathom – Capture the Flag (CTF), giving up two early points. Naded picks off LOL with the Railgun and controls the game for Luminosity. With Luminosity leading 2-0, a player disconnect forces a match restart. LOL capitalizes on the reset, using their second chance to regain map control and secure their first flag. Since CTF resets retain the scores of previous matches, Luminosity answers back with one more capture to win the game. The rest of the series ends how it starts, and Luminosity wins 3-0.
Enigma 6 vs. OpTic Gaming | OpTic wins 3-1
In a five-game series, whichever team drops the first game needs to win game two – the swing game. After OpTic takes game one, Enigma 6 (E6) fights back with a teetering Plaza – Slayer win. E6 falls behind halfway through, 28-23, but Suspector traps OpTic in yard with the sniper rifle to even the score. The game stays tied late when OpTic SnakeBite holds cinema with his own sniper rifle. As the time nears expiration, neither team pushes. When Overshield respawns, OpTic reacts too slow and Shooter grabs the Overshield for E6. The power-up decides the game, and E6 wins 50-45.
OpTic runs away with game three on Rig – Strongholds before ending the series on Fathom – CTF. Despite scoring two flags, OpTic can’t secure one more to end the game. Under a minute left in regulation time, E6 runs the final flag to their base. The desperation capture almost ties it, but OpTic stops the E6 flag run. The game doesn’t reach the score limit and ends with time. OpTic takes the CTF game 2-1.
Allegiance vs. Evil Geniuses | Allegiance wins 3-2
Both Allegiance and Evil Geniuses need wins this week. Allegiance hopes to avoid relegation and not finish the season with just one win. While EG also hopes to avoid relegation, their 3-5 record keeps them within reach of a playoff spot. At the start of week five, nothing guarantees Luminosity’s fourth seed. EG begins week five leading 2-0, but just like their series against OpTic in week four, everything crumbles.
Allegiance’s luck turns after taking game three. They head into a game four replay of Coliseum – CTF. Game four-one goes into overtime where Allegiance captures a flag during the last minute. The game looks over for EG, but multiple slays shifts the map back in their favour. EG captures a flag with 40 seconds left in overtime to force a replay.
Game four-two, the Coliseum replay, ends in regulation time with an Extermination. Contra scores the second Allegiance flag when he runs it under the rocket side untouched. Down 1-2, Stellur answers back with a Triple Kill, which leads to EG’s second capture. No team looks in control, until Str8 SicK decides to prove his value to his new team. The EG flag lays in the grass next to the gravity lift, where Str8 SicK’s Overkill Extermination cleans up EG for the easy capture.
Unlike the Coliseum matches, game five on Eden – Slayer is never close. Contra extends the Allegiance lead to seven with the rocket launcher. The score separation forces efficient EG play, all the while the trail in kills. Allegiance never lose the lead and reverse sweep EG for a 3-2 series win.
Team Liquid vs. Team EnVyUs |EnVyUs wins 3-2
Going into Rig – Slayer down 0-1 in the series, Team EnVyUs puts their slaying power to work. The game plays out unlike other Slayer matches both teams throw multiple power weapons off the map. When nV protects their next sniper rifle, they take a late 45-40 lead. nV holds the bunker, so Team Liquid elects to wait for the next set of power weapons and power-ups. They hide outside around the shotgun and carbine, but their patience fails. nV win 50-42.
Game four on Coliseum – CTF favours Liquid and their efficient flag runners. With the game tied a two, Rayne grabs the nV flag and throws it from base-to-base. Penguin waits across the chasm on the Liquid bridge and catches the flag mid flight. The flag toss surprises nV as they scramble for kills. Mikwen kills a player on the catwalk, then looks across the map with the sniper rifle to stop the final capture.
As Liquid wait to respawn, Snip3down sprints out of their base, bringing a flag with him. As he jumps up to capture the game winning flag, Commonly stops him. He flies in, pulls the nV flag right from under Snip3down’s feet. Commonly snatches both the flag and the nV win. Liquid rallies the flag back and take Coliseum 3-2.
Despite the series shifting between teams, nV buries Liquid on Regret – Slayer. nV takes the series, winning 50-34 on the back of Pistola’s 17-7 performance.