Reign edge Defiant at Countdown Cup qualifiers

The Atlanta Reign pulled out a five-map victory against the Toronto Defiant among first day action in qualifying for the Overwatch League's Countdown Cup on Thursday.

The Reign surged out to a 2-0 lead by winning 2-0 on Nepal and 2-1 on Paraiso before seeing their lead evaporate via a 2-1 loss on Circuit Royal and a 1-0 defeat on Colosseo.

That set up a winner-take-all final map on Ilios, where Atlanta buckled down for a 2-0 win.

Joining Atlanta in the West Region winner's circle were the Boston Uprising and the Dallas Fuel, both 3-1 winners.

The Houston Outlaws put Boston on its heels, taking Oasis 2-0 to open the game. The Uprising lived up their name, however, taking the next three maps. They won 1-0 on Eichenwalde, 2-1 on Route 66 and 1-0 on Colosseo.

Dallas was slightly more methodical in taking out the Washington Justice, winning Map 1, losing the second, and then taking the final two.

The Fuel won 2-0 on Lijiang Tower, lost 3-2 on King's Row and then prevailed by matching 1-0 scores on Route 66 and New Queen Street.

The six teams in the West Region that finish the regular season with the most league points will qualify for the playoffs, while the top three finishers in the East Region will do the same.

The other berths in each playoff bracket will be determined through the play-ins taking place Oct. 14-15 in the East and Oct. 21-22 in the West as part of the Countdown Cup. Two West playoff bids will be awarded via the Countdown Cup, while one East playoff bid will be at stake.

The double-elimination playoffs begin Oct. 30. The playoff bracket will culminate in the first in-person Grand Finals in three years at the Anaheim (Calif.) Convention Center on Nov. 4. The grand prize is $1 million, while the runner-up team will earn $500,000.

Friday's qualifying includes five matches:
--(East) Hangzhou Spark vs. Chengdu Hunters
--(East) Seoul Dynasty vs. Los Angeles Valiant
--(West) Paris Eternal vs. London Spitfire
--(West) Florida Mayhem vs. Los Angeles Gladiators
--(West) Toronto Defiant vs. New York Excelsior

Overwatch League -- Countdown Cup standings, with points, match record and map differential
West
T1. Boston Uprising, 1 point, 1-0, plus-2
T1. Dallas Fuel, 1 point, 1-0, plus-2
3. Atlanta Reign, 1 point, 1-0, plus-1
T4. London Spitfire, 0 points, 0-0, even
T4. Paris Eternal, 0 points, 0-0, even
T4. Vancouver Titans, 0 points, 0-0, even
T4. New York Excelsior, 0 points, 0-0, even
T4. San Francisco Shock, 0 points, 0-0, even
T4. Los Angeles Gladiators, 0 points, 0-0, even
T4. Florida Mayhem, 0 points, 0-0, even
11. Toronto Defiant, 0 points, 0-1, minus-1
T12. Houston Outlaws, 0 points, 0-1, minus-2
T12. Washington Justice, 0 points, 0-1, minus-2
East
T1. Philadelphia Fusion, 0 points, 0-0, even
T1. Shanghai Dragons, 0 points, 0-0, even
T1. Hangzhou Spark, 0 points, 0-0, even
T1. Los Angeles Valiant, 0 points, 0-0, even
T1. Seoul Dynasty, 0 points, 0-0, even
T1. Guangzhou Charge, 0 points, 0-0, even
T1. Chengdu Hunters, 0 points, 0-0, even

--Field Level Media

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