VCT Masters Reykjavík Day 8: OpTic, LOUD to meet in upper bracket finals

OpTic Gaming's Jaccob
OpTic Gaming's Jaccob "yay" Whiteaker and LOUD's Erick "aspas" Santos led their teams to victory against DRX and G2 Esports, respectively, in Day 8 of the VALORANT Champions Tour Stage 1 Masters tournament in Reykjavík, Iceland. OpTic and LOUD will soon face off in the upper bracket finals. (Photo: Riot Games via VALORANT Esports) (Riot Games via VALORANT Esports)

Things are heating up in Day 8 of the 2022 VALORANT Champions Tour (VCT) Stage 1 Masters tournament in Reykjavík, Iceland, as two of the Top 3 spots have been taken.

South Korea’s DRX saw their undefeated run screech to a halt with a 1-2 defeat by North America’s OpTic Gaming, while Brazilian superteam LOUD took down Europe’s G2 Esports in a 2-0 sweep.

In case you missed it, here’s a recap of all the action that went down during Day 8 of the VCT Masters Reykjavík.

Upper Bracket Semifinals

OpTic Gaming 2 – 1 DRX

Day 8 opened with a showdown between OpTic and DRX.

As the only North American team left standing in the playoffs, OpTic were under a lot of pressure.

Meanwhile, DRX’s undefeated run in the tournament continued to impress, with many pegging the South Koreans as favorites.

The series started on Ascent, with DRX securing the first two rounds. OpTic hit back, stopping their momentum in round three on the back of Pujan “FNS” Mehta’s three kills.

DRX retaliated quickly, taking the lead by winning the next three rounds. OpTic then took their second round win on the board via a spike plant defusal, which DRX rewarded by winning four more rounds to lead 9-3 by halftime.

The South Korean team entered the second half with guns blazing, taking the second pistol round and the following round all to themselves, thanks to Kim “Stax” Gu-taek.

Luckily for OpTic, the NA squad managed to find their footing by winning the next five rounds, closing the score gap by a significant margin.

By round 18, Jimmy “Marved” Nguyen won a 1v2 and take a clutch for his team. Unfortunately for the North American squad, DRX closed the map at 13-8 just a couple of rounds later.

For game two, the action took to Icebox, which was DRX’s map pick. Despite that, OpTic won the first two rounds before the opposing squads started trading blows, with neither one winning more than two rounds in a row.

Both teams refused to let up, with DRX post-plant utilities giving OpTic plenty of trouble. By halftime, the score was at 7-5 in favor of DRX.

Unfortunately for OpTic, they continued to lose the second half’s opening rounds, pushing the score to 9-5. Luckily, the team stopped a potential series loss in round 3. OpTic followed this by winning another round with a spike plant, bringing them up to 8-9.

They then gained the lead at 12-10 and finally closed the map at 13-10 after a quick timeout.

DRX and OpTic went to Split for the decider, where the former once again took the pistol round and led with a 4-1.

In retaliation, OpTic dealt a huge blow to the South Korean team’s economy, who then responded with flawless rounds. The first half ended with a tie at 6-6.

OpTic managed to take the pistol round in the second half, thanks to Jaccob “yay” Whiteaker‘s performance with his Chamber.

Austin “crashies” Roberts followed it up with an ace to let OpTic take the lead by 8-6. However, DRX’s Kim “Zest” Gi-seok responded with a 4k in the next round.

The following rounds saw another back and forth, with OpTic finally going up at 12-11. However, DRX kept the fight a bit longer and pushed the series into overtime.

The first overtime round saw a 10-man battle on A-site, leaving them at 13-13. Ultimately, OpTic took the last attack round for a 15-13 score, closing the series and keeping the North American dream alive.

Match MVP: Jaccob "yay" Whiteaker

LOUD 2 – 0 G2 Esports

For Day 8’s second upper bracket match, Brazil’s LOUD looked to to become the most successful Brazilian team in VALORANT’s international competitive scene by taking down European giants G2 Esports.

Both squads have certainly earned their spot in the playoffs, besting both of the teams that faced them during their tournament debut.

In Day 5, G2 Esports stopped Japan’s ZETA Division in their tracks with a 2-0 sweep while LOUD defeated European crowd favorites Team Liquid 2-1.

For the first map, the teams took to Ascent, where LOUD won the first round thanks to Erick “aspas” Santos.

LOUD kept up this aggression, building their lead with Gustavo “Sacy” Rossi. And just when G2 was on the brink of winning their first round, Felipe “Less” Basso showed up with a 2k to keep LOUD’s momentum.

G2 eventually got their first round with a flawless, albeit down by 6-1. However, LOUD kept up the lead to reach 9-3 by halftime, thanks to Sacy’s methodical picks and kills.

During the second half, LOUD once again won the pistol round, although a flawless from G2 set them for a potential comeback. Unfortunately for the Europeans, LOUD hit double digits not long after on the back of aspas.

Finally, a 2k from Less wrapped up the map 13-5 for LOUD shortly after hitting match point.

For the second game, the teams took to G2’s map pick of Breeze, where the German team took the first round and eventually, an early lead.

Luckily, a 4k from Matias “Saadhak” Delipetro secured a round for LOUD, shortly followed by a 3k from aspas that put the team back in the lead at 4-3.

With Saadhak and aspas at the helm, LOUD continued in the lead, catching G2 by surprise with random lurks and surprise attacks. As a result, the teams went into halftime at 8-4 in favor of LOUD.

The second half saw more aggression from LOUD, who quickly won the first two rounds to hit the double digits. And despite trade map wins against G2, the Brazilian squad kept up the pace, going up to 11 round wins.

However, G2 weren't content with getting rattled, as the team started a potential comeback with Žygimantas “nukkye” Chmieliauskas’ Jett. G2 used this momentum to win round after round and reach 11-9.

Tensions rose after LOUD won a thrifty from Sacy, reaching match point. But just as the team was about to defuse a plant, G2 managed a clutch to put themselves in the double digits at 12-10. G2 pulled another clutch right after with a 1v2 from Aaro “hoody” Peltokangas.

But just as G2 were about to push the game into overtime, LOUD closed the map at 13-11 for a 2-0 win.

Match MVP: Erick "aspas" Santos

With today’s results, LOUD and OpTic Gaming have each secured a spot in the Top 3 and will be facing each other in the upper bracket finals on 23 April.

Meanwhile, G2 Esports and DRX drop to the lower bracket where they will fight for their tournament lives against Paper Rex and ZETA DIVISION, respectively, on 19 April.

VCT Masters Reykjavík is now in its playoff stage. Four qualified teams from the group stage joined the four high-seeded teams in a double-elimination bracket, with all teams starting in the upper bracket.

All matches in the playoffs will be a best-of-3, except for the lower bracket finals and the grand finals, which will be best-of-5 series.

The champions of VCT Masters Reykjavík will claim the lion's share of US$200,000 out of the US$675,000 prize pool as well as 750 circuit points.

Feb has been trying to speedrun Super Mario 64 ever since he started playing video games at 11 years old. He has never succeeded, but has completed other video games in the time since. When not playing, he's usually playing music or building Gunpla.

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