Finals: Jacob Kory vs. Jack Colwell
These two friends found themselves fighting over a trophy in the finals of the Las Vegas Legacy Open with two decks that couldn’t be more different from each other.
This isn't the first time Jacob has piloted Dark Ritual to a top finish.
Jack kept his opening hand, happy to spot Rest in Peace already there waiting for him. If he could resolve that on turn 2, Jacob would be forced to try and Ritual out a Griselbrand or Tendrils kill, which was basically never going to work. Jacob wound up mulliganing to six cards and beginning with Gitaxian Probe after Jack played a land and passed.
“Well, that sucks,” Jacob admitted as he spied Rest in Peace, Force of Will, and Brainstorm in Jack’s hand. Playing Lotus Petal and popping it for blue mana, Jacob played Brainstorm. He played a fetchland afterward and searched up Underground Sea to cast Cabal Therapy on Jack. He played Brainstorm in response, hiding Rest in Peace and a Force of Will.
When Jacob named Rest in Peace and saw it wasn’t there, he debated a concession on the spot. Of course, Jack had correctly hidden it and resolved the enchantment on the next turn.
The game was functionally over barring only the most incredible circumstances, and Jack’s Vendilion Clique revealed Jacob’s hand but mostly created a quick clock to close the game out well before any kill could realistically be assembled. Cycling away Silence, Jack began the beatdown.
Jack 1, Jacob 0
Jack's maindeck Rest in Peace did some heavy lifting in game 1.
Jacob kept and Jack mulliganed, reversing the pattern of the previous game. Could Jacob also turn this game into win? Jacob began with Ponder on turn 1 off Underground Sea, hoping to set up a kill on turn 2 or 3. Jack began with Sensei’s Divining Top, and crossed his fingers.
Fetching Tundra, Jacob cast Thoughtseize to spy two Counterbalances and an Entreat the Angels. Taking the Entreat—and resigning himself to the fight against Counterbalance—he followed up with Children of Korlis. Jack, of course, tapped out on turn 2 to play Counterbalance.
The Children attacked Jack to 18, and Jacob passed the turn—that was bad for him. Jack spun Top in his upkeep and found Counterbalance near the top, meaning it would be very difficult for Jacob to resolve Shallow Grave or Goryo’s Vengeance. His Children beatdown plan might be more necessary than he thought...
When Jack found Enlightened Tutor near the top, he now had a floater on one that could eventually find Rest in Peace. The Children beatdown plan began looking more and more serious, with Jack going to 13 as he continued to play lands. Jack had assembled Enlightened Tutor and Helm of Obedience, making him capable of going for the Helm kill as soon as he deemed it safe.
Once he found Force of Will, the time seemed to be nigh. On the following turn, Jack cast Helm of Obedience and passed, preparing to tutor for Rest in Peace before his next draw step. Jacob tried a Cabal Therapy but met Counterbalance revealing Top, and Jack decided to give it another turn, maximizing the mana he had available.
After Children knocked Jack to 8, he popped Top and cast Enlightened Tutor. Once it resolved, Rest in Peace went to the top of his library, and the end of the game was nigh. When Jack cast Rest in Peace, Jacob replied with Hurkyll’s Recall. Jack responded to that with Brainstorm, and Jacob prepared his own response to Brainstorm. He cast Dark Ritual, but Enlightened Tutor on top of the deck countered that.
Brainstorm resolved, tossing back a Counterbalance to reveal to Recall. With the trigger still stacked, Jacob fetched and cast Dark Ritual, forcing Jack to spin the Tutor back up and then spin the Counterbalance in the way of Hurkyll’s Recall.
Still in response to Rest in Peace, Jacob fetched. “I’m probably drawing dead here,” he admitted. Entomb from the hand sought to chuck a creature into the graveyard, and Jack went deep, wondering what Jacob’s goal here was. He let it resolve, and Emrakul hit the bin to shuffle all of Jacob’s cards back.
Helm did the rest.
Jack 2, Jacob 0