Credit: PGL

MOUZ eliminate NiP from IEM Cologne 2022

"dexter" and his troops secure Quarter-finals at IEM Cologne 2022

We are slowly but surely nearing a conclusion to the ongoing IEM Cologne 2022 event, with only eight teams left battling for a chance to lift the prestigious trophy in Cologne, Germany. Fighting for a chance to advance to the Quarter-finals were NiP and MOUZ in Group A of the event. Both teams have suffered a defeat so far in the Group Stage, however, with NiP taking down both Heroic and G2 along the way, the Scandinavians were the favorites going into the Bo3-series for survival. It was, however, the European roster of MOUZ to prove themselves as the stronger roster on the day. Going all three maps, it was ultimately MOUZ to prove the more resilient team and to claim victory against NiP, avoid elimination from the event, and secure a spot in the Quarter-finals.

The first map of the Bo3-series was picked by MOUZ and saw the two teams climb the heights of Vertigo to kick things off. Vertigo has been a strong suit for "dexter" and his troops as of late and with a win-percentage of 70% in the past three months (10 maps), it is no surprise that the European roster of MOUZ opted for Vertigo as their map pick. Despite the numbers telling a different story, NiP proved that they themselves are more than capable on Vertigo once things got going. Starting on the favored CT-side of Vertigo, NiP posted a strong defense against MOUZ's offense. At the scoreline of 9-6, favoring NiP, the two teams switched sides. It was expected that MOUZ, as they have done in previous Bo3-series, would put up a stronger performance on their CT-side in the second half. This, however, wasn't the case. An aggressive offense from the Scandinavians, spearheaded by superstar "Brollan", was too much for MOUZ to handle at the scoreline of 16-9, NiP claimed victory.

The second map of the brawl between NiP and MOUZ took place on Inferno and was, of course, picked by NiP. Whilst Inferno is known as the perfect third-map decider, it has been one of NiP's most picked maps as of recent times, and for a good reason. Carrying over the momentum from Vertigo, a strong start to the first half of Inferno was put up by NiP. Failing to silence the two Swedish star players in "Brollan" and "REZ", MOUZ had to see themselves behind at the scoreline of 9-6 before giving the T-side a go of their own. Whilst NiP are known for their strong CT-sides, the second half saw the Scandinavians in big trouble as "dexter" and his troops began piling on the pressure. Thanks to great mid-round calling from the Australian IGL and a cohesive roster behind him, MOUZ were able to close out Inferno at 16-12 after winning 10 rounds on their T-side.

The third and final map of the Bo3-series was set to take place on Mirage. With momentum carrying over from the battle on Inferno, as well as a "torzsi" that can outright win games on his own accord if he is feeling himself on Mirage, it seemed as if MOUZ had the upper hand going into the deciding map of Mirage. It was also MOUZ, this time on their CT-side, to come flying out of the gate. Leaving NiP completely stunned on their offense, the European roster of MOUZ seemed unstoppable in the first half of Mirage and were able to close out their CT-side with a 12-3 lead. After having switched sides, NiP would have to put up an incredible comeback to have a chance at securing their life at IEM Cologne 2022. A comeback, however, never happened. Instead, it was MOUZ to finish what they had started in the first half and claim victory at the dominating scoreline of 16-3.

Highlight of the Bo3-series:

NiP - MOUZ 2-0 | IEM Cologne

16-9 (Vertigo) | Brollan - 1.41 Rating / 24-15 K-D / 97.6 ADR

16-12 (Inferno) | torszi - 1.16 Rating / 19-16 K-D / 61.5 ADR

16-8 (Mirage) | frozen - 1.62 Rating / 18-7 K-D / 97.3 ADR

MVP: David "frozen Čerňanský - 1.20 Rating / 51-39 K-D / 74.5 ADR

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