TenZ talks Sentinels’ “hectic” season after LCQ elimination

Declan Mclaughlin
TenZ Sentinels

Sentinels and TenZ lost to Leviatán 2-0 in the VCT Americas LCQ after two months of grinding practice in preparation for a qualification run to Valorant Champions.

It is no secret that Sentinels took the VCT Americas LCQ tournament very seriously. The team’s coach, Adam ‘kaplan’ Kaplan, said in the lead-up to the event that they were grinding non-stop in practice and review sessions.

But ultimately, the grueling schedule leading up to the tournament was not enough for Sentinels to earn a spot at Valorant Champions. The squad was sent down to the lower bracket on July 17 before losing to Leviatán a day later.

TenZ said it was disappointing for the team to fail to meet their expectations and see all that hard work go unrewarded.

“We were doing a lot of VOD review, we’re doing a lot of just scrims in general… it was pretty busy. I think we were doing like six days a week,” TenZ told Dexerto after the match.

“I’m sure there were glimpses of brilliance when we were playing. Times that we were just flowing and playing to our absolute best. And other times, you might have seen that we were kind of like tossing some rounds, maybe the comms got overheated a little bit too much. Maybe there was like a misstep or something unfortunate happened,” he said.

The Sentinels star said that the quality of practice was not always best before LCQ as the best teams in the Americas were in Japan playing at VCT Masters Tokyo. The best tier-two practice partners, like The Guard and M80, were also absent as they went to compete in the Americas Ascension tournament in Brazil.

“I didn’t really know some of the teams that we were playing and there were definitely some interesting comps sometimes,” he said.

Sentinels and TenZ end VCT season at Americas LCQ

Sentinels had a litany of issues during the season. The team’s substitute player Hunter ‘SicK’ Mims was jailed twice for criminal trespassing and was internally suspended by the Sentinels. The organization signed Jimmy ‘Marved’ Nguyen to replace SicK as a sub and the player was almost immediately thrust into the starting lineup to replace TenZ due to an illness and a finger injury.

The organization also let go of the team’s original head coach and IGL during the VCT Americas split.

When asked about his season as a whole, TenZ described the year as “pretty hectic.”

“Just considering the fact that we had a lot of issues early on, at like the creation of the team like midway through [the season], and then finally we were able to settle to this point. Which we’ve probably played our best and performed our best with this roster that we currently have,” TenZ said.

Sentinels VCT LOCK//IN
The old Sentinels lineup at VCT LOCK//IN

The 22-year-old player also said competing in the VCT Americas league was tiring compared to previous seasons when qualifiers for international tournaments were played from home.

“There’s a crowd watching, all eyes are on you. It takes a lot more of like your energy to play I’d say rather than just like playing from home in your undies, like how prior Sentinels rosters might have,” TenZ said.

When asked how he will look back on this season, TenZ said the current iteration of the squad built a good foundation that can be worked on, and that he learned a lot individually about his role in-game.

Whether the team will be able to build on this foundation is unknown. His contract runs out at the end of the year, and many expect Sentinels to overhaul their roster in the off-season.

“I’m a bit sad,” TenZ said. “But life moves on.”

Sign up to Dexerto for free and receive:
Fewer Ads|Dark Mode|Deals in Gaming, TV and Movies, and Tech