Quarterfinals: Kurt Spiess vs. Travis Cowley
Kurt Spiess came into the Top 8 as the No. 3 seed with Lands while No. 6 seed Travis Cowley brought Death and Taxes to the table. Would the little white creatures power their way into the semifinals or would Spiess’ prison-style Lands deck get there?
For Kurt Spiess, it's good to have land...
Spiess started with an Exploration off a Grove of the Burnwillows and played a Thespian Stage. Cowley played his marquee one-drop, Aether Vial. Spiess played two more lands, this time Wasteland and Dark Depths, while Cowley put a counter on his Vial. Cowley played another Vial this time off a Cavern of Souls on human. Spiess made his Stage a Grove and cycled Tranquil Thicket and played another Grove and a Maze of Ith while Cowley ticked up his Vials. Cowley dropped a Rishadan Port and Vialed a Thalia, Guardian of Thraben into play and passed as Spiess copied Cowley’s Port with his Stage.
Spiess destroyed the Port with Wasteland and played The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale. Cowley attacked for two and passed. Spiess cast Gamble and discarded Manabond. Cowley’s attack was prevented via Maze of Ith and he passed. Spiess cast Life from the Loam getting back Wasteland and destroyed Karakas. Cowley used his Wasteland to destroy Maze, got in for two and passed, while Spiess cycled Tranquil Thicket and continued his Loam/Wasteland combo. Loam brought back Thicket, Wasteland and Maze of Ith. Wasteland blew up Cavern of Souls before passing.
The mid game entered a state of Loam, Port, Wasteland lockout until Spiess used Dark Depths and Thespian Stage to make a Merit Lage that got Flickerwisped away from a Vial. Spiess made another 20/20 at the end of Cowley’s next turn. Spiess untapped and killed Flickerwisp with Punishing Fire and swung in for 20. Cowley vialed in a Stoneforge Mystic at end of turn grabbing a Jitte. Cowley used the Mystic to put a Batterskull into play, but once Spiess got double Punishing Fire going Cowley packed it in as the two went to their sideboards.
Spiess 1, Cowley 0
Travis Cowley finds a way to get his white creatures through many Mazes of Ith.
Cowley started with Port into Relic of Progenitus and Spiess played a Mox Diamond and fetched a Taiga off a Wooded Foothills then cast Crop Rotation sacrificing the dual land for a Thespian Stage. Spiess then cast Loam to bring his two lands back. Cowley played a Mother of Runes off a Horizon Canopy. Spiess dredged back Life From the Loam then cast Loam targeting Grove of the Burnwillows. Cowley played a Mirran Crusader and attacked for 1. Spiess dredged back Loam and cast Loam on Glacial Chasm and played a Manabond then played Chasm and Dark Depths. Cowley attacked, but the damage was prevented from the land then Cowley used Wasteland on Dark Depths. Cowley removed Spiess’ graveyard from the game with Relic and drew a card.
Spiess emptied his hand by playing an Exploration before passing. Cowley added a Serra Avenger. Spiess paid the upkeep on Chasm and passed. Cowley scarified his Horizon Canopy for a card. Spiess made another Maze of Ith from his Stage at end of turn then decided to not pay the upkeep on his Chasm. Spiess destroyed the Port with a Wasteland and passed. Cowley attacked Spiess down to 9 through tapping a Maze and having Crusader get Mazed. Spiess drew and passed. Cowley and Spiess did the same process with attacks and Spiess fell to 4. Same attacks same Maze fