Quarterfinals: Jeff Hoogland vs. Caleb Scherer
Jeff and Caleb meet up with a spot in the semifinals on the line. Caleb opted for Temur Aetherworks, but Jeff went with a U/R Control build hoping to prey on Aetherworks decks. Would the gamble pay off for Jeff, or would Caleb continue winning with Aetherworks?
Jeff led with a pair of lands while Caleb fetched a Forest with Evolving Wilds and went for a turn-2 Servant of the Conduit, but it died to Galvanic Bombardment. Jeff hit his third land drop and Caleb landed a Vessel, leading Jeff to add an Aether Hub as Caleb cracked the Vessel, taking a Whirler Virtuoso. Caleb played Attune with Aether, getting a Mountain, then resolved the Whirler, but it died with the energy trigger on the stack, but Caleb had enough energy to respond and get a Thopter before it died.
Jeff hit land No. 5 and shipped, leading Caleb to attack for the first point of damage and play another copy of Attune, getting another Mountain. Caleb dropped the Mountain and went for a Chandra, Torch of Defiance but Jeff countered it with Summary Dismissal. Jeff continued with the land-go strategy as Caleb knocked him to 18 and went for Ishkanah, Grafwidow that brought along three spiders. Jeff hit another land and passed as Caleb used an Evolving Wilds to find an Island.
Caleb added Aether Hub to his board and attacked for seven before passing the turn, leading Jeff to fire off Glimmer of Genius so Caleb responded with an Ishkanah drain, bringing Jeff down to seven. Jeff took his turn and played a Torrential Gearhulk, using a free Harness Lightning to kill the Ishkanah and shipped the turn. Caleb untapped and played Emrakul, the Promised End, but before Caleb could take Jeff’s turn, Jeff picked up his cards.
Caleb 1, Jeff 0
Both players led with lands for the first three turns with the first play being Caleb landing Whirler Virtuoso, but it again died to Harness Lightning with the energy trigger on the stack. Caleb’s next play was a Tireless Tracker and an Aether Hub to get a clue as Jeff played Glimmer of Genius on the end step. Jeff untapped and killed the Tracker with Galvanic Bombardment and shipped the turn after playing his fifth land.
Caleb attempted to play Chandra, but Jeff had Negate, leading Caleb to resolve Attune with Aether for a Mountain. Jeff hit land No. 6 and deployed Thing in the Ice. Caleb used the clue to draw a card and passed after adding a land to his board. Jeff took a draw and passed back, leading Caleb to play Ishkanah, Grafwidow, but Jeff countered it with Void Shatter, ticking down the Thing. Jeff again passed with no play and Caleb went for World Breaker, targeting Jeff’s Wandering Fumarole with the cast trigger. Jeff responded with Summary Dismissal and Caleb tried to counter with Negate, but Jeff had Revolutionary Rebuff to win the counter war and keep his land, along with bringing Thing in the Ice down to one counter.
Caleb went for Aetherworks Marvel, but Jeff had Negate for it and the follow up Vessel, flipping his Thing in the Ice. Jeff attacked with the Awoken Horror and his Fumarole, dropping Caleb to 9, but Caleb ripped a Traverse the Ulvenwald and found Emrakul, which he resolved. Jeff used a Harness Lightning for no energy and then lost his Awoken Horror on his next turn.
Jeff took his next turn and passed after playing a land. Caleb knocked Jeff to seven and passed, but Jeff found a Gearhulk and got a free Glimmer that wasn’t needed as the Hulk and a Fumarole was lethal on the swing back.
Caleb 1, Jeff 1
Caleb kicked off the deciding game with Attune with Aether for an Island and passed as Jeff had Highland Lake. Caleb deployed Servant of the Conduit as Jeff played a land then took two on the next turn as Caleb followed the attack with a Whirler Virtuoso. Jeff fired off an end step Anticipate, untapped, and played Thing in the Ice. Caleb activated the Whirler twice at the end step, untapped, and played an Aether Hub and Harness Lightning on the Thing, clearing the way for his creatures to knock Jeff to 12. Caleb ended the turn with a Vessel.
Jeff took a draw and passed back, leading Caleb to swing in again, forcing Jeff to Harness the Whirler before falling to eight. Caleb cracked the Vessel and picked a Whirler off the reveal and played it. Jeff looked as his next draw, but didn’t have the answers for the board and extended the hand.
Caleb 2, Jeff 1