The Houston Outlaws have stumbled out of the gates in Stage Three but have not gone down without a fight. The New York Excelsior have been on top of the standings all season, but recently dropped a match to the Boston Uprising. Will Houston be able to capitalize on any weaknesses Boston exposed in New York’s armor?
Outlaws – Jake, Rawkus, Coolmatt, FCTFCTN, Linkzr, Bani
NYXL – JJonak, Ark, Libero, Meko, Janus, Saebyeolbe
Map One – Volskaya Industries
FCTFCTN gets the start as the Outlaws come out defending the New York attack with a Dive composition with a Widowmaker. They hold strong agains the first push from the offense, doing an excellent job staggering New York. Houston continues a strong defensive hold, with New York finally completing Point A with under a minute left on the clock. New York pushes into Point B ahead on ultimate charge, but without many ready to be used. Meko dominates the next engagement, picking up three kills, but FCTFCTN dives into the support line of New York and forces the tanks back while the rest of the Houston team respawns. A heads up play by FCTFCTN with the backline dive, saving Houston thePoint and they stabilize without New York taking any control percentage. New York takes early advantage again in the next push, but this time they don’t leave the same opening for Houston to exploit and they’re able to win an extended fight, finishing the map with about 1:15 remaining.
Houston comes out with the same composition on offense they had on defense and are matched by New York. New York allows Houston to push to the point, defending at the large healthpack. Houston get the first kill, but New York quickly returns the favor and more, forcing Houston to reset. The next fight is a long one, with both teams getting kills, resurrecting players, and returning for more bloodshed. Houston eventually wins the fight, with Coolmatt finishing off two of the New York players to slam the door on their defense. Houston decides to try and snowball into Point B with their ultimates and are able to take down four members of New York very quickly. New York tries to stagger themselves on the Point, with support ultimates and a Mei switch, but Houston are able to force them off the Point and finish their attack with over four minutes in their time bank.
New York comes out on attack for their second run and are under a minute before they reach the Point and engage. Houston holds strong against the first push, and are able to clean up the second as well once both teams transcendence’s wear off. Houston comes out on attack and Linkzr gets the first kill as Widowmaker, while it gets countered by a resurrection he gets two more afterward and Houston take the Point and the map shortly after.
Houston Outlaws Win 3-2
Map Two – Blizzard World
Substitutions: Houston brings in Muma for FCTFCTN, New York brings Pine in for Libero.
New York comes out on attack with the same dive composition with Widowmaker that was run on Volskaya. Houston defends with an Orisa/Junkrat based composition. Pine has trouble finding sightlines through the Houston shields and Rawkus is able to take him down. The rest of the New York squad pressures Houston, gets some kills and get about 75% of the point captured before respawns come in and stabilize things for Houston. Both teams push right back to the point and Meko takes out Bani with a Self Destruct and New York continues to pressure the point and moves on to the escort portion of the map. Houston stands tall on defense again around the Pylon building, but New York steps up as time expires and makes an overtime push to the Point and move onto the final stretch. Houston’s early Point C defense is rolled over, but they hold strong before New York is able to finish, giving themselves an opportunity on attack to complete the map and win a second map.
Houston come out on attack with a McCree instead of a Widowmaker. Linkzr gets the best of Pine and the Houston players jump onto the point. New York manages to hold strong on the back of strong cleanup from Saebyolbe and good positioning from Pine as he respawned. Houston gets the first kill of the next fight with Rawkus taking out Saebyeolbe and while both teams trade kills afteward the team from Texas is able to take control and capture Point A. New York stands strong on Point B, pushing back attack after attack from the Outlaws. Houston is struggling to get the Payload near the Pylon Terrace. Houston manages to get their final push around the terrace but New York holds strong with Meko clearing most of the team, clinching the win for New York.
New York Excelsior Win 2-1
Map Three – Nepal
Substitutions: New York brings Mano in for Janus, Anamo in for Ark, and Libero in for Pine. Houston makes no changes.
New York comes out with Libero on Bastion. The Outlaws come out with a Junkrat and a McCree. New York gets early control and begin to protect their Bastion. Houston build up their Ultimates and Jake and Linkzr get five rapid kills as they spend their Deadeye and RIP tire, taking the Point with New York at 28%. Libero switches to Genji and Jake switches to Tracer. New York wins the next fight, with Houston having 47% control and take their own control past 60% before Houston returns to contest. Houston gets bottled up and a timely Dragonblade from Libero gets them a big teamfight win early. New York locks out the Houston players from here and take the first Point.
