Week 5, Day 4 of the League of Legends Champions Korea opened up with an action packed 2-1 victory by Longzhu Gaming over the Afreeca Freecs on Saturday in Seoul, South Korea.
Both Longzhu Gaming (7-3, 17-9 match record) and Afreeca Freecs (5-5, 15-13 match record) drafted teamfighting/pick hybrid compositions, laying the groundwork for an blood-soaked Game 1. Afreeca came out quite flat, however, gifting three kills to Longzhu top laner Kim "Khan" Dong-ha's Rumble on a failed tower dive. Afreeca rebounded with better rotations and skill shot aim throughout the first 20 minutes to stay relevant, and eventually take the gold lead and first Baron of the game after winning a 3-for-1 teamfight at the 20-minute mark. Longzhu held out for as long as it could, but it was unable to sustain after Afreeca slayed Baron at the 39-minute mark and won a 3-for-0 teamfight en route to going up 1-0 in the series.
Longzhu and Afreeca drafted similar team compositions to Game 1, and Longzhu found another early game lead to kick off Game 2. This time Longzhu played the early game smarter, taking safer angles and respecting the potential to get picked out. This led to a 7,000-gold lead for Longzhu, topped off with two Infernal Drakes, which paved the way for a free Baron at the 21-minute mark. Afreeca continued to lose every teamfight and offered little resistance to the Longzhu push. After killing its second Baron at the 33-minute mark, Longzhu quickly earned an ace and a Nexus kill to even up the series.
Teamfighting/hybrid compositions came back yet again for Game 3, and so did the early game fights, but this time it was nearly dead even until the 15-minute mark. A 3-for-0 skirmish for Longzhu gave it a 2,000-gold lead and map control. Longzhu once again layed it safe and didn't force fights to find kills, instead focusing on objectives and reacting to Afreeca's mistakes to secure easy kills. Afreeca attempted to bring the game back in its favor, but once it gave up the first Baron of the game at the 33-minute mark without trading anything in return, there was simply no coming back. Longzhu methodically pushed in waves across all three lanes, and at the 37-minute mark it collapsed and took the 2-1 series victory.
Longzhu Gaming will look to continue its creep on third place on Tuesday, July 11 in its next game against MVP at 4 a.m ET, while Afreeca Freecs will return to the Rift on Wednesday, July 12 to play ROX Tigers at 4 a.m ET.