BcJ and XSET are prepared for a Lower Bracket run
North America’s Stage 1 Masters event in the Valorant Champions tour is underway. The first day, featuring two games from the Quarterfinals, has completed. One of those matches saw FaZe Clan quickly shut down XSET in a 2:0 victory. Following XSET’s loss to FaZe, Run It Back was allowed to speak with Brendan “BcJ” Jensen. Even in defeat, BcJ was confident and ready to move forward with a Lower Bracket run against whoever the tournament throws his way.
Run It Back: First and foremost, there are a lot of people who didn’t expect to see XSET in this position. Are you and the team proud to have made it to this first Masters event?
BcJ: If you take a step back and look at what we’ve done in such a short amount of time. I mean, I’ve only been on the team for three months. It is like a dream come true for me in a way, to get to play in Masters. Overall, we’re very happy to have gotten to Masters and with getting top four in two of the qualifiers. We beat some really big names, showing that we can compete here. I don’t see us slowing down or stopping just because we got here. We’re going to continue to grind. Any loss that we take now is a learning experience and we’re going to grow.
Run It Back: After beating FaZe Clan in the Lower Round of Challengers 2, did that set any expectations going into this match?
BcJ: We had to go in it with a clean slate. We knew they were bringing out a new comp. We knew they beat some really good opponents, such as 100 Thieves. We know they’re going to be much faster than they usually are. We drew it up with a clean slate. You kind of have to with the huge change that they were bringing.
Run It Back: babybay had a field day against you guys on Haven. When that happens, does the game plan change at all to target and try to shut down the player?
BcJ: For sure. I mean, every game you play, you’re going to target a few individuals. Most specifically Duelists. And then their smokes. If you want to get the Op (Operator) online, you try to target their smokes. For me, as Sova, I’m trying to use my utility to tag as many of the “carries” as I can. That’s a factor in big time matches. With him on Jett, we tried to shut him down. Their comp is just full support for him, though. It was pretty hard to do that. Hopefully we can learn from that and shut him down in the next match.
Run It Back: Did that tough loss on Haven hit the morale of the team? Or did you remain focused as the next map approached?
BcJ: Some, if not all of us were a little demotivated. Once we get the talk after the game, though. Like, “Hey, listen. It’s another map. We’ve got a BO3 to win.” Personally, I’m never going to let that hang over me or slow me down in a match. For some, it is easier than it is for others. At the end of the day, though, we’re going to get into that next map with the right mentality.
Run It Back: Bind was more of the same unfortunately. Your team managed to finish the first half on a good note. Did that lift the spirits a bit?
BcJ: Sometimes, when that happens, it does. We just get right back to it, crafting new theories and strats. It definitely depends on the map and the team we’re playing against. With FaZe, you don’t really get much time. These rounds go by so fast. You try to slow it down, but they keep up their aggression and the W Key mentality. That makes it harder to talk strategy and reset. It’s our job and our coach’s job to get us back in line. When the half swaps, we might only have a minute to talk about strats or get ourselves back in the mindset, but we get it done. We’re always in the right head space, thinking about new stuff. We are never just sitting there quietly.
Run It Back: XSET is headed to the Lower Bracket. How are you and the team looking to improve in order to stay alive in this first Masters event?
BcJ: We’re going to focus on fixing our mistakes rather than trying to look at the other teams’. Obviously, we are going to look at our Lower Bracket opponent. We need to work on our fundamentals, though. We’ve been really bad with our fundamentals. You know, getting trades, playing together, and just calling out stuff. It was a little slower today. If you want to beat a top tier team, you need to be at your peak. Your skill can take over and you can win it. When it comes to the Lower Bracket, it doesn’t affect us at all. We’ve been a Lower Bracket team for a few months now. Going into this, we’re ready, if not more ready than anyone else in the Lower Bracket.
*Questions and answers may have been slightly edited or altered for clarity and fluidity.*
Thank you to BcJ for the insightful interview. Best of luck to him and XSET going forward.
Stay tuned to Run It Back for more coverage of the Valorant Champions Tour, including Masters tournament details and player interviews!