Meta Athena hits 20 game win streak, KongDoo Panthera pushes LW Blue to lower bracket
Aggressive triple snipers, creative Mei walls, and hooks that shouldn't have worked: The start of OGN Overwatch APEX season two's second group B included some of the best Overwatch played to date.
Potential royal roaders Meta Athena showed up to their match against Afreeca Freecs Blue ready to innovate. Though Afreeca Freecs Blue took the first map, Ilios, from Meta Athena, the underdogs struck back hard.
Placing DPS hero Kim "Libero" Hye Sung, Meta Athena whipped out a creative flanking route to full wipe Afreeca Freecs Blue on Eichenwalde. Funneling up to the castle wall's high ground near Eichenwalde's capture point, Meta Athena aligns themselves into a neat row. Mei's ice wall emerges from the floor, boosting the entire team up and over Eichenwalde's crumbling walls. This puts the entire team behind the castle wall, allowing them to stream through a low ground tunnel and catch Afreeca Freecs by surprise.
Such a creative strategy is something we've yet to see before in competitive Overwatch—so it's no surprise they'd do something unconventional again after taking both Eichenwalde and Temple of Anubis. Though triple sniper isn't something entirely new, Meta Athena used Ana, Hanzo, and Widowmaker to secure quick picks, knocking down Afreeca Freecs Blue players one by one to push the Dorado payload a few meters and secure their 20th consecutive win.
On the other side of the bracket, both KongDoo Panthera and LW Blue showed up at their best. Likely some of the best Overwatch played competitively to date, the matches were anyone's game. And for a while, it looked like LW Blue would be the team moving to the upper bracket.
On both Lijiang Tower and Numbani, LW Blue stayed aggressive, amassing ultimates quicker than most would imagine. That pushed them over the edge against KongDoo Panthera, who couldn't keep up, though just slightly. Those two map losses for KongDoo Panthera were their first drops in the entire OGN Overwatch APEX season two tournament, and it couldn't have felt good.
It was enough, however, to ignite KongDoo Panthera's players—especially Roadhog master Koo "EVERMORE" Kyo Min. Somehow, Roadhog became the counter for everything LW Blue threw down, whether it be Mercy, Pharah, or Soldier: 76.
LW Blue mounted an impressive hold on Eichenwalde, keeping KongDoo Panthera's payload from sliding into its golden parking space. In doing so, KongDoo Panthera would be advancing to the upper bracket. And, of course, they did. But for a while there, it looked like LW Blue might hold. It came down to Heo "Gambler" Jin-woo on Mercy. With a resurrect available, Gambler could keep his team alive, stalling the payload ever longer, giving them at least a fighting chance of stalling its tires.
Instead, EVERMORE lurked around the corners, landing a clutch hook on Gambler, removing Mercy—and her resurrect—from play.
With Mercy down, LW Blue does actually hold the payload until Gambler gets back, and he does get off that lifesaving resurrect. It's not enough, still, to keep KongDoo Panthera off the payload. Minutes later, KongDoo Panthera secures the reverse sweep and moves on to the OGN Overwatch APEX upper bracket.
Games continue March 17 with Meta Athena versus KongDoo Panthera and Afreeca Freecs Blue versus LW Blue. The winner of the upper bracket will move on to the playoffs, with the loser moving down to the lower bracket for a second chance. With how KongDoo Panthera played today, it's going to be hard for Meta Athena to get by. But it's not impossible.
The loser of the lower bracket will be out of the tournament, with the winner playing the loser of the upper bracket. The final team moving on to the OGN Overwatch APEX playoffs will be determined on March 21, which is when Overwatch's new character will be released to the live servers.
OGN Overwatch APEX is still playing on patch 1.7, however, so the tournament will continue being unaffected by ongoing patches.