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Gale Force eSports dominate Heroes of the Storm NA Summer Regional

Judy Heflin's picture
Judy Heflin
Content and Communications Manager
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Over the weekend, the top eight North American Heroes of the Storm teams converged in Burbank, California to battle for prestige and prizes in front of a sold-out studio audience. Thanks to all who tuned in for the broadcast or attended the live show, and congratulations to Gale Force eSports for taking first place and earning a spot at the upcoming Summer Global Championship!

Before the first match even began, Gale Force’s David “Roflcopter” Young announced, “We’re going to Sweden!” This was the first of many bold claims made by Gale Force eSports that turned out to be true.

GROUP STAGES

The weekend started with frontrunners Team Naventic against Tempo Storm, who were the last to qualify for the ESL North America Summer Regional, battling in Group A. With a seat at the Summer Global Championship already in hand, Naventic’s Stafford “McIntyre” McIntyre explained the team’s presence at the second Regional, saying, “We’re here to crush dreams,” and that’s exactly what they did.

The powerhouse team first took out Tempo Storm and then Astral Authority, both with clean 2-0 sweeps to make it out of the group stages. Astral Authority were then sent to the losers bracket where they beat Panda Global 2-1, advancing to the semifinals.

The Group B matches kicked off with Brain Power (formerly COGnitive Gaming) up against Cloud9, who, after failing to replicate their past success since winning the Blizzcon Championship in 2015, were under a lot of pressure to perform well with a new roster and prove themselves once again as champions.

Brain Power won 2-1 and sent Cloud9 to the losers bracket where they were able to beat Team Name Change. In the losers bracket finals, Brain Power beat Cloud9 again and advanced to the semifinals, but Cloud9’s chances of earning a seat in Sweden were not quite gone. If Team Naventic repeated their DreamHack success and came in first, the second-place team would then battle Cloud9 for the second North American spot at the Summer Global Championship.

Gale Force eSports were the ones who sent Brain Power to the losers bracket. Preceding the early matches, Gale Force’s Manuel “Fury” Medina commented, “We’re not at all nervous about getting out of the group stages. We're very confident that we'll make it to the playoffs.”

Gale Force mirrored Naventic’s group stage success, taking out Team Name Change and Brain Power 2-0 and 2-1, respectively. Heroes of the Dorm 2016 winner and Gale Force eSports shotcaller Michael “MichaelUdall” Udall had said the day before, “Just like dorms, we're gonna do another sweet 2-0.”

SEMIFINALS

Team Naventic continued their dominant performance, beating Brain Power 2-0 and advancing to the grand finals to set the stage for another tournament victory.

Astral Authority came out strong in the early game of the semifinals, but things turned around as Gale Force eSports took an aggressive Game 1 win after hitting the later levels. Game 2 started in a similar fashion, with Astral Authority showing early dominance.

In a second huge shift, Gale Force took Game 2 to advance to the grand finals and battle Naventic for the first place prize of US$25,000 and a seat at the Summer Global Championship in Sweden.

FINALS

With Roflcopter’s prediction that Naventic were “gonna get bodied” by Gale Force eSports in the grand finals still hanging in the air, the top two teams began their battle. Naventic banned Brightwing, Stefan “Akaface” Anderson’s best-known hero, but let Khalif “Khroen” Hashim bust out his legendary Li-Ming. Gale Force came out strong from the beginning of Game 1.

Naventic’s Christopher “Zuna” Buechter said before the weekend that, “We're in it to win it. I'm gonna go hard. If we play our best, we can't lose. It's impossible,” but Gale Force did the impossible and took them down again in Game 2.

True to their word, Gale Force eSports dominated Naventic, winning the grand finals 3-0 and punching their ticket to Sweden! Watch out for these fan-favorites as they travel to the Summer Global Championship to represent North America alongside Naventic.

Congratulations once again to Gale Force eSports and good luck to all the teams in the upcoming Summer Global Championship!

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