Gladiators sew up No. 1 seed in June Joust Western region

The June Joust qualifiers concluded Saturday in the Western region as the Los Angeles Gladiators, Dallas Fuel and San Francisco Shock picked up wins.

The top seed in the West went to the Los Angeles Gladiators (6-2, 6 points), who started the day with a 3-1 win over the Paris Eternal (3-5, 3 points). The Gladiators enjoyed strong performances from their entire starting roster, beating an Eternal team dealing with sudden retirements from key starters getting replaced by rookies.

The Gladiators started with a 2-0 win on Lijiang Tower, but Paris was quick to respond with a 3-2 win on Hanamura. With that map win, the Eternal eliminated the Washington Justice (5-3, 5 points) from June Joust contention. Los Angeles would go on to take Hollywood 3-0 and Junkertown 3-2 to secure a 3-1 series win, locking themselves into the first seed and ensuring that the Boston Uprising (3-5, 3 points) qualify for the June Joust Knockout round.

The Dallas Fuel (5-3, 8 points) picked up a 3-0 win over the Vancouver Titans (0-8, 0 points), locking in a June Joust Knockout round berth. The Fuel were dominant, taking Oasis 2-0, Volskaya Industries 2-0, and finishing the perfect sweep with a 3-0 win on Numbani.

The last game of the day saw the San Francisco Shock (7-1, 7 points) take down the Washington Justice 3-2. The Justice had already been eliminated from the June Joust, but Washington had a chance to play spoiler for San Francisco, who needed to win this series in order to earn a first-round bye.

The Justice started strong with a 2-0 win on Nepal, but the Shock were quick to respond with a 2-1 win on Volskaya Industries. Washington went ahead in Game 3, taking Numbani 4-3 in a hard-fought brawl, but again San Francisco responded, taking Rialto 3-1 on the back of strong double-shield poke play.

It all came down to a tiebreaker on Busan, where both teams played the common pseudo-GOATs composition. It came down to the very end, but the veteran poise of the Shock prevailed, taking the map 2-1 to secure the series win. The win gave the Shock the second seed, locking the Atlanta Reign (4-4, 4 points) into the third seed.

The OWL teams are competing in three weeks of matches to determine qualification for the June Joust’s double-elimination playoff brackets, which will be contested June 6-12.

The top six teams from the West and the top four teams from the East will make the initial playoff rounds. Two teams from each region will advance to the double-elimination final playoff round.

The June Joust Knockouts take place on Sunday with six matches:
New York Excelsior vs Hangzhou Spark (East)
Seoul Dynasty vs Shanghai Dragons (East)
Dallas Fuel vs Houston Outlaws (West)
Boston Uprising vs Atlanta Reign (West)
Los Angeles Gladiators vs TBD (West)
San Francisco Shock vs TBD (West)

Overwatch League standings by region, with win-loss record, map differential and league points

1. Dallas Fuel, 5-3, +7, 8
2. San Francisco Shock, 7-1, +13, 7
3. Houston Outlaws, 7-1, +12, 7
4. Los Angeles Gladiators, 6-2, +11, 6
5. Washington Justice, 5-3, +5, 5
6. Florida Mayhem, 4-4, -1, 5
7. Atlanta Reign, 4-4, +5, 4
8. Toronto Defiant, 4-4, -3, 4
9. Boston Uprising, 3-5, -4, 3
10. Paris Eternal, 3-5, -5, 3
T11. Vancouver Titans, 0-8, -20, 0
T11. London Spitfire, 0-8, -20, 0

1. Shanghai Dragons, 6-2, +9, 8
2. Seoul Dynasty, 6-2, +11, 6
3. Philadelphia Fusion, 6-2, +10, 6
4. Hangzhou Spark, 5-3, +8, 5
5. Chengdu Hunters, 4-4, +2, 4
6. New York Excelsior, 3-5, -6, 3
7. Guangzhou Charge, 2-6, -12, 2
8. Los Angeles Valiant, 0-8, -22

–By Noah Waltzer, Field Level Media

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