By: Zachary Lange
In a weekend filled with strong starts and technical issues, eUnited failed to qualify for a championship bracket in both Counter Strike and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds at DreamHack Austin.
Both teams traveled to Austin to compete in tournaments with $100,000 prize pools each respectively. Also for both teams, it was the first time competing on American soil at a LAN event.
Counter Strike barely misses cut for playoffs
eUnited Counter Strike began the weekend strong at DreamHack Open Austin with a best-of-one victory over Fragsters, 16-9. The team was led by high fragging power by Michael “dapr” Gulino,” who led the match with 24 kills.
Later Friday evening, a variety of technical issues inside the Austin Convention Center forced a lengthy technical pause in their second matchup of the day against Heroic. eUnited had 9-5 round count advantage in the best-of-one series, and was about to claim their tenth round before an abrupt server issue led to the game being on hold for well over an hour.
A victory against Heroic would have vaulted eUnited directly into the playoffs, instead, a 10-16 defeat knocked them to the losers bracket.
“It was super frustrating,” said coach Jared “osorandom” Hartman. “I think because we ended up waiting so long to play and then losing rounds (after the game began again) we ended up losing a lot of the momentum that we had in our communications.”
On Saturday, it was a rematch against the Danes of Fragsters in a best-of-three series to decide who would claim a playoff spot. In Games 1 and 2, eUnited jumped to a quick advantage, leading by a score of 9-6 at the end of the first half in both games.
But only once was eUnited able to take advantage of the early leads. A Game 1 defeat on Nuke, 12-16, forced the squad to rally off two straight wins.
They were halfway there after a Game 2 victory on Mirage, 16-7. Unfortunately, a 4-16 loss on Cache was the final blow to the team, knocking them out of contention.
While disappointed, Will “dazzLe” Loafman sees room to grow as a team, and in person bonding is an important first step.
“The time spent together (in person) is really valuable for our team,” dazzLe said. “We also took a map off that is ranked higher than us (Fragsters, No. 25 in HLTV rankings) so that’s definitely good.”
On the series rematch that resulted in a 1-2 defeat to Fragsters only one player, dapr, maintained a positive kill-death ratio. Over the course of the entire weekend, it was dapr who oftentimes opened the round with a kill onto the opposition.
“He played insane,” dazzLe said. “I honestly feel bad for him because he played so damn well that we should not have lost when he does that well.”
PUBG fails to qualify for finals
In a hectic weekend that was filled with technical issues and delays, eUnited PUBG failed to make the 16-team finals.
After barely missing the cut on qualifying straight to the main event online, eUnited went through a bring-your-own-computer open bracket on Friday and Saturday in the hopes of claiming one of five last chance qualifier spots.
However, due to several delays inside the tournament venue, including power outages and internet outages, players experienced prolonged waiting times which hurt momentum.
After a long delay of over four hours in between Games 1 and 2 of the final qualification round there was little gas left in the tank. eUnited placed seventh, two spots short of making it to mainstage.
Despite the adversity, Jeffrey “Microfry” Gonzalez felt that this event prepares them to deal with unforeseeable issues in the future.
“It was a good test as a team,” Microfry said. “We didn’t rage at each other, we made mistakes that were visible, a couple of us made mistakes that cost us the game but we’re not mad at each other because we know that wouldn’t have happened with proper sleep.”
In the future, the team would like to work on communication as a whole and map rotations.
“We have to play ahead,” Microfry said. “Not just one circle, but multiple circles ahead.”
For eUnited Counter Strike, the team will have a short break before a qualification process for the FACEIT London Major that takes place in September. In addition, the team will also be in qualifications for other upcoming events, including future DreamHack events.
Season 8 of the ESL Pro League begins on September 18.
eUnited PUBG will have a short turn around period to practice more online before a trip to Burbank, California from June 22-24 to earn a trip to Berlin, Germany for the 2018 PUBG Global Invitational.