Finals: Mason Lange vs. Andrew Tenjum
The two hallmark aggressive Standard strategies squared off in the Madison finals, with Mason's G/R Aggro on the play thanks to his Swiss standings. Would Andrew overcome the disadvantage and take a win for Delver?
Mason's Strangleroot Geists did a lot of heavy lifting today!
Forest and Birds of Paradise began the match for Mason, but Andrew killed it with Gut Shot after playing Seachrome Coast. Strangleroot Geist continued the assault on Mason's side, getting in the first couple points. Andrew Pondered and shuffled after playing his Island, followed by drawing and passing the turn.
Another Strangleroot on Mason's team put Andrew to 12 early—not good on the draw in this matchup! He tapped out for Geist of Saint Traft, hoping Mason might slow down, but he showed no signs. Attacking for 4 more, Andrew added Huntmaster of the Fells to the battlefield and ended the turn representing lethal on the board.
That was tough news for Andrew! Vapor Snag targeting a Wolf token got some of the threats off the field, but Andrew had to fall to 4 to Dismember the Huntmaster and attack with his Geist, putting Mason to 15 life. Mason tried to attack for lethal, but Vapor Snag warded off the blow. He cast Wolfir Avenger afterwards, avoiding Mana Leak, and ended the turn.
“I'm dead,” Andrew announced, picking up his cards.
Mason 1, Andrew 0
Each player kept seven in game 2, Andrew starting with Delver of Secrets on turn 1. Mason's Llanowar Elves advanced his mana, but the flipped Delver on turn 2 put Andrew in the lead. The Probe he'd revealed then resolved, revealing Huntmaster, two Wolfir Avengers, two Strangleroot Geists, and Mountain. “Draw another land, and that hand is insane,” Andrew said.
Andrew's early Delver flip wasn't quite enough.
He cast Snapcaster Mage for the Probe to draw, and ended the turn. Mason cast Strangleroot Geist and passed the turn, attacking Andrew to 14. Andrew swung back for 5 damage, leaving Mason on 12. Then Andrew played Island and passed, likely leaning on a Mana Leak.
Mason swung with his Strangleroot and then played Llanowar Elves, passing once the Elf resolved. Andrew hadn't been able to Leak, fearing Wolfir Avenger, but it wasn't really that relevant anymore. He knocked Mason to 9 with his swing in the air from Delver, passing with Snapcaster Mage on defense. Surprising himself by resolving Huntmaster of the Fells, Mason took a lead on the board during the next turn—Andrew's four open lands offered no resistance.
Playing his second Moorland Haunt and still without white, Andrew Vapor Snagged Wolf token and swung with Snapcaster and Delver, earning the block from Huntmaster. That put Mason to 7, but his aggression was giving him a slight edge at the moment. He knocked Andrew to 5 with his Strangleroots and Elves.
Andrew untapped and attacked Mason to 4 with Insectile Aberration. Playing Island, he ended the turn. Green Sun's Zenith for two from Mason grabbed another Strangleroot Geist, and he tried to sneak in lethal damage—but Snapcaster Mage for Vapor Snag bounced a Strangleroot and blocked another one, leaving Andrew alive and Mason on 3 life... against a flying 3/2.
He cast Green Sun's Zenith for one after combat, taking advantage of Andrew's decision to Snag an attacker and block rather than just Snag or just block to stay alive regardless. The Birds of Paradise he searched for blocked the Aberration, and he fell to the ensuing assault on Mason's next turn.
Mason 2, Andrew 0