After a disappointing start of the season, Counter Logic Gaming took its first victory on Saturday in a marathon game against FlyQuest, outlasting their opponent in one of the longest games in the LCS this year.
While the struggling CLG opted for a heavily scaling composition, they were able to secure the first blood in the match with a three-man dive top seven minutes in, with the kill going to Tristan “PowerOfEvil” Schrage’s Orianna. Despite that, FlyQuest was much more proactive on the map, pushing their opponents and getting a lead through farming and tower plating gold. They maintained the advantage as the mid-game began and secured gotten all outer towers by the 20-minute mark, enjoying an over 4K gold lead.
Still, CLG was able to slow the game down and prevent their secondary wave of towers or an early baron from going down. Even though the gold difference was slowly growing, they did not give FlyQuest a teamfight where they would have the edge. Eventually, the balance of power evened out, and a big standoff near the elder drake 36 minutes in ended in an impasse, as FlyQuest wanted to take it to add to their three elemental drakes but had to be wary of their enemies’ poke. Instead, as the teams reset CLG themselves opted for the baron a minute later, letting their opponents get the elder in what they saw as a beneficial trade. It was a game of inches, and when Counter Logic Gaming got a kill on Omran “V1per” Shoura 41 minutes in, they were able to push the mid lane and get the first inhibitor of the game. With this pressure, they rotated towards an elder drake of their own, took the second baron afterwards and used it to take a second inhibitor.
Video credit: Riot Games
As FlyQuest defended last intact lane shortly afterwards, they seemed to have finally found an advantageous fight and sought to punish their retreating opponents. However, CLG kited back successfully and when Lucas “Santorin” Tao Kilmer Larsen committed to the fight, they swiftly burst him down, before counterattacking to get three more and ending the game after just under 49 minutes of play
It was a much more convincing game for CLG than those in their first week, and here they were able to stall the game and hang on. While it was an effective move, it is debatable if such a passive strategy can work against every opponent.
Thumbnail image credit: Riot Games