The $500 Stropse 2v2 Valentine’s Day Tourney, hosted by Down Two Earth, didn’t go quite as planned for the duo of Ell5o5 and Jbot, but in the spirit of the holiday, friendships were formed and fun was had en route to a 0-2 evening.
Featuring teams of two, one male Rocket League pro and one female content creator, the double-elimination tournament hosted some big names in competitive gaming. Chrome and Kate took home the crown, winning all five of their series, including a best-of-five reverse sweep in the Grand Final.
It wasn’t all bad for Ell5o5 and Jbot. Under the team name silverstratz<3, the team took a game in each of its two series. In the opening round, the two faced off against Fishhr and Kitties, who competed under the name hotgurlz, and fell in the nail-biting third game of the best of three. Jbot got the team within one goal with under 30 seconds to play, but the hotgurlz, who made it to the loser’s finals, played some solid defense to keep the advantage.
“[The confidence level going in] was high,” Jbot said. “The dude on the other team, Fishhr, is god-awful, at not only Rocket League, but just life… After game one, they hit us with the mental strat of saying that the server was lagging and that’s why they lost. I’m firmly believing that that was sort of a psychological trick and not true, so I’m a little salty about that, admittedly.”
Earlier in the match, the duo won its opening game in 4-3 fashion, which included a huge defensive play from Ell5o5 in the dying seconds. However, the momentum quickly halted with a 5-3 loss and the aforementioned game three heartbreaker, but Ell5o5 understood the real reason for the loss, saying, “I’m jealous of their name, so they can take it.”
As one of the top-16 most talented pairings in the tournament, the two were ready to jump back into the action with a more elaborate strategy.
“We’re kind of thinking about maybe trying to win next time,” Jbot said. “That’s probably gameplan No. 1. No. 2, I need to pass better to Ell; I was slacking on the passes. I passed it to her once while she was humping the inside of the post and she scored, so clearly the strategy is there, we just need to develop it more and commit to it.”
In loser’s round one, silverstratz<3 took home a game two 7-4 win over Rapid and Jessa. Ell5o5 was the MVP of the match with four assists, setting Jbot up for seven easy, tap-in goals that required no effort at all. Unfortunately, that was one of only two score lines silverstratz<3 was able to be on the winning side of, as it fell 6-5 in game one and 6-2 in the match-deciding game three to be knocked out of the tournament, but despite that, Ell5o5 said, “[The team chemistry] is always good when I’m with Jbot.”
“[Team chemistry] was our best trait I think as a team,” Jbot said. “We were connecting and making passes… The synergy was certainly there. and I think if we could just practice the other passing method, we’d definitely come out with a W next time.”
Heading into the tournament, Down Two Earth (D2E) pro Jbot was hot off a win in SMUG 6 over CommRL, winning $1,000 at the end of January. The win certainly prepared him well, but he was unable to take advantage of his momentum.
“I played my good friend Comm in that and he got absolutely farmed. He’s terrible at 1v1s and I proved that on that day,” Jbot said. “He still got $250 from it, so he can’t be too mad. But he did get farmed and I feel a little bit bad for destroying him on stream like that, but it was fun. “
However, that clearly didn’t help his effort in this tournament as he was hard-carried by the incredible movement of Ell5o5, who even stayed on after being eliminated from the tournament to fine-tune her skill, while he bailed to get food.
“I was focusing on passing plays where I would pass to her, but little did I know, she’s actually Messi on the ball, so I should’ve tried to have her practice passing to me,” Jbot said. “I feel like we got the roles reversed a little bit… I basically didn’t exist on the field until the net was open for me to score.”
Big thanks to Jbot and Ell5o5 for the willingness to talk with me postgame a couple of times, and if I could give you a portion of the prize pool for these amazing quotes, I would. Check out more of Stropse’s Rocket League Tournament coverage on the competitive tab.