Finals: Chris Boozer vs. Andrew Schneider
A near-identical mirror match featured Andrew Schneider, an Open champion thanks to his last effort with U/R Delver, playing Chris Boozer (in his second Top 8 of Open Series: Birmingham). Eager to catch up on trophies with Tony Chu, Andrew was eager to take down the tournament.
Andrew's experience with the matchup gives him an edge in the finals.
Volcanic+Island and Goblin+Guide (revealing Goblin+Guide) started the game in Andrew's favor, and Chris fetched for Mountain prior to casting Chain+Lightning on the Goblin. Turn 2 Delver+of+Secrets and fetchland for Andrew kept the pressure on, but Chris had Lightning Boltâ€”Andrew had Spell Pierce to defend. Fetching with Arid+Mesa for Mountain, Chris swung with Goblin Guide and revealed Force+of+Will.
â€œOf course, best card in the matchup,â€ Andrew said. He at least got to reveal it to Delver, and after flipping cast Ponder to keep his top three. Arid+Mesa and an attack followed before Andrew passed the turn. Chris pointed his second Chain+Lightning at Aberration, and Andrew considered Chaining it back. He responded with a fetch for Mountain, and Chained it into Goblin+Guide which let Chris Chain it back into Andrew.
Andrew Brainstormed on the next turn, shipping back a pair of Forces and playing Arid+Mesa, then Delver+of+Secrets. Chris had Snapcaster Mage to Chain+Lightning Delverâ€”he lost his Snapcaster+Mage due to that error when Andrew Chained it back after fetching. Should've used the Boltâ€”he realized it instantly after the error.
Chris was lucky that Andrew had no more gas, and he cast two Delver+of+Secrets on the next turn to seize the lead. Lightning+Bolt slew one, Andrew finding Ponder on top to deliver him Chain+Lightning, which Andrew Chained back to him. The life totals were 8 apiece.
Another Ponder from Andrew, this one shuffling him to Grim Lavamancer. Chris passed, giving Andrew an active Lavamancerâ€”the second one he drew made it all the sweeter. Far behind against that, Chris passed with plenty of cards in his hand. When Andrew drew Lightning+Bolt, Chris Spell Pierced and Dazed it just to stay alive through Lavamancer activations.
He died on the following turn instead.
Chris is down a game and frowny.
Andrew 1, Chris 0
Chris kept his starter while Andrew mulliganed to six, and Chris began with Island and Delver+of+Secrets, which died to Chain+Lightning. Misty+Rainforest and pass for turn 2, while Andrew played his own fetchland and resolved Grim+Lavamancer. Surgical+Extraction on Chain+Lightning during the end step revealed Snapcaster+Mage, Force+of+Will, Lightning+Bolt, and Spell+Pierce.
The makeshift Probe also told Chris how he needed to play to kill that Lavamancer, so he remained patient and just played another fetchland on turn 3. Andrew drew Goblin+Guide to add a more significant threat, revealing Chain+Lightning on top of his deck.
Chris drew the Chain and fetched with Arid+Mesa for Mountain before casting it on Guide. Andrew immediately replied with Force+of+Will removing Spell+Pierce, and Chris fetched Volcanic+Island in order to Red Elemental Blast the Force. Andrew fetched Volcanic+Island during the end step and sent 2 damage into Chris with Lavamancer.
Still during his own end step, Chris Extracted Goblin Guidesâ€”he was very actively trying to run Andrew's deck low on spells, but Andrew already had a great pair with Lavamancer and Snapcaster around. He drew Misty+Rainforest and attacked Chris to 9 with Lavamancer. Chris passed, and fell to 6 when Andrew cast Lightning+Bolt before fetching Island.
Andrew 2, Chris 0