San Francisco Shock 4 - Florida Mayhem 0
It wasn't pretty, but the San Francisco Shock took home a 4-0 sweep of the Florida Mayhem on Friday in the Overwatch League in Burbank, California.
This was an ugly series to watch, as both teams made plenty of mistakes throughout the series. Little miscues, like getting caught in an errant D.Va Self-Destruct, shooting at a tank trying to feed ultimate charge to their Mercy or poor ultimate usage plagued both sides, but that last point is what gave the Shock the edge. Florida's ultimate economy management was horrific; it often blew key DPS ultimates at the tail end of already-won fights or else pulled the trigger on support ultimates far too early. San Francisco, though, at least showed some discipline, giving it a massive advantage over the Mayhem.
San Francisco has a lot to learn and improve on from this series despite the 4-0 scoreline. Sure, the Shock can rely on DPS Andrej "babybay" Francisty to pick off targets as Widowmaker, but with struggling support Daniel "dhaK" Martinez getting frequently picked off early as Mercy, there's only so much babybay can do. Fortunately, dhaK did a better job of staying alive against Florida, and he earned Player of the Series overall, although that's not saying much considering the state of the Mayhem. Florida's mistakes, lack of coordination and a general absence of polish leave this team doomed to the bottom of the OWL standings and in dire need of something to kickstart this squad.
San Francisco will next take on the Los Angeles Gladiators at 9 p.m. ET on Wednesday, while the Florida Mayhem prepare to battle the New York Excelsior at 7 p.m. ET on Thursday.
-- Noah Waltzer
Seoul Dynasty 3 - Houston Outlaws 2
The Seoul Dynasty escaped from the Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California, with a 3-2 nailbiter of a series win against the Houston Outlaws on Friday.
Coming off a rough 4-0 loss to the London Spitfire, the Seoul Dynasty was determined to right the ship against a streaking Outlaws squad. With captain Ryu "ryujehong" Je-Hong back in the flex support role after missing Thursday's series, Seoul had an up-and-down performance, as its form wildly varied from map to map despite Houston missing a starter of its own because of illness, DPS Jiri "LiNkzr" Masalin.
On Junkertown and Eichenwalde, Seoul simply got steamrolled in the face of Houston's coordinated and methodical attack. Whenever Seoul got knocked down, though, it adapted, and it took Horizon Lunar Colony with a tremendous defensive hold on Point B. From there, the Dynasty's human highlight reel, DPS Kim "Fleta" Byung-Sun, took the Outlaws to school on Illios as Pharah, demolishing Houston with ease.
Houston certainly showed grit in this tough loss, with DPS Jake "Jake" Lyon giving his team plenty of offensive firepower while putting on a show against one of the best teams in the world. By now a beloved meme in the OWL, Jake's Junkrat was on fire against Seoul, forcing the series into Game 5 on Lijang Tower and into the final point on Command Center. Unfortunately for Houston, Seoul's core of ex-Lunatic-Hai members shined in the last map, particularly off-tank Kim "Zunba" Joon-Hyeok's Zarya, which decimated Houston with absurdly high energy and clutch bubbles. At the end of the day, while Houston looked good, Seoul made a definitive statement, stopping a potential skid down the standings against one of the hungriest teams in the league.
Seoul will now prepare to take on the Los Angeles Valiant at 11 p.m. ET on Wednesday, while the Houston Outlaws have another big test in the London Spitfire at 9 p.m. ET on Thursday.
-- Noah Waltzer
Boston Uprising 4 - Los Angeles Gladiators 0
The Boston Uprising swiftly cleaned out the Los Angeles Gladiators in a 4-0 series on Friday in the Overwatch League at the Blizzard Arena at Burbank, California.
With Boston on a bit of a roll in the final few weeks of the season, the Gladiators was simply no match for the Uprising. Boston utterly tore through the Gladiators' meager defenses thanks to the DPS duo of Jonathan "DreamKazper" Shanchez and Namju "Striker" Gwon cutting Gladiators support Benjamin "BigGoose" Ville Aapeli Isohanni off from the tanks he desperately needed to heal. In fact, that one tactic was the killing stroke, as pre-patch Mercy is still the linchpin of Overwatch League teams, and with BigGoose out of the fight so frequently, Gladiators was outmatched. Combine the heavy focus on taking out supports with tank partners Noh "Gamsu" Yeong-jin and Lucas "Note" Meissner pressuring LA's frontline, and you have the recipe for Boston's success.
The stomping began with Numbani, where Los Angeles failed to even get a second point thanks to Boston's patented ultra-aggressive dive overwhelming the Gladiators. On Boston's first attack, Note and Gamsu immediately seized LA's defenses on the high ground while DreamKazper and Striker blitzed the backline for an easy capture. As the series went on, Boston repeated this strategy with impunity; Los Angeles simply had no answer. The Gladiators tried to make a push on Dorado with DPS Joao "Hydration" Pedro Veloso de Goes Telles' Pharah avoiding the dive while doling out damage from the air. Unfortunately for the Gladiators, this didn't last for too long as DreamKazper switched to McCree to easily take out the Rocket Queen and end the series.
Boston Uprising will look to make it four straight against the Los Angeles Valiant at 3 p.m. ET on Saturday, while the Los Angeles Gladiators will next face the San Francisco Shock at 9 p.m. ET next Wednesday.
-- Christiaan Kutlik