Reigning world champions Sentinels won the VCT Stage 3 Challenger Playoffs, and progressed as the best team from NA to Masters 3 Berlin. They defeated 100 Thieves convincingly in a best of five matchups and went ahead to be clear favourites from North America.
100 Thieves have already qualified for Masters 3 Berlin in the Challenger Playoffs, and met their old rivals once again in the Grand Finals.
The Upper Finals also featured these two heavyweights from North America, and it was all about bragging rights. The two teams have faced each other numerous times and Sentinels have proved their dominance over 100 Thieves repeatedly.
Here are the map results and individual scores from the Grand Finals of VCT Stage 3 Challenger Playoffs NA.
Sentinels vs. 100 Thieves - Grand Finals
Sentinels were in good shape coming into this matchup off a 2-0 victory against 100 Thieves in the upper finals. Their team was prepared to not lose any match in the Challenger Playoffs to get the #1 seed for Masters 3 Berlin.
Similarly, 100 Thieves had great momentum from their lower finals victory against Envy. Previously, they defeated XSET and Luminosity without dropping a single map in the tournament.
Although the match wasn't a do or die situation for either team, it was all about the territorial rivalry between these two giants from North America. A rivalry that started during the First Strike tournament, and has grown over the subsequent competitions.
Fans expected to see a lot from Tyson "TenZ" Ngo and Peter "Asuna" Mazuryk, as both of them are dominating the tournament with their kills.
This match was indeed a clash of the North American titans and neither team wanted to lose. However, Sentinels came out on top and show why they are indeed the world champions.
Map 1 - Bind
The first map for VCT Stage 3 Challenger Playoffs Grand Finals was Bind. TenZ, known for his versatility with Duelists on this map, chose to play with Reyna.
Sick played Raze and Dapr chose the Controller role to play Viper, while Zombs played Astra. Team captain ShahZam settled on Sova to go ahead with a two-duelist combination.
Asuna took Raze for 100 Thieves, while Hiko played Breach and Nitr0 picked up the Controller role with Astra. Ethan selected Skye, and the surprise pick came from Steel who chose Jett.
The first map went horribly for 100 Thieves as Sentinels started with a 2-0 lead. After nearly shattering their economy, Sentinels made sure that 100 Thieves could only put up four rounds.
The first half ended with a resounding 8-4 scoreline, and 100 Thieves tried their best for a comeback. They did their best to recover from 8-4 to 10-10. However, Sentinels closed the map 13-11 as TenZ lead the kill race with 26 kills, followed by Dapr at 22.
Ethan and Steel managed to get 20 kills each as Sentinels scraped past their fiercest regional rivals.
Scoreline - SEN (13) - (11) 100 Thieves
Map 2 - Breeze
The second map, Breeze, was much more competitive as 100 Thieves sought to take revenge for the first map.
100 Thieves changed the lineup as Hiko played Viper and Nitr0 selected Omen. Steel returned to his Sentinel role as Cypher while Asuna picked Reyna. Ethan retained Skye and this was 100 Thieves best lineup on Breeze so far.
On the other hand, Sentinels switched their roles as ShahZam played Sova, TenZ selected Jett, Dapr chose Killjoy and Sick picked Skye, while Dapr retained Viper.
The first two rounds were swept away by 100 Thieves who were looking to close out the map quickly. However, Sentinels retaliated with their strategies and put up a 7-5 before the first half ended.
The second half started with a bang as 100 Thieves took the first two rounds off the bat. After that, the First Strike champions cruised into an easy victory by controlling all the essential areas of the map.
TenZ gave an inspiring individual performance as he racked up 22 kills against 100 Thieves, but the star of the show was Asuna who led 100 Thieves with 19 kills.
Scoreline - SEN (11) - (13) 100 Thieves
Map 3 - Haven
The third map was crucial and Sentinels were prepared to go all out to win this map. Haven has always been a strong map for the reigning champions.
100 Thieves lined up with Steel playing KAY/O, Hiko playing Sova, Asuna on Jett, Nitr0 on Omen and Ethan on Skye.
Sentinels brought their strongest lineup for Haven with Sick on Phoenix, ShahZam on Sova, TenZ on Jett, Zombs playing Astra and Dapr playing Killjoy.
Sentinels took a resounding 4-0 lead right off the start and crippled 100 Thieves' economy. This allowed them to control the entire first half which ended in a one-sided 9-3 scoreline.
The defending world champions continued their onslaught won the first three rounds of the second half. Eventually, they closed the map with a 13-6 scoreline.
Sick got the most kills for Sentinels on the map with 20 frags, while Steel could only manage 13 for 100 Thieves.
Scoreline - SEN (13) - (6) 100 Thieves
Map 4 - Split
Sentinels beat 100 Thieves 13-2 on Split in the Upper Finals. Thus, everyone expected the outcome of this map before it even began.
The world champions lived up to those expectations and went in with a brilliant lineup. Sentinels beat 100 Thieves 13-2 on Split in the Upper Finals. Thus, everyone expected the outcome of this map before it even began.
The world champions lived up to those expectations and went in with a brilliant lineup. TenZ and ShahZam took the duelist role to play Reyna and Jett respectively. Dapr played Cypher while Sick selected Sage. Zombs retained Astra as the only controller going into the fourth map.
100 Thieves had Asuna playing Jett, Hiko on Viper, Steel on KAY/O, Nitro on Astra, and Ethan retained Skye.
The first half was disastrous for 100 Thieves as Sentinels looked to repeat the same result from the Upper Finals. Split is perhaps Sentinels' strongest map as they tend to win almost every matchup on this one.
The first half ended with a 9-3 scoreline in favour of Sentinels, who convincingly closed the map in the second half. The final scoreline only shows how the defending champions are ready for Masters 3 Berlin.
Scoreline - SEN (13) - (5) 100 Thieves