Surging European squad Alliance finished their Group Stage campaign with a 2-0 sweep over North American squad J.Storm, 2-0.

Game one

Alliance opened the series with a strong tri-core of Phantom Lancer for Nikolay “Nikobaby” Nikolov, a mid Magnus for Linus “Limmp” Blomdin, and Brewmaster for Neta “33” Shapira.

Meanwhile, J.Storm opted for a ranged-core duo of Drow Ranger for David “Moo” Hull and Storm Spirit for Leon “Nine” Kirilin to try and outmaneuver Alliance’s facerush lineup.

The laning phase ended with both teams on relatively even footing, as their respective carries enjoyed uncontested farm while their offlaners struggled. However, Alliance was able to win a drawn-out engagement in the bottom lane that propelled them into the lead.

J.Storm managed to slow the game down, courtesy of three huge kills by their bottom tier-one tower, to give their cores more time to farm up and give themselves a fighting chance.

But Alliance methodically took over the map and overwhelmed J.Storm’s attempts to get a good fight, which let the European squad eventually take the first game of the series in just under 40 minutes.

Game two

J.Storm looked to bounce back in game two with a tri-core of Monkey King for Moo, Nature’s Prophet for Nine, and Brewmaster for Brax. Alliance drafted a tri-core for themselves too, with Nikobaby on a safelane Dragon Knight, Limmp on a mid Magnus, and 33 on an offlane Viper.

Both teams spent much of the early laning phase switching their lane setups around to try and get an advantage, but both teams came out on relatively even footing.

In the mid-game J.Storm tried to go on the offensive with multiple forays into Alliance’s jungle, but ended up getting punished for it, and giving Alliance a significant lead.

J.Storm showed signs of life by winning a fight by the Rosh pit, but their chances at a comeback evaporated when Limmp snatched the Aegis from under their noses and led Alliance in wiping out their team. The scrappy North American squad tried to hold on as long as they could, but Alliance wiped them time after time until the GG was called

With their win, Alliance finish with a 9-1 group stage record and take sole possession of the top spot of Group A from Team Secret.

J.Storm finish with a 2-8 record and have been eliminated from the tournament.

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