Setsuna “Dogie” Ignacio and Nexplay Esports finally snapped out of their slump as they fended off Cignal Ultra, 2-1, in the MPL Philippines Season 7 on Sunday, April 18.
NXP overcame a rocky start caused by Cignal’s feeding Diggie strategy in the deciding Game 3 to arrest its four-game losing skid.
Cignal was able to give John Paul “H2wo” Salonga’s Ling a hard time in the jungle but James “Jeymz” Gloria’s Benedetta and Renejay “RENEJAY” Barcarse’s Alice dominated the side lanes.
Jeyzm came through a 2v1 outplay against Jefferson “Kekedot” Mogol’s Natalia and Jhones “RHEA” De Leon’s Chou at the top lane while the rest of NXP wiped out the three other Cignal heroes at the mid.
Dogie’s boys then went straight for the base and sealed the 29-7 triumph in 12 minutes, with Jeyzm emerging as the MVP of the game with a perfect record of eight kills and an assist.
It was NXP’s first victory since sweeping reigning MPL-PH and world champion Bren Esports back in Week 1.
Dogie’s squad improved to eight points on a 2-5 series win-loss record to surpass Smart Omega at No. 3 in Group B at the moment.
On the other hand, the woes of coach Denver “Yebmaester” Mranda’s team continued as it lost all four matches in its debut week this season.
Cignal remained at the Group A cellar with only two points to show.
NXP drew first blood in the series as Tristan “Yawi” Cabrera on his Jawhead roamed around the map to set up pickoffs and enable RENEJAY’s Claude to take over for a 15-3 romp.
Cignal was able to bounce back in Game 2 behind Arvie “Aquaboy” Antonio’s Wanwan with massive damage and Benson “Bensanity” Paglinawan’s Silvanna with his playmaking brilliance to power the 16-4 win in 12 minutes.
Bensanity had an early impact with his Diggie in Game 3 but his sidelane teammates failed to capitalize on their advantage as Jeymz’s Benedetta and RENEJAY’s Alice stepped up to lead NXP back to its winning ways.