The New York Subliners began their series against the Dallas Empire much the same way they had done throughout the Call of Duty League’s Super Week. A blown opportunity in game three, however, allowed the Empire to climb back in the series and achieve a critical reverse sweep.
The loss is not only a hit to the Subliners' momentum, but it puts their place in Group A in jeopardy. Had they won, New York would have locked up second place, but now, they could fall out of the top three and potentially begin the first CDL Major in the losers bracket.
Two decisive victories on Checkmate Hardpoint and Search and Destroy put the Subliners in a great position to sweep their third opponent of the week. And with a 2-1 lead on Raid Control, a map NYSL won against the Minnesota RØKKR, the Subliners seemed to have swept the reigning champions.
With less than a minute to go in their defensive round, the Subliners had wiped out three Empire players on what seemed to be one of the final pushes Dallas could make. A kill by iLLeY opened up the B-side of the map, though, forcing New York to rotate to defend the point.
Huke and C6 secured several crucial kills on the rotating Subliners and, with the help of iLLeY, quickly captured the point. After the Subliners respawned, they attempted to challenge the Empire on B, but Dallas tied the map up despite having half of the available lives New York did.
Dallas closed out the map in round five and followed it up with a strong showing on Garrison Hardpoint, a map in which the duo of Shotzzy and C6 combined for 69 kills. The Empire similarly showed strength on Miami Search and Destroy, completing a reverse sweep that keeps their hopes of winning Group A alive.
With a 3-1 record, the Empire can finish first in the group if they defeat the undefeated Los Angeles Thieves in the final match of Super Week on Feb. 28. A victory over the Thieves would give Dallas the head-to-head tiebreaker and by extension, a round bye in the first Major of the season.
To start in the winners bracket, New York will have to defeat the fifth-place Seattle Surge on Feb. 28.