Finals: Jacob Wilson vs. Cory Teran
Jacob Wilson has become known for his success with RUG Delver, but he’s recently been experimenting with U/W/R Delver in Legacy Opens, with two Top 8s to his name thus far.
Jacob's been very successful with every flavor of Delver.
On the play, Cory began by fetching Bayou and passing the turn. Jacob led Delver+of+Secrets off Tundra, holding Gitaxian+Probe in order to give his Force a blue card that wouldn’t require him to exile Daze. The Hymn Cory fired put Jacob into the tank, and he eventually decided to Daze.
That meant he couldn’t cast Stoneforge+Mystic on the next turn, but revealing Brainstorm to Delver made it all worthwhile Gitaxian+Probe revealed two Lilianas, Wasteland, Grove+of+the+Burnwillows, and Verdant+Catacombs. Playing Scalding Tarn, Jacob kept that Wasteland free of targets.
Cory drew Punishing+Fire and aimed it at the Delver, slaying the 3/2. Jacob fetched Tundra with his Tarn before playing Stoneforge+Mystic off a Volcanic+Island, grabbing Batterskull. He knew Cory could aim the Wasteland at his Tundra, but with a spare in hand and access to Force+of+Will for Liliana or Fire, he was in decent shape despite the removal Cory had.
Playing Grove, Cory picked up the Punishing+Fire and attempted to use it on the Mystic. Force stepped in, and Cory did Wasteland the Tundra. Playing his other one, Jacob passed the turn. Batterskull dropped into play once Cory had used Punishing+Fire on the Mystic, and Jacob was on the wall now. He Pondered, finding nothing much in the top three but electing to keep Lightning+Bolt before casting Stoneforge+Mystic to get Umezawa’s Jitte, shuffling.
Cory continued to chain Punishing Fore against the Stoneforged menace, finding another red source that would enable him to pick it up against Batterskull’s own damage. He tapped out, however, in order to cast Dark+Confidant. When Jacob drew his second Swords, he knew his Germ token would not be long for this world—he had no way to stop the incoming Liliana+of+the+Veil. He’d need a little help... An attack sent Cory into the tank as he debated blocking, with Jacob no doubt hoping he’d decline, but eventually Cory binned the Bob.
Liliana+of+the+Veil from Cory took out the Germ, and Jacob drew and then passed—he was out of gas. Cory eventually found a Tarmogoyf, but the big green man went Plowing shortly after resolving, and Lightning+Bolt dispensed with Liliana+of+the+Veil. Wasteland from Jacob hit Grove, but Cory got one more Punishing+Fire out of the deal.
The second Liliana landed, boosting to four loyalty as Cory attempted to grind Jacob out of cards. Cory drew and played Bloodbraid+Elf, throwing a Punishing+Fire at Jacob’s head and emptying both players’ hands of cards. A Dark+Confidant and then a Deathrite+Shaman followed, and even Jacob’s bolstered life total was getting low.
Finding running lands, Jacob was able to bounce and replay Batterskull just before Liliana went ultimate, buying time, but Cory’s board only continued to grow, and it was soon over.
Cory seeks the Fire!
Cory 1, Jacob 0
Jacob Pondered on turn 1, keeping the top three in place before passing. Cory fetched up Swamp to start his side of the game, casting Thoughtseize to see two Stoneforge+Mystics, Brainstorm, Ponder, Lightning+Bolt, and Wasteland. Jacob had hidden a white source on top of his deck with Ponder, which Cory had to suspect in this situation—he eventually elected to discard one Mystic.
Drawing his Tundra, Jacob cast Mystic to search his deck for Batterskull. Wasteland took away Jacob’s Tundra, likely buying Cory a turn of freedom, and he cast Deathrite+Shaman. Jacob did find Misty+Rainforest in his draw step, however, and that meant he could fetch another Tundra and deploy the Batterskull, if he wanted. Instead, he fetched Tundra and Pondered up Delver+of+Secrets, Bolting the Shaman before attacking.
Cory had another shot to do something about that Mystic, but could only resolve Tarmogoyf. Jacob untapped, Wasted his Grove, and then passed with Batterskull clearly coming down. Cory fetched Bayou, cast Dark+Confidant, and then ended the turn. Jacob had another Wasteland, but he instead opted to cast True-Name+Nemesis.
Bob revealed land, and Cory made it to three mana. Fetching Badlands, he had nothing to cast, and ended the turn. Jacob had to mark that as odd, but started his next turn with Brainstorm. Gitaxian+Probe offered him a way to see what was going on, and that sent Cory to Golgari+Charm in response, using the -1/-1 mode. That would kill Dark+Confidant and Nemesis—Jacob tanked, and decided to Spell+Pierce it.
Cory’s remaining cards were Deathrite+Shaman and lands, making Wasteland less attractive this turn—especially as one of Jacob’s lands was Grove. The Nemesis attacked for 3 damage, putting Cory to 11 life, and Jacob ended the turn. Bob revealed another Grove, and Cory revealed his actual draw step had given him Thoughtseize. Jacob lost his Ponder, but now he was able to threaten a lethal attack in two turns, with Dark Confidant’s help.
Jacob attacked for 3 damage and cast the Delver+of+Secrets, holding up Lightning+Bolt. Cory fetched to 5 life, grabbing Bayou, and then took zero from Bob once more! It was Golgari+Charm or bust on this board though... and Cory didn’t have one.
Cory 1, Jacob 1
Cory mulliganed to begin the decider, while Jacob kept his hand. Grove+of+the+Burnwillows offered no resistance for Jacob’s turn 1 Delver+of+Secrets, and Cory followed with Dark+Confidant—that merited Lightning+Bolt after a Ponder.
Delver revealed Spell+Pierce and put Cory to 16, and he appeared visibly deflated as Cory cast Stoneforge+Mystic for Batterskull with a third land untapped to turn on that Pierce. Bloodbraid+Elf into Punishing+Fire earned a Daze on Fire from Jacob, and the Elf looked to try and even things up.
Cory fell to 13 from the Delver, and Jacob ended the turn with three mana up. Cory played Deathrite+Shaman, and Jacob fetched Tundra prior to putting in Batterskull, just to be safe with that Spell+Pierce. Cory forced him to burn it by recurring Fire on the Delver, and Jacob untapped with a lot of power in play.
Attacking for 7, the Elf blocked that Germ saw Cory fall to 10 life, with True-Name+Nemesis from Jacob following afterward. Cory was incredibly far behind at this stage, and Jacob had also rolled up a Force+of+Will thanks to that Ponder—it would be almost impossible to break him from here. Putting in the effort, Cory fetched a fifth land and cast Liliana+of+the+Veil, which -2’d to kill Mystic before Cory cast Tarmogoyf.
Untapping into a fifth land, Jacob moved Batterskull over to True-Name and got in exactsies.
Cory 1, Jacob 2