Enemy eSports won a long and messy fight against Team Dragon Knights on Sunday in a violent and seesawing 47-minute game.
Though NME had absolute control by the mid game, their missteps allowed TDK to grab a lead even as their base was breaking. NME's third Baron ended up being the final needed objective for the group to finish the match, improving themselves to a 2-2 record in the NA LCS Summer Split.
For TDK, the game was Smoothie's introduction to the LCS as the team's starting support. Along with two other players, he was unable to join the team at the beginning of the Summer Split due to Visa issues — the others, Ninja and Emperor, are still being replaced by subs.
NME chose individually strong champions — though missing out on wave clear — while TDK's lineup was holistically tanky and team-fight focused. On the Rift, the groups started with similar CS scores but TDK grabbed an early advantage by shedding First Blood after a beautiful gank from Kez in the 8 minute, which gifted them the first dragon as well.
TDK was also ahead in vision control, with some early deep wards placed in the enemy jungles. But they lost their kill advantage after several ganks made the score 3-3. Though their enemies were shuffling around in the river, TDK got their second dragon to slightly tilt an otherwise tied game.
By the 20-minute mark, NME had taken control of the game with the kill score at 5-4 and the turret count at 3-2. After getting their first dragon, NME got two free kills then the mid Tier 2 turret to definitely pull themselves ahead in the mid game. At the 26-minute mark, they even secured an early Baron without any contest.
At this time, NME broke the enemy base by taking the bottom inhibitor with their purple minions. A few minutes later, the group shattered the only remaining outer turret in exchange for the death of their top laner. But they couldn't close out the game, kept at bay by TDK, who got another kill but overextended to give up two.
NME destroyed the mid inhibitor but backed off again, this time to get a second Baron after getting their tenth kill. They invaded the enemy base again and took a nexus turret but were chased away, yet again, after giving up one-for-three.
TDK's base crumbling, the group defended their last inhibitor, trading an ace-for-one and extending the game. The kill score on their side at 14-12 and 40 minutes on the clock, TDK looked to make a miraculous comeback.
NME killed their third dragon, equal in gold with their opponents, then started and secured their third Baron after distracting their enemies beautifully with a split push. The late game ticking away, TDK were pushed back to their base again, where NME destroyed the bottom and mid inhibitors. After a glorious four-for-one fight to leave the score at 16-15, NME finished the game after more than 47 minutes.
Farnia Fekri is a staff writer for theScore eSports. She is irrevocably in love with Tom Hanks. You can follow her on Twitter.