XSET defeat FaZe Clan, qualify for their first international LAN
XSET FaZe Clan
Provided by Riot Games.

XSET defeat FaZe Clan, qualify for their first international LAN

XSET are finally top two in North American VALORANT

XSET defeated FaZe Clan 3-1 in the lower bracket final of the VALORANT Champions Tour North America Stage 2 Challengers tournament, qualifying for Stage 2 Masters in Copenhagen. This marks the first time XSET’s VALORANT team are going to an international tournament despite consistent success in the region. As for FaZe Clan, their lower bracket run ends here, despite a great return to form in Stage 2 Challengers after missing out on Stage 1 Challengers.

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Split puts FaZe in the lead

Starting on Split, XSET won the pistols, but the rounds were traded very early on. Some key changes between the teams’ compositions included a Neon, KAY/O and Breach from Faze over a Viper, Skye and Raze from XSET. To start, FaZe held their own against a team that was close to taking OpTic Gaming to map five the other day. The biggest streak of round wins did stay with XSET, but they entered halftime only up 7-5.

FaZe then won the pistols on their defense, and an attempted slow push from XSET was shut down to tie the game at 7-7. Quan “dicey” Tran led the lobby as the match went on, seven more kills than the best player on XSET at the 7-7 tie. Taking the lead afterwards from a Kevin “poised” Ngo 3k, XSET tried to tie it again with rifles. Then, Phat “supamen” Le also got a 3k, calculated aggression working out great for FaZe. XSET finally stopped that run down 10-8, with Matthew “Cryocells” Panganiban’s finishing 2k forcing a timeout at 10-9. Faze responded with a poised 3k of their own to stay ahead, with a flawless round to make it 11-9. Despite a 4k from Cryocells, dicey remained top of the lobby and FaZe got the map 13-11.

Breeze brings XSET back in

On the second map, needing a win, XSET decided to run Cypher and Jett over the Chamber. It didn’t matter much in their defense pistols loss, going down 3-0 before winning their first round. Despite the good performances on the XSET side, FaZe Clan just knew when to push and what corners to play. Down 6-4, back-to-back 2v1 clutches from Jordan “AYRIN” He, including a surprising wallbang, put XSET in a even position with FaZe — the teams were tied 6-6 at the half.

A great pistols round coming off of a Cryocells 3k put them in their first lead of the map. Cryocells continued his hot streak with an ace to make it 9-7. When the rest of the team stepped up alongside him, the map was over. When XSET hit map point up 12-7, FaZe fought back to get a couple of rounds. It proved to be a fake comeback, as XSET won the map 13-10.

Icebox brings a close overtime map

FaZe won pistols on their defense, but a force buy from XSET pays out to make it 1-1. Cryocells on Chamber kept his form from Breeze, hitting a 3-1 lead with six kills and only two deaths. A knife kill the round after from Cryocells onto fellow Chamber Andrej “babybay” Francisty was salt on the wound. With a flawless round on the way to a 9-3 half, XSET remained on top.

However, FaZe won their first two rounds on their attack and built up some momentum. Enough so that dicey helped lead FaZe to a 9-9 tie, no rounds lost so far on their attack. Zachary “zekken” Patrone finally won XSET their first round on defense, back in the lead at 10-9. At round 22, both teams throw down a Viper’s pit on B site leading up to a 1v1. FaZe won it to tie the series 11-11. After taking the lead at 12-11, the map went to overtime.

FaZe yet again took a lead, off of a dicey push down the zipline on A site defense getting two kills. But XSET fought right back, extending overtime. Second time around, XSET got the lead, but they also lost it. It wasn’t until XSET got the two rounds at 16-14 to win the map and get the lead in the series, preventing the 9-3 curse.

Ascent brings it home for XSET

Just as Ascent began with XSET winning the first two rounds, FaZe experienced a power outage that delayed the match for a considerable time. Thankfully, this was the only game of the day; the delay didn’t push any other teams’ times back. When the power came back, FaZe got their first round on the board. Despite that, XSET took a lead and kept it afterwards. On round seven, supamen got four kills but couldn’t stop a defuse in a 1v1. It ended up with XSET up at halftime, 9-3.

On XSET’s attack with a decent lead, they won pistols to hit double digits. Much like maps and matches before, the power of Cryocells on Jett was too much for XSET’s opponents to handle. XSET ended up winning the map 13-4, and the series over FaZe Clan 3-1. They will face OpTic Gaming for the VCT NA 2022 Stage 2 Challengers title, but they are finally in an international competition.

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Michael Czar
Polish-Canadian game enthusiast. I've been entrenched in gaming for as long as I can remember, with my first game being Pokemon Yellow and my most played games being Borderlands 2 and Overwatch. I have a degree in Film Studies, but writing about esports just makes my job all the better.