Delta Fox Qualify for the Challenger Spring Split

By Stephen Thompson
December 16, 2016
Echo Fox's sister team, Delta Fox, qualified to compete in the North American Challenger Series after a decisive 3-0 win over University of Toronto eSports on Wednesday night. Delta Fox will compete in the NACS starting in the 2017 spring split.

TEAM ROSTER
Top: Allorim
Jungle: Grigne
Mid: Damonte
ADC: Shynon
Support: 1onz

HOW IT HAPPENED
Delta Fox qualified for the NACS by going through the League of Legends Battleground NACS Open Qualifier. Delta Fox never lost a game in the tournament, defeating Team Yikes, Team Exile Surge, State of Mind Gaming and University of Toronto eSports in straight games each match.

FINALS VS. UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO ESPORTS RECAP

Game One

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Delta Fox champion selection: Poppy, Lee Sin, Ryze, Ashe and Karma
Uni. of Toronto eSports champion selection: Nautilus, Rengar, Orianna, Caitlyn and Zyra.

Not a whole lot of action to be had in the game's first 10 minutes, but Delta Fox built an early gold lead solely on the abilities of its laners to farm better. Delta Fox decided to contest UoT's red buff and Grigne outsmited the opponent, which led to Damonte collapsing on the Rengar. Damonte and Grigne were able to secure first blood and burned Rengar's flash for just a ghost summoner spell.

An extended fight inside UoT's blue-side jungle 15 minutes into the game was the next major point of action. Grigne and Damonte were looking to catch an unsuspecting Rengar again in his own jungle, but the extended team fight wore down to several skirmishes scattered in and around the jungle. The eventual result was a 2-for-2 with Grigne and 1onz trading their lives for UoT's Rengar and Nautilus. Shortly after Damonte soloed the Orianna with near perfect combo precision on the Ryze to boost Delta Fox's gold lead to 2,000.

The Orianna got her revenge on Damonte just a couple minutes later, but not before Damonte took down the mid turret, opening the map for Delta Fox to lay more vision. 30 seconds later Grigne avenged Damonte by landing a Sonic Wave through a cluster of minions and soloing the Orianna.

The vision Delta Fox was able to gain with the mid turret down proved valuable. Delta Fox was able to detect and eliminate two UoT's players who overextended and were punished accordingly for their missteps. This brought the gold lead to a comfortable 4,000 for Delta Fox. Though it may have been a little too comfortable as Delta Fox's bottom lane was caught clearing wards and an ill-advised teleport cost Allorim his first death. UoT tried to secure the infernal drake following the 2-0 fight they had just won, but a quick steal from Grigne's Lee Sin foiled their efforts to gain any advantage off the fight beyond narrowing the gold lead.

23 minutes into the game Grigne, Shynon and 1onz go for another aggressive red buff steal. While Grigne stole the buff, it was quickly returned to UoT after a five-man collapse got all three members killed and gave UoT a 9-8 edge in kills.

Fast forward five minutes and the game picks up in UoT's red-side jungle where, once again, Grigne is looking to make a play on the enemy jungler after Damonte had picked off the Zyra near the baron pit. This time, UoT got the upper hand with Orianna hitting a three-man Shockwave and pushing Delta Fox out of the jungle, killing Grigne and Damonte for only Rengar's life. Allorim found himself a little over extended and paid the price, giving UoT a 12-10 kill advantage.

Another skirmish erupted at the 30 minute mark in which Grigne fell early and it looked like another team fight victory for UoT, but with an Allorim teleport flank, and some great support play from 1onz, Delta Fox came out on top trading 2-for-1 and getting the team back in the saddle for the time being. Delta Fox secured baron two minutes later, but surrendered Grigne and 1onz in an extended skirmish just a minute after securing baron.

Though the team lost several fights, Delta Fox still controlled the neutral objectives and even pushed UoT off an elder dragon to secure it for the team. Delta Fox continued to press objectives, and eventually settled in to slowly closing the game out meticulously by snowballing the advantages the team had gained. Delta Fox pushed through the mid lane and destroyed the nexus at 42 minutes.

Game Two

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Delta Fox champion selection: Poppy, Lee Sin, Leblanc, Ashe and Zyra
Uni. of Toronto eSports champion selection: Nautilus, Hecarim, Syndra, Caitlyn and Karma.

Grigne and Damonte combined again for first blood, but in this game it was in the mid lane only 4 minutes and 30 seconds into the game. Damonte was able to lock down the Syndra with a chain which allowed Grigne to hit the easy Sonic Wave while Damonte finished him off. Syndra blew her flash a millisecond too late, which proved costly as Grigne came back two minutes later for a repeat gank with the same result.

UoT would get a kill back onto Allorim after her teleported in to help Damonte who was being ganked, but Allorim paid the price. Delta Fox would pick up a kill onto Hecarim in a bot-lane skirmish, but the real reward was Shynon picking up a double kill following the skirmish by using the brush to arrow the opposing Caitlyn and finish off the Karma.

Delta Fox had picked up a large enough lead that Damonte was able to solo the Hecarim inside his own jungle at the 13-minute mark. Delta Fox continued to pour on the pressure and seized objectives whenever possible, looking more and more like a team prepared to take on the NACS.

The ultimate turning moment in the game came 21 minutes into the game when Delta Fox attempted to dive Nautilus in the top lane. The dive didn't work and Allorim lost his life, but UoT was greedy and fell right into the hands of Damonte who picked up a triple kill and gave Delta Fox a definitive 13-6 kill advantage over UoT.

Things slowed down again and Delta Fox began to go through the slow process of winning a competitive League of Legends game: pressure lanes, secure deep vision, pick off over extending opponents, and secure objectives. This repetitive process allowed Delta Fox to slowly but surely take down UoT. The game was finally concluded after 49 minutes.

Game Three

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Delta Fox champion selection: Poppy, Elise, Ryze, Ashe, Karma.
Uni. of Toronto eSports champion selection: Nautilus, Lee Sin, Orianna, Caitlyn, Zyra

The first nine minutes of the final game of the series were quiet, as neither team wanted to take a chance so early in the game. Instead, the teams spent the time farming in lane, but neither gained gold advantage.

At the nine-minute mark, UoT jungler Bananas made his way to Delta Fox's top side tri-brush, walking into lane behind Allorim, and forming a pincer with GAIY's Nautilus. UoT easily took the kill and the tower, but a roam from Damonte's Ryze took down Nautilus before he fell to Lee Sin, making it an overall 1-for-2 kill trade.

UoT scored another kill off of the level six power spike from Zyra around the 11-minute mark, increasing its lead to two thousand gold. That lead had been cut to nearly zero less than two minutes later as Allorim teleported bot and helped the Foxes score two kills.

At this point the aggression in the game increased greatly as the teams traded kills back and forth. By the time that an infernal drake spawned at the 17-minute mark, Delta Fox led in kills 6-5. UoT took the drake cleanly despite pressure from the Foxes and escaped unscathed.

The first truly decisive fight of the game occurred just before the 22-minute mark. Grigne caught out JayJ's Zyra in the Delta Fox jungle, nearly killing him in one Elise combo. Both teams collapsed on the engagement and Delta Fox quickly killed Bananas and followed up by chasing down another kill on GAIY.

With the enemy's jungler and tank dead, the Foxes rushed to Baron and burned it down, earning a 2,000 gold lead.

The Baron buff led to a free mountain drake for the Foxes, as well as turrets in the middle and bottom lanes.

An overstep in the top lane gave UoT a chance to reduce the deficit, as the team successfully defended their second tier turret and killed four members of Delta Fox at the cost of only one death of their own.

An extended skirmish started at the 29-minute mark as the Foxes earned a 2-for-1 trade and picked up another mountain drake. The mountain drake stacking proved useful as the Foxes once more rushed Baron, earning another power play for the team.

That play proved to be the beginning of the end as UoT was constricted inside its base. Delta Fox took a 3-for-2 trade to destroy the top and middle inhibitor turrets, and the top lane inhibitor.

UoT made a last ditch effort to secure the elder dragon as super minions battered on its Nexus turrets, but Delta Fox responded quickly, forcing them off the objective, scoring a two for one trade and claiming the buff for themselves. From there, it was a simple matter of chasing down the final kills and destroying the Nexus.

At the 37-minute mark, the Nexus exploded and Delta Fox officially joined the North American Challenger Series.