Both teams come out with Orisa, Widowmaker, Junkrat compositions that have become staples on this Point. The only difference in composition being New York taking a Roadhog to Houston’s DVA. New York take the Point early and do a good job slowing the next push, but Houston take control with New York at 40%. Houston holds strong to 80% before New York is able to wrestle back control. New York gets themselves to 77% but are unable to stop Houston from regaining control, they’re able to touch the Point to force overtime, but Houston decisively wins the ensuing fight and we head to a third Point to determine the winner of map three.
Both teams come out with identical dive compositions with Junkrat at the flex dps position. Houston take the Point first for a change and both teams trade a lot of kills. Neither side really ‘wins’ but New York isn’t able to get enough of an advantage to take the Point and eventually back up to regroup. Houston make it to 99% control before New York is able to get control for the first time. New York has an ultimate advantage, so Houston looks to build up their ultimates for a decisive push to win the round and the map. Full ultimates wouldn’t be needed however, with Houston getting some early kills and using that to take control of the Point. While New York is able to return some kills to the other side, they’re not able to contest for long and Houston win.
Houston Outlaws Win 2-1
Map Four – Route 66
Substitutions: New York brings in Pine for Libero and Ark for Anamo. Houston brings in FCTFCTN for Muma.
Both teams come out with identical compositions built around Widowmakers.
Boston Uprising 3-2
Boston looked like a new team. Even though they were in a pretty good place before losing DreamKazper, the lack of their prolific DPS player didn’t slow them down in the slightest. NYXL looked like they had few answers for the aggressive Uprising play on Junkertown. Houston does a great job slowing the push through Point A but doesn’t ever look to put up a strong hold. Point B goes much like it typically does, with the offense methodically pushing their way through after they manage to wrestle control of the high ground. Point C goes similarly to the norm as Point B did, with New York slowly pushing their way through wave after wave, and managing to finish the map in overtime.
Houston comes out with Linkzr on Hanzo, but not just to check the train cars with a sonic arrow. They push all the way to the gas station on the back of Tracer and Hanzo, continually using sonic arrows to reveal the position of the New York defense. FCTFCTN capitalizes and takes down the New York core, and Houston finishes Point A. New York manages to put together a strong defense on Point B. Houston looks like they’re about to take control and push through to take the Point, but Pine isn’t having it, getting three consecutive kills to end Houston’s push. The attacker’s regroup for a final push as time is about to expire, but lose Coolmatt and Bani on the way in. New York is up to the task however, and clears out the remaining attackers forcing a map five.
New York Excelsior Win 2-1
Map Five – Oasis
Substitutions: New York makes no changes, Houston bring in Muma and Boink for FCTFCTN and Bani.
Both teams come out with Junkrat compositions with Jake and Pine manning the Trash Rat. Pine takes down Jake as the first kill of the map, earning shouts from the crowd. Houston gets control of the Point however, with Linkzr doing great work on Tracer. New York look like they’re about to take control before Jake comes roaring back with a three kill RIP Tire. Jake’s dominance continues through the next attack, nearly earning Jake another RIP tire. Pine swaps to Pharah to try and counter Jake’s dominance. New York wins the next fight decisively, but Houston is at 96% control when New York flips the Point. Both teams lose their Mercy, as the fight progresses Coolmatt does great work getting a few kills, Houston takes control but New York has made it to 90% themselves. Jake’s latest RIP tire keeps New York off the point and they march half way to victory.
Houston comes out with an interesting composition featuring Sombra, Moira, and Lucio. New York comes out with a very standard composition with Tracer and McCree at DPS. Houston grabs control of the Point early and a Coalescence from Rawkus helps them push New York back. Both Winston’s fall as the New York reinforcements arrive. Houston stalls the fight out until they hit 99% control before New York is able to take control. New York holds until 82% before Houston flips it back to their control. The fight flips back-and-forth with Houston on the verge of winning the map at any second. New York eventually wrestles the fight in their favor and get control of the Point. Houston manages to get back to the Point as the map ticks into overtime. Muma falls early, but Mano falls shortly after. Kills fly fast and furious between the teams but New York squeaks through and forces a third round of this fifth map.
Houston comes out with a standard dive composition with a Mercy. New York matches them with a McCree instead of a Genji. New York gets early control of the point and holds off Houston’s next few pushes. Houston flips the Point with New York at 99% but they don’t win a decisive fight. New York regroups and takes down the Houston players and regain control. Boink manages to get on the Point to force overtime, but none of the other Houston players are able to get there in time and New York emerges victorious.
New York Excelsior Win 2-1
Match Score: New York Excelsior Win 3-2
Consistent, performant, doesn’t get subbed out. Saebyeolbe consistently had a huge impact on the match and continues to show why he’s considered the best Tracer in Overwatch.
Match Score: 9/10
This match couldn’t have been closer. Looking at a 3-2 score line doesn’t do it justice. If you missed this match, go watch the VODs, this one is worth it.