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Valorant9 months agoTeh "GravityWillFall" Wi-Liam

LOUD move on to the final four after defeating EDward Gaming at VCT Champions 2023

It got LOUD at the Shrine Expo Hall in Los Angeles despite having zero fans in attendance.

LOUD have kept their momentum going after they defeated EDward Gaming 2-1 to move on to the final four at VCT Champions 2023. That win puts LOUD in a prime position to be the first and only team to win back to back championships. Of course, there are still a few more obstacles to go through like Fnatic, whom they will meet in the lower bracket semifinal to determine who ends up in fourth.

As for EDG, they leave VCT Champions 2023 in fifth/sixth place alongside DRX. This will be the team's second top six finish in a row after Masters Tokyo and a much better showing at Champions this year after their group stage exit last season. While it looked like EDG had the better of LOUD, the defending champions made sure that they would live to fight another day. This is despite EDG having a better record on Bind than LOUD.

The first half was back-and-forth between EDG and LOUD with neither team able to get a foothold early on. While LOUD won the pistol round and had a four-round win streak, EDG did will to keep the score even at 6-6 by winning crucial back-to-back rounds on three separate occasions.

However, the game opened up much more in the second half with EDG taking three rounds in a row. Those three rounds also featured a 4K for Yongkang "ZmjjKK" Zheng. Unfortunately, LOUD would respond in kind by taking the next four rounds in a row. This also came with an ace from Cauan "cauanzin" Pereira as well as a clutch kill on ZmjjKK, who was in mid-defuse. 

But it was EDG who would have the last laugh, taking the last four out of five rounds away from LOUD. Both Senxu "Nobody" Wang and Zhang "Smoggy" Zhao had crucial contributions to the map win, having a 4K each in the 22nd and 24th round respectively. This gave EDG the advantage in the series, knowing that one more win would seal their fate in the final four.

LOUD were not going to take this sitting down, taking the second map to their pick of Ascent, which they had a track record of 2-1 in the tournament. And it was EDG who had a decent start by taking the first two rounds. But LOUD showed just why Ascent is their map by winning the next six rounds in a row. EDG would go on to win just four rounds in the first half to LOUD's eight, giving the latter a strong advantage heading into the second half.

And right from the get-go, LOUD picked up four straight rounds to instantly put them on match-point. While EDG managed to pull one back, LOUD held on to take the following round the secure the second map and ensured it went to Haven. Both teams shared a 1-0 record on Haven during the LAN so it was anyone's guess as to who would take it.

Much like the first map, Haven saw both teams try to take control of the first half but ended up in the break at 6-6. Neither team could get a strong enough foothold into the map with EDG taking two three-round streaks at separate times while LOUD secured the pistol and subsequent round followed by a four-round win streak.

Felipe "Less" Basso in particular was crucial to LOUD keeping the first half evenly contested with two four-kill games in the first and ninth round. LOUD shifted into another gear in the second half with five straight round wins. Erick "aspas" Santos came through with a one-versus-two clutch in the 16th round to dig the dagger even deeper into EDG. While they managed to respond with three straight rounds of their own to make it 11-9, it was cauanzin who came to LOUD's rescue with his second clutch four-kill game in the 21st round with his first coming in the 13th.

But EDG would just not budge and took the 22nd and 23rd round to ensure it goes down to the wire. Sadly, EDG could not force it into overtime as LOUD managed to secure the last and final round to put themselves through to the final four. And with that, we bid farewell to EDG in another fifth/sixth place finish at a VCT international LAN event; a strong start to arguably China's best team at the moment.

Teh "GravityWillFall" Wi-LiamA failed pro-am gamer turned into a filthy casual with an unhealthy obsession for keyboards and sneakers.

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