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Team Liquid took its first step toward earning a spot in the League of Legends Championship Series Summer Split by defeating eUnited 3-1 on Friday during the North American Spring Promotion Tournament in Los Angeles.
eUnited earned a small lead in kills to start Game 1 as jungler Berk "Gilius" Demir's Lee Sin successfully ganked on a handful of occasions. Team Liquid struggled to return kills as its gold lead disappeared in the midgame. eUnited's excellent work in teamfights helped secure multiple Baron buffs that padded its gold lead and led to the destruction of most of Team Liquid's base. Still hanging in the contest, Team Liquid eventually won a teamfight late and immediately went on the offensive to knock down an inhibitor, but that was all it could muster. eUnited's top laner Eric "Licorice" Ritchie made a teleport flank that kickstarted an ace, quickly leading to a Game 1 victory.
In Game 2, eUnited's bottom lane duo punished Team Liquid's mistakes early to score multiple kills, including first blood. That didn't stop Team Liquid's jungler Kim "Reignover" Yeu-Jin from taking over the rest of the Rift on Kha'Zix as he participated in the first 11 of Team Liquid's kills. Winning teamfights kept momentum building for Team Liquid as it took a lead in turrets, kills and gold. An ace near the 24-minute mark all but clinched the Game 2 win, as Team Liquid would quickly kill the Baron and knock down a handful of inhibitors. A second ace shortly thereafter sealed the deal for Team Liquid to even up the series.
Reignover continued to make smart jungle paths in Game 3 as his Graves helped Team Liquid jump out to a 4-0 lead in kills. Team Liquid dictated the pace of Game 3 throughout the mid game as it rotated through the Rift taking objectives. After picking off eUnited's AD carry around the 23-minute mark, Team Liquid took an easy Baron buff and then bulldozed its way down mid lane to take a 2-1 lead in the series.
Team Liquid kept the ball rolling in Game 4 as early rotations netted the team a lead in kills and turrets. eUnited struggled with vision control as it got picked apart by Team Liquid in teamfights and lost objectives. Securing yet another early Baron buff, this time near the 22-minute mark, Team Liquid methodically knocked down the bottom lane inhibitor, securing a 13,000-gold lead. There wasn't much eUnited could do as Team Liquid closed out the series with a 16-3 kill advantage.
Team Liquid faces off against Gold Coin United with a LCS spot on the line Saturday at 3 p.m. ET with the loser set to challenge the winner of eUnited versus Team EnVyUs on Sunday at 3 p.m. ET.