After nearly four months, the final two Challengers have finished, and the champion of the post-season tournament is #10 seed lazybear, who won 9-6 over #1 seed turnipboy.
lazybear joined the SCL in week 3, and it became obvious as this tournament progressed that it was a lack of punctuality and not skill that accounted for their seeding. There was a close call in round one (9-7 over walliard), but he seemed to gain strength after that, dispatching even tough opponents like pofke with room to spare. lazybear’s reward is an auto-promote next season, and priority for more in the likely event of a division restructuring.
For turnipboy, it’s a strong tournament overall, but another narrow miss for guaranteed promotion. The Challenger tournament was seeded based on regular season results excluding the top two regular season finishers, so being the #1 seed heading into it, and losing in the finals, means turnipboy has barely missed the auto-promotion cut twice. But he showed himself to be a formidable opponent, and the aforementioned restructuring makes an advancement out of Challenger very likely in SCL Season 5.
Congratulations to both finalists, and indeed the Challenger division as a whole, which featured inspired leaps in ability from dozens of new players. Don’t be surprised if a lot of the names we discussed in this space all season start climbing the SCL divisions in earnest.