Quarterfinals: Christopher Wessel vs. Brad Rutherford
Both players brought powerful combo decks to the table, but Brad Rutherford was looking for revenge, as Christopher Wessel and his Elf Combo deck had defeated his Sneak and Show deck in the Swiss.
Christopher had a pretty good turn 2.
Christopher kicked things off with a Green Sun’s Zenith for 0, fetching up Dryad Arbor. Brad took a peek at Christopher’s hand on his turn with Gitaxian Probe, seeing a potentially explosive grip of Glimpse of Nature, Heritage Druid, Nettle Sentinel, Wirewood Symbiot, and Gaea’s Cradle. He then cast Faithless Looting, drew and discarded two lands, then cycled through two more Gitaxian Probes before passing the turn. He was digging for a Force of Will, but he didn’t find one, and he could only hope that Christopher fizzled.
After using the Dryad Arbor to cast Glimpse of Nature, Christopher sent his deck into overdrive. He used Gaea’s Cradle to cast Nettle Sentinel, Heritage Druid, and Quirion Ranger, then used the Heritage Druid to begin casting more and more elves. The Wirewood Symbiote was joined by an Elvish Visionary to keep the gas flowing, and slowly Christopher’s elfin army grew. After playing about twelve elves (and drawing twelve more cards) he cast Natural Order for Craterhoof Behemoth and swung across for the turn 2 kill.
Christopher Wessel 1, Brad Rutherford 0
Brad looks at seven new cards thanks to Griselbrand.
After Brad played a Scalding Tarn and passed, Christopher fired off with a Cabal Therapy. Brad Brainstormed in response to tuck a card on top of his library, and Christopher named Show and Tell. He missed, but saw a hand of Griselbrand, Force of Will, Emrakul, the Aeons Torn, Lotus Petal, Volcanic Island, and Ancient Tomb. He passed the turn, and Brad simply put the Sneak Attack from on top into play, using Ancient Tomb and Lotus Petal.
Christopher had a second copy of Cabal Therapy, and a Heritage Druid to sacrifice, so he got to snipe both of the giant monsters out of Brad’s hand. Brad topdecked a Ponder and went digging. He didn’t find a replacement creature, but he did find a Grafdigger’s Cage. Christopher simply played out two of his many dorks, a Deathrite Shaman and a Wirewood Symbiote.
Christopher Wessel 1, Brad Rutherford 1
Christopher had a Deathrite Shaman to start the game off, and Brad simply played a Volcanic Island and a Lotus Petal and passed. Elvish Visionary came next for Christopher, along with a Green Sun’s Zenith for 0 to fetch up Dryad Arbor and develop his mana further. Brad’s only play was a Pithing Needle, naming Wirewood Symbiote to shut down any Elvish Visionary shenanigans. When Christopher went for a Glimpse of Nature, Brad showed him Force of Will. He played out a Quirion Ranger, and passed.
Brad drew a clutch Pyroclasm, casting it off of his Lotus Petal and cleaning up Christopher’s board, on his next turn he found City of Traitors to allow him to cast Show and Tell, putting a Griselbrand into play. Christopher took the opportunity to put his Craterhoof Behemoth into play, and Brad passed, his 7/7 lifelinking Demon on defense for the time being. Christopher could only replay his Dryad Arbor and pass back.
After confirming his life total, Brad began his turn by activating Griselbrand and drawing a fresh seven. He then cast Pyroclasm to sweep away Christopher’s elves and an Echoing Truth to return the Craterhoof Behemoth to Christopher’s hand. He attacked with his Griselbrand and passed the turn.
Christopher went for a Green Sun’s Zenith, but Brad countered it with Force of Will just to be safe. He attacked and drew a fresh seven again, and passed. Christopher had no way to survive the next Griselbrand attack, and extended the hand in defeat.
Brad Rutherford 2, Christopher Wessel 1