Spacestation Gaming have long been lauded for their consistency in the Apex Legends Global Series, but on Friday night, they proved they had plenty of pop-off potential as well. The team won two games and finished second in two more, utterly dominating a lobby that included Split One champions TSM and heavyweights like G2 and Sentinels. It was an impressive performance that emphasized just how many teams in North America could end up representing the region in the Split Two playoffs and just how many could win them.
Beginning on World’s Edge, game one brought the lobby to Thermal Station, and in North America, Thermal Station is synonymous with one team: G2. The aim-assisted squad didn’t disappoint, defending their drop spot despite strange ring pulls.
Taking advantage of their early ring knowledge, G2 set up shop on top of the center tower in Thermal Station, a nearly-unassailable position. But when the ring shifted sharply to the north, the team adjusted right along with it, winning the fights they needed to win. Game one was also a hot start for Spacestation, who picked up second place with 11 kills, despite their landing spot far to the north of Thermal.
Game two featured another southern zone, this time pulling to the lava fields between Launch Site and The Dome. It was nearly the same ending zone where TSM won the Split One playoffs. And while they didn’t win this game, that didn’t stop them from putting on a show.
Despite going out in sixth place, TSM recorded an astounding 16 kills, using the game to launch the team into fourth place overall. They were led by IGL ImperialHal, who recorded more than 3,300 damage in just the one match. Sentinels also recorded a big game, running through the lobby with 10 kills of their own and a third-place finish to put themselves in fifth place overall. In the end, however, it was an unlikely winner in E8, who won the fight with Sentinels, cleaned up the last remaining solo player, and put themselves one point behind leaders G2 with the victory in game two.
The final game on World’s Edge finished in the open field between Countdown, Landslide, and Lava Fissure. With so much open space, games that end in that area tend to be a toss-up. Spacestation, however, never looked to be in any trouble, taking the game and jumping into first place overall.
It was a game that typified Spacestation’s preferred style of play. The team found a safe spot in the ending zone as early as possible, picking up kills on squads trying to rotate into the zone and finishing the game clinically. At the halfway mark, the usual suspects all crowded the top of the leaderboard, with two notable exceptions: E8, the winners of game two, and Bad Boys, who collected second-place finishes in games two and three to put themselves in contention for the lobby victory after three games.
Sentinels notched their first victory of the day in game four when the lobby switched maps to Storm Point, taking a powerful position in the final circle and receiving some good fortune in the form of Spacestation being forced to drop from the high platform of Launch Pad early.
With little loot and the zone at their backs, Spacestation took the initiative, dropping down to kill a solo player from Complexity and then taking a three-vs-three fight against TSM. The best play for SSG, however, was also the best play for Sentinels, who suddenly didn’t have any teams to worry about on one side. This, and the fact that Spacestation lost out on Angello “xenial” Cardenas in the TSM fight, allowed Sentinels to easily take the victory. The win brought the squad back up into the top five of the day’s leaderboard. It also allowed Spacestation to open up an ever bigger lead at the top, however. Their second-place finish, coupled with nine more kills, meant the gap between them and G2 in second place widened to 18 points with two games remaining.
Spacestation would put the lobby out of reach in game five, again finding a safe place to play from in the final circle, fighting off teams that tried to push their position, and playing the endgame to perfection.
This time, with the final zone ending more than halfway across the map from Spacestation’s landing spot in Launch Pad, the team still showed an almost preternatural ability to identify where the game would end early on. Their win, with another nine kills, put them 39 points above G2 in second place. The lobby wasn’t over, sure. But all other teams were fighting for second place with one game remaining.
Just because they couldn’t win, however, didn’t mean that G2 wouldn’t put their stamp on things, winning the final game of the day to secure second place on the day.
The team found plenty of kills and the victory in a difficult zone that pulled to the far north of Storm Point, just outside of High Point. The result ensured the gap between G2 in second and Sentinels in third was a wide one at 20 points, even as Spacestation led G2 by 15 points in the final standings. The final game was also a big one for Torrent, who grabbed a second-place finish that allowed the team to jump up seven spots in the final standings, all the way to sixth place.
The victory solidified Spacestation’s place in NA’s top 10. They entered the matchday in a tie for 10th place, having played one less game than half the teams in the region. The 25 points for first place in match day eight bumped the team up to seventh and gave them a 15-point cushion over 11th place in Pro League. G2 and TSM also stayed secure on the top 10 leaderboard, while Sentinels slipped into eight place in Pro League.
Only two match days remain for the 40 teams in NA Pro League, and only 10 spots in the Split Two playoffs in Stockholm are available. It’s do or die for the teams at the bottom of the Pro League leaderboard, and the competition for that number 10 spot will be more intense than ever.