Sasha “Scarlett” Hostyn is the darkhorse of the World Championship Series Summer Circuit Championship, which takes place at DreamHack Montreal this weekend. It’s one of the last major tournaments before the WCS Global Playoffs at Blizzcon, and the winner of the Summer Circuit will be seeded directly into the Blizzcon tournament. Currently, Scarlett currently sits around 600 WCS circuit points; she’d need to earn nearly 2,000 more to break into the top 8 and qualify for the playoffs—unless she takes the whole tournament. It’s not going to be easy for her to get to Anaheim, unless she plays incredibly well at the Summer Circuit Championships.
And that’s not something that would be particularly surprising. Despite spending a lot of time in South Korea, Scarlett is a Canadian gal at heart. It’s where she won her first major tournament in the competitive StarCraft II scene; in 2012, she just sort of started winning everything, starting with the WCS: Canada tournament. Canada is her home turf, and I think a huge win there would be particularly rewarding—not to mention the WCS Global Playoffs seed. She’s due for another win in Canada, but a lot has to go her way.
She’s due for another win in Canada.
Scarlett “quit” StarCraft II in 2015. She had a short-lived retirement, but up until recently, she hasn’t played the same. She took some hard losses while competing in Korea earlier this year. She was in her own head, which is a problem for an analytical player like Scarlett. She needs to be focused. In 2014, she told The New Yorker that focus is the big problem she has with streaming her games. It’s just really hard to keep focused. “I’ve lost a tournament because I didn’t see a dot for a few seconds,” she said “Like, I lost thousands of dollars because I didn’t see a single red dot. It’s a big deal.” If something else is on her mind, she’ll play bad—which, I think, has played into her less-than-great results.
Redemption is on her mind, and her performance in the past couple months shows it. Scarlett’s creep spread is taking root. Blink once and she’s spread it all the way to your front door. Scarlett’s Liquipedia page says she’s not a fan of her title as the Queen of Blades, a reference to the nom de guerre one of StarCraft II lore’s primary antagonists, but I think she wants to retake her throne. This year, she’s proved she could take on top players once again, the best of the best. Scarlett wants to be a champion again.
The Canadian Zerg came out on the top of her bracket in the Neo Star League 2016 International, where she went on to face Huang “Cyan” Min—something that scares her first opponent in the Summer Championship. “Not going to stream tonight,” puCK posted to Twitter. “I have to get ready for [Scarlett]. Heard she almost beat the best Protoss in the world, Cyan.”
The Summer Circuit Champion is Scarlett’s for the taking.
(Side-note: Sad to see that Scarlett and puCK are meeting in the first round. I like watching puCK play, but I’ll still be rooting for Scarlett.)
The Summer Circuit Champion is Scarlett’s for the taking. Her fans have confidence in her—and if she’s feeling good, she’s primed for a massive run. The tournament begins August 12 and runs through August 14 during the DreamHack Open: Montreal weekend. That’s when you’ll want to tune in to watch Scarlett absolutely obliterate all other players. All of them. Even the ones she’s not playing.
Creep spread everywhere, you guys. Creep spread everywhere.
Header image courtesy Kevin Chang.