Quarterfinals: Caleb Scherer vs. Ryan Fleischer
Both Caleb Scherer and Ryan Fleischer have had a breakout weekend already with an Invitational top 8, but both hoped to cement their name with a trophy finish. Only one could advance--would it be Caleb with W/U Heroic or Ryan with Abzan Reanimator?
Ryan and Caleb settling down for a battle.
Caleb kicked things off with a Favored Hoplite, and it took to the skies and bashed Ryan for 2 the following turn thanks to a Stratus Walk. Ryan had Sylvan Caryatid on his second turn to jump-start is game plan, while Caleb had no follow up after the Stratus Walk, only a Temple of Enlightenment and another swing in the air. Ryan had a conspicuously quiet turn 3, playing Windswept Heath and passing the turn. Caleb just played a Tranquil Cove and attacked for 2 again, sensing a removal spell, and his senses paid off as Ryan attempted a Murderous Cut at Caleb’s end step, which Caleb stymied with a Gods Willing.
Once again, Ryan played his land and passed without a play. Caleb was happy to attack again, now with a 3/4 flier, and dropped Ryan to 9. Caleb cast Heliod’s Pilgrim for Aqueous Form, but declined to cast it, and he had a second Gods Willing on his end step when Ryan went for Murderous Cut #2. Out of removal, Ryan began deploying his threats, casting a Courser of Kruphix, finding a land on top, and using it cast a second Courser.
With Ryan tapped out and the shields down, Caleb began suiting up, casting Defiant Strike and then Aqueous Form on his Favored Hoplite. He swung in for 7 to drop Ryan to 3, then passed. Ryan played a Caves of Koilos to jump back up to 5, then cast Whip of Erebos and came crashing in with his Coursers, looking to jump back up to 9. Caleb blocked with his 1/2 Hoplite and cast Gods Willing to give it protection from green, preventing 2 of the damage. Ryan climbed to 7, but the first Favored Hoplite was threatening to attack for 6 on board, and a Defiant Strike off the top for Caleb made it a lethal swing.
Caleb Scherer 1, Ryan Fleischer 0
Ryan opened up the game with a Thoughtseize, seeing Battlewise Hoplite, Feat of Resistance, Hero of Iroas, and four lands in Caleb’s hand. He got rid of the Feat of Resistance, while Caleb quickly untapped and got his Hero of Iroas into play. A second Thoughtseize from Ryan cleared out a freshly drawn Ordeal of Thassa, but he took 2 from the Hero and a Heliod’s Pilgrim off the top for Caleb retrieved an Ordeal of Thassa anyway.
Ryan played his third land and passed the turn with an Abzan Charm at the ready. Caleb stuck the Ordeal of Thassa onto his Hero if Iroas, and Ryan went for the removal spell after the heroic trigger. Caleb showed him his card drawn for the turn: Gods Willing, which kept the Hero alive an allowed the Ordeal of Thassa to trigger. He swung in for 9, and Ryan just shrugged and picked up his cards.
Caleb Scherer 2, Ryan Fleischer 0
Ryan had the first play of the game, a turn 2 Satyr Wayfinder which found a Temple of Silence. Caleb had the option of a turn 2 Battlewise Hoplite, but he declined, choosing to hold off until he could protect it with a Gods Willing. Ryan played his Temple and added a Sylvan Caryatid to the board, and then the Battlewise Hoplite entered play with a Temple of Enlightenment still untapped. Sure enough, Ryan went for Glare of Heresy, and Caleb use Gods Willing in an attempt to give it protection from white. Ryan had Hero’s Downfall in response, and the Hoplite went to the bin.
Undeterred, Caleb re-developed his board with a Favored Hoplite and a Heliod’s Pilgrim fetching Ordeal of Thassa. Ryan took the opportunity while Caleb was tapped out to Murderous Cut the Hoplite, leaving Caleb just the 1/2 Pilgrim to suit up with his Ordeal. He did just that, attacking for 2, and Ryan pushed his Satyr Wayfinder in front to chump block. A second Heliod’s Pilgrim fetching a second Ordeal of Thassa came post-combat.
Ryan drew and passed, appearing to be out of gas, and Caleb put the Ordeal on the second Heliod’s Pilgrim and attacked with both. Ryan blocked the 2/3 with his Sylvan Caryatid, drawing a Defiant Strike from Caleb to make it a 3/3. Ryan had Abzan Charm to kill the other Pilgrim, a 3/4, but was left without a board in the aftermath. He had no play once again on his own turn, and Caleb swung in getting the second counter on his Pilgrim, and cast a post-combat Battlewise Hoplite.
Aqueous Form made the 3/3 Battlewise Hoplite unblockable on Caleb’s next turn, and the Pilgrim cracked in without contest and triggered the Ordeal of Thassa, netting Caleb some fresh cards. Another Heliod’s Pilgrim came down for Caleb retrieving Stratus Walk, and Ryan could see the writing on the wall. He sat at 9 life with nothing but lands in play, and he played another land and passed the turn. Caleb applied some additional pants to his Battlewise Hoplite and attacked for 9, closing out the match.
Caleb Scherer 3, Ryan Fleischer 0