Quarterfinals: Joe Lossett vs. Logan Mize
These two players are fresh off of an appearance in the 2014 Players’ Championship, and they’re starting off the new year with a strong bid to return. Which player would triumph in the Heroic vs. Heroic slug-out?
Joe led off with a Temple of Enlightenment, giving Logan the first opportunity to get a Hero on the battlefield, sticking Favored Hoplite on his first turn. A Battlewise Hoplite on turn 2 from Joe evened up the board, but Logan drew first blood by sending his Favored Hoplite to skies with a Stratus Walk, dropping Joe to 18. Joe cracked back for 4 on his turn using Ordeal of Thassa to grow his Battlewise Hoplite twice. Logan had Defiant Strike to send back another 4 damage in the air, and added a Battlewise Hoplite to his own side, hoping to race.
He declined to chump block when Joe cracked in with a 5/5 Battlewise Hoplite, cashing in his Ordeal of Thassa for two fresh cards. Joe added Seeker of the Way to the battlefield and passed with two mana open. Logan spent a moment in the tank before attacking with only the 3/4 flying Favored Hoplite, dropping Joe to 10, then casting another Battlewise Hoplite and another Favored Hoplite, and shipping back.
Joe came swinging with a 5/5 Battlewise Hoplite and a Seeker of the Way. Logan blocked each, chumping the 5/5 with his Battlewise Hoplite and putting his Favored Hoplite in front of the Seeker. Logan used Defiant Strike after blockers to pump up his Favored Hoplite, eating the seeker, and avoided taking any damage. Joe simply replaced the Seeker with another one from his hand and ended the turn. Logan untapped and tried for an Aqueous Form on his Battlewise Hoplite, but Joe shut it down with a Stubborn Denial, allowing him to continue holding the ground. He took 3 in the air, falling to 7, and Logan added Hero of Iroas to the board before ending his turn.
Being careful to avoid a misstep in a tight race, Joe cast Heliod’s Pilgrim to retrieve an Aqueous Form, putting it on his Battlewise Hoplite and attacking with both it and the Seeker of the Way. Logan blocked the Seeker with his Favored Hoplite, then used Ajani’s Presence on it in a bid to prevent Joe from gaining life from his Seeker. He needed to use his Mana Confluence to do so, however, falling to 8, and Joe had Defiant Strike to bring the unblockable Battlewise Hoplite up to 8/7, sealing the deal.
Joe Lossett 1, Logan Mize 0
This time it was Joe who opened up with Favored hoplite on the draw, and Logan who got himself established on turn 2 with a Battlewise Hoplite. Joe had Defiant Strike to crack for 3, but no follow-up, while Logan put Aqueous Form on his Hoplite and swung for 3 right back. Joe exploded on turn 3, casting Hero of Iroas to enable a Ordeal of Thassa for just one mana, which beefed his Favored Hoplite up to 4/5 and gave him two new cards. Logan cycled Defiant Strike on his end step, then found an Ordeal of his own, growing the Battlewise Hoplite to 6/6 and jumping up to 25.
At 9 life and facing down a 6/6 threat, Joe needed a solution, and he found one off the top of his deck: a Glare of Heresy. Logan had bad news for him, protecting the Battlewise Hoplite with Gods Willing. Joe got off another Ordeal of Thassa on his attack step, dropping Logan down to 17, and had Tranquil Cove to give himself a life. It might have made the difference, as Logan was unable to finish the game with his unblockable 7/7, only attacking Joe down to 3, casting a Hero of Iroas, and passing back.
Joe used Gods Willing in his upkeep to give Favored Hoplite (now a 7/8!) Protection from Blue, and in the process found another Glare of Heresy, which successfully cleared away Logan’s 7/7. He dropped Logan to 10 with his Favored Hoplite and passed with Hero of Iroas back to trade with, or at least chump block, Logan’s own hero.
Joe Lossett 1, Logan Mize 1
Battlewise Hoplite led the charge for Joe in the decider, While Logan had Temple of Enlightenment on turn 1, then a Favored Hoplite but no second land drop on his next turn. Joe cracked in for 2 and added Hero of Iroas to his board, while Logan took his draw step and had the bad news, moving to his clean-up step and discarding his 8th card. Joe cast Ordeal of Heliod on his Battlewise Hoplite, attacked with it to bring Logan down to 14, then cast a second Hero of Iroas.
Logan still had no land drop, but did find a second Favored Hoplite. Joe turned up the pressure with an Ordeal of Heliod on his Battlewise Hoplite, then attacked and triggered both Ordeals, dropping Logan to 5. He cast Seeker of the Way post-combat and passed back to Logan. Logan triumphantly flipped a Plains off the top of his deck, and cast Glare of Heresy to get rid of the colossal Battlewise Hoplite, but the damage was done. Joe showed him Glare of Heresy to clear away a blocker, and Logan extended the hand.
Joe Lossett 2, Logan Mize 1