A Quick Rise to Victory: eUnited Gears Claim Their First 2K

By: Julian “Sspace” Alexander

After a disappointing eighth place showing at MLG Dallas for eUnited Gears of War, it was time for a change heading into 2018. The roster needed a different look and direction to push the team to the highest tier of competition in the new season.

Players Kevin “Soto” Soto, Ryan “Wildebeast” Gant, Thomas “Dispensa” Dispensa and Michael “Zerpting” Rodriguez departed, with Chris “Lava” Anderson and Chris “Affinity” Curren remaining as player and coach, respectively. The two were joined by former Allegiance players Alec “Shock” Collins, Jeff “Jerppy” Szewczak, Kevin “Rezik” Ibarra and Joshua “Krash” Galan, who placed fourth in Dallas after an impressive run that included a victory over OpTic Gaming in pool play.

The transition for the players, says Krash, has been an easy one.

“Most of us have been really close friends for over six years now so that really helps with the chemistry of the team,” he said. “The move to eUnited was very welcoming by the fans, players and staff.”

With the changes, eUnited Gears seems reinvigorated as they have already accomplished something that no other iteration has: win an MLG 2K tournament. Not only did they find victory and 2000 pro points at their feet this past Sunday, the roster did so by once again taking down the MLG Dallas champions OpTic, this time under eUnited and new leadership.

According to Shock, the team were confident in their ability and preparation heading into the competition.

“We were feeling great as usual,” he said. “We are very confident against every team and we know we always have a good chance of winning.”

That confidence was well placed, as the tournament saw the squad blasting through adversaries, such as Motive8 in Semifinals, on their way to the showdown with the Green Wall.

As each match ended and victory continued to come to the team, the feeling between each member, says Shock, was that Sunday was one of those days you just knew you were the best team playing.

“Everything is great and the team chemistry/vibe is great,” he said. “…our tournament play is great and when we are all 5 on fire, we are the best team in the game.”

The finals were hotly contested, going all three maps. eUnited took map one, then OpTic fired back clinching what looked like a decisive map two. However, the new boys were far from deterred. Resiliency was the theme of map three for the team. They would go up two rounds, OpTic would battle back. Grab another few rounds, then came their opponents storming again. Eventually they found themselves at a 6-6 impasse. The next few moments decided who would take all the glory this week, if this new team could truly call themselves exceptional or if the Green Wall was still too treacherous to traverse.

That conundrum was quickly resolved. All questions were answered and all doubts came to a halt when eUnited Gears opened up the final round dominating the map, winning what seemed like every opening fight and taking control of all angles and hill points. Faster than one could say “OpTic has fallen”, they had achieved complete command of every hill and reigned victorious over the world’s best.

For Lava, this victory is quite the important one.

“Winning eUniteds first 2K felt great, as the last 2K I had won was with OpTic before I got dropped over a year prior,” he explained. “I had gotten close with previous rosters but had never actually won one and finally doing so just showed me what we’re capable of when we play our game.”

Indeed, that year was a long one, as it had been some time since the multi-title champion had tasted a win of such magnitude within a roster so talented.

“This new lineup is undoubtedly the best and most talented roster I’ve been on since my release from OpTic,” said Lava. “It’s refreshing to team alongside 4 other crazy good and sound players.”

His place within the team continues to evolve, as he works together with his teammates to find every avenue for victory in each map they play and situation they find themselves in.

“My role is essentially to help Krash lead the squad in-game,” said Lava. “Calling rotations or pushes and sort of analyzing the game as I see it to try and decide what the best move would be for us in the game.”

When allowed to play their game, a staunch combination of skill driven opening fights and cohesive tactical rotations, the roster is elegantly turbulent, having all the inner makings to compete for titles this season. Something Lava is well aware of.

“I would be surprised if we don’t manage to show up and win at least 2 championships this season.” he said.

Looking forward to the upcoming LAN, the Gears Pro Circuit Mexico City Open, the momentum is in the corner of the eUnited team and the vibes throughout the camp are positive and optimistic, yet equally realistic when it comes to practice, says Krash.

“Our practice for Mexico is coming along really well,” he explained. “We’re finding imperfections in our gameplay and perfecting them. Once Mexico comes around we should be dominant.”

If the last few weeks of eUnited Gears of War play are telling of the future, the team’s upcoming LAN is something to be very excited about.

 

Header Image Credit: Joe Brady