In week 1 day 3 of the LPL Spring Split, Suning Gaming wins against Maple and SwordArT has a solid debut. Team Invictus takes the overall lead of the 2019 LPL spring split with a second triumph. Here’s the breakdown of the matches.
Day 3 of the opening week for the 2019 LPL spring split marked the much anticipated debut of Suning‘s Gaming big offseason signings. Former Flash Wolves stars Huang “Maple” Yi-Tang and Hu “SwordArt” Shuo-Chieh. The team got off to a slow start, but managed to get back to its feet in order to score a comeback win over Vici Gaming. The second best-of-three of the day saw the reigning world champions from Invictus Gaming score their second win in as many series.
Suning Gaming shakes off a bad first game to take down Vici Gaming in three sets
Back in 2018, longtime Flash Wolves superstar jungler Hung “Karsa” Hao-Hsuan became the first ever LMS import to play in the 2019 LPL. This is after signing with powerhouse Royal Never Give Up. Suning Gaming followed suit for 2019. Signing two of Karsa’s former teammates; mid laner Maple and support SwordArT. The team also added Rogue Warriors AD Carry Han “Smlz” Jin to the lineup. This drew plenty of attention before the start of the season. Despite a disappointing Demacia Cup appearance, Suning entered this split with high expectations. Things got off to an level start following a comeback win over Vici Gaming.
Game 1: Vici stomps Suning to take the leadSmlz went for a Viktor AD Carry pick, a strategy that SinoDragon Gaming had tried to execute the day before with no success. Much like EDward Gaming did, Vici went with a Xayah-Rakan combo, winning an early trade and forcing a Flash out of Smlz less than one minute into the game. The pairing made good use of the advantage, going all-in for a second trade as AD Carry Ding “Puff” Wang grabbed the first blood. Both teams continuously rotated towards the bottom side, as their primary win conditions were there. In one of those plays, Su “SouthWind” Zhi-Lin walked away from a 3-on-3 fight hanging on to 11 HP. Despite the early advantage in Vici’s favor, things remained relatively even, with Suning even holding a minor gold lead.
Vici, however, used its momentary control over the river to secure two elemental drakes. When Suning tried to contest the second buff, an Infernal, Vici were more than happy to commit. The team scored an ace, with Chen “Jay” Bo (Galio) being the only loss on their side. VG turned that into a turret, taking down the bottom lane tower and going for a lane swap towards the top side, securing the Rift Herald and three more kills.
26 Minute Mark
At the 26 minute mark, Vici had both its top and mid lane waves pushing into Suning’s territory, which allowed the team to go for a Baron call. With Smlz too far behind with four deaths, SN lacked a damage dealer to safely contest the call. Suning did commit to a steal, but the attempt failed. VG scored another ace, secured the buff and a second Infernal drake while building a solid 8,000 lead in gold.
Vici used its Baron buff to take down all the lane turrets on Suning’s side before slowing the game down to wait for a second Baron spawn. VG picked off Xie “XiaoAL” Zhen-Ying (Urgot) and went for the buff. It then went for a final push, sealing game 1 in just under 35 minutes.
Game 2: Suning breaks through for an quick winBoth teams went for some intense trades early on, although nothing came out of it. Vici’s jungler Li “Aix” Yang (Camille) went for a risky Infernal drake, with Suning’s scuttle crab spotting him. SN immediately collapsed, securing to kills to open the score and stealing the buff. The two teams proceeded to find kills all over the map, with VG securing an Infernal drake along the way to make up for the early loss. All three SG lanes slowly built an advantage, ultimately succeeding in taking down Vici’s top turret for the bonus gold. It was all the team needed to capitalize, freeing the players to rotate around the map and clear out the remaining outer turrets.
Suning picked a good fight inside Vici’s jungle, catching their opponents in a bad spot. XiaoAL easily reached VG’s backline, with his team completing the clean-up and securing four kills. SN opened up the mid lane, taking down the inhibitor. Suning forced a second fight at the exact same spot, catching Vici out while their players tried to secure some vision while taking SN’s wards. Walking away with two kills, including one onto Aix, Suning had enough space to go for the Baron buff. After only 24 minutes of play, SN successfully broke into Vici’s base to end the game and force the tie-breaker.
Game 3: Suning wins in dominant fashionWith most bans focused on supports, SouthWind was forced into an off-meta Zilean pick. Smlz (Ezreal) and SwordArT (Tahm Kench) used the opportunity to win an early trade, forcing a Flash out of Vici’s support and allowing Yang “H4cker” Zhi-Hao (Olaf) to finish him off for the first blood.
It quickly snowballed into a dominant showing by Suning. With the bottom turret going down, Smlz and SwordArT were free to roam and help the other lanes. Up seven turrets, ten thousand gold and an inhibitor 24 minutes into the game, SN had plenty of space to go for a game-deciding Baron buff. After 27 minutes of play, Suning forced one final fight inside their opponent’s base, coming out with a win to complete the comeback.
Invictus sweeps another series, leads the standings
Two series and two wins for the reigning world champions. Invictus Gaming’s newest victim was OMG, as IG now has an impressive 38-2 regular season record dating back to last spring.
Game 1: IG comes out on top of a kill fiesta 2019 LPLFirst blood went to OMG’s jungler Zhou “l3est16” Zhi-Li (Gragas) on an early mid lane gank. IG responded with a beautiful play up top, as Gao “Ning” Zhen-Ning (Zac) and Lee “Duke” Ho-seong executed a perfectly coordinated turret dive to take down rookie top laner Hu “Ale” Jia-Le (Camille) and 13est16. While OMG kept finding kills around the map, Invictus used its bottom lane advantage as Yu “JackeyLove” Wen-Bo (Lucian) and Wang “Baolan” Liu-Yi (Alistar) had little trouble going up against yet another poorly executed Viktor AD Carry pick. With JackeyLove and Baolan finding plenty of space to roam, IG destroyed OMG’s mid lane turret for the bonus gold.
While the fights went into OMG’s favor, IG did a better job controlling the map. The two teams danced around the Baron for five minutes, until Ning executed a perfect slingshot launch, landing near OMG’s bottom lane pairing Li “Chelly” Yu-Zhou (Viktor) and Liu “Five” Shi-Yu (Tahm Kench), capturing both inside his ultimate to create the two-men advantage IG needed to go for the Baron. With the buff in hands, IG found its fight at the top side of the map. The team scored an ace, with Ning being the only loss on their side, and went for the win after 28 minutes of play.
Game 2: Another fiesta, another win for Invictus Gaming 2019 LPLIG’s superstar top laner Kang “TheShy” Seung-lok (Irelia) came in for his first game in 2019, and right off the bat forced a amazing 1-on-1 trade against Ale (Jax). With both players really low on HP, TheShy went for a level 4 turret dive to secure the first blood. Much like game 1, OMG did a better job in the kills department, with Ale notably giving TheShy a very hard time. The Invictus top laner however would get the last laugh, as he and Ning earned the bonus gold for the game’s first turret.
OMG had a better response this time, taking down two towers on IG’s side and two drakes, building a small lead. IG turned things around with a great fight around the bottom side of the map, scoring an ace and adding an Infernal drake. Another fight, this time inside OMG’s jungle, resulted in another four kills going IG’s way along with the Baron buff. OMG stood its ground, repealing Invictus’ Baron-powered push. But Invictus created enough space to set up a second Baron. A brilliant play by Chelly (Kai’sa) stopped IG just short of the inhibitors, keeping OMG in the game.
To the end
The decisive fight happened around the river, with IG coming out on top with four kills to two thanks to a beautiful outplay by JackeyLove (Xayah). Still holding on to a Baron buff, the reigning world champions finally managed to take down the inhibitors, although the team still had to back off in order to avoid overextending inside their opponent’s territory. Invictus regrouped for on final push, taking down OMG’s bottom lane turret and inhibitor. After 31 minutes and an impressive 46 kills between the two teams, IG completed the sweep at the 2019 LPL.