HCS Pro League Online Invitational Recap

With the Invitational Online Qualifier we had 16 teams from previous HCS performances take each other on to proceed to the LAN Qualifier in Burbank, CA. These are the eight teams you'll see at the live event.

The HCS Pro League NA Online qualifiers have come to an end, which means we now know the eight teams that will face off in Burbank, Calif. for their seeding in the Season Finals. The day began with 16 teams in four groups battling it out in double elimination brackets to narrow down the final eight. The groupings were set as follows:

Group A


STR8 Rippin

Team eLevate

Soul Red

Group B

Team Allegiance


God Tier

Denial eSports

Group C





Group D


Crowd Control

Team Liquid


This would be the first time that we got to see many of the newly reformed teams since the Halo World Championship Finals. Since the PAX East Invitational, however, we got to see OpTic, EnVyUs, and Enigma6 take another shot at proceeding toward the HCS Pro League Season Finals.

In Group A we got to see Cuyler “Huke” Garlad and Jesse “Bubu Dubu” Moeller formerly of Denial eSports, alongside Carlos “Cratos” Ayala, formerly of Team Allegiance, and Ryan ”Shooter” Sondhi clean house in their group. Huke and Bubu are undoubtedly some of the strongest players in their former team and continue to show consistency in their performance. Playing with the veterans Cratos and Shooter should compliment their play ability and we can definitely look forward to this team performing extremely well throughout the season.

On the loser side of the same group Soul Red beat out both STR8 Rippin, and took down eLevate on the rematch in losers side. Gabriel “Gabriel” Funes-Soto and Nicolas “Who is KingNick” Panzella both have experience with each other on their former team of Astral Authority. While Cody “JuicyFruit” Brock being the young talent on the team, and Gilbert “Munoz” Munoz the veteran overall. Despite eLevate having more experience overall, and plenty of great talent, Soul Red proved their worth taking it to eLevate the second time around. However, they still have plenty of work left to do at Burbank if they want to guarantee their spot at the Season Finals.

In Group B, the newly reformed Team Allegiance had practically no problem clearing out their group. God Tier gave Denial a tough time in the beginning, and even Allegiance lost a couple matches to God Tier before clinching the win. However, Denial did come back in losers side to take down God Tier. Allegiance has a strong team set in place this season. While Denial lost some of their best players on the roster, that did not stop them from showing that they have what it takes to continue playing with the best.

Group C was an opportunity for OpTic to redeem themselves from their Halo World Championship performance. With Brett “Naded” Leonard on their side, they definitely have the potential even more so now to go far in the Pro League. Clutching out their win over Renegades was their crowning achievement during the qualifier, but we can guarantee that Renegades, ever the wild card, will be seeking revenge over this loss at Burbank.

In Group D, Team Liquid came out through the winners side along with EnVyUs. When the two met, it was a close series, but Liquid came out on top. EnVyUs would go on to beat Crowd Control to claim their spot at the Burbank invitational.


In one week, these eight teams will be battling it out for the four spots available for the Season Finals. The teams we are seeing thus far are pretty consistent with the teams we saw at the HaloWC, albeit with newly formed rosters, we are getting to see new rivalries form. Be sure to follow @HCS on Twitter to keep up to date on the stream times for the Burbank, Calif. LAN Invitational May 8.


Who do you think will be the four teams to get seeded for the HCS Pro League Season Finals? Let us know in the comments below, or on our Twitter @eSportsNation.