Cloud9 took down Golden Guardians today in their first game of the 2022 LCS Spring Split, surprising their opponents with Ivern mid.

Visa issues prevented C9 from playing with its intended starting lineup in the 2022 Lock In tournament, instead using an Academy-LCS hybrid team. Their opponents, Golden Guardians, were in a similar position. Going into today’s match, both squads were looking to make a statement in their first game together as a team. Entering the match as the underdogs, Golden Guardians fought hard early on.

Golden Guardians got the early lead against C9 and held a 3,000 gold lead at 13 minutes off of an impressive early game from jungler Pridestalker. They attempted to extend that early-game lead into first turret gold, but C9 thwarted those plans and proceeded to kill everyone on Golden Guardians, in part because Ivern’s shielding made C9’s carries virtually unkillable.

Golden Guardians still held a gold lead into the mid game, but C9 maintained the tempo advantage. This was capped off by an impressive dragon take from C9 where top laner Summit was able to distract Golden Guardians from the objective while also staying alive. 

C9 outmaneuvered Golden Guardians once more when they turned toward the Baron and killed three Golden Guardians members, ultimately ending the game in a strong 26-minute victory.

C9 jungler Blaber was a standout on Gwen. The 2021 LCS Spring Split MVP led C9 in the mid to late game teamfights while Fudge’s Ivern was a surprise pick that came together in the late game to help C9 AD carry Berserker freely fight without stress.

In their first game as a full five-man stack, C9 showcased an incredible understanding of macro play and mechanical skill after their mid to late-game dominance against Golden Guardians.

C9 will look to build off this impressive victory tomorrow, Feb. 6, against Evil Geniuses. Golden Guardians, on the other hand, will try to grab a win in week one against FlyQuest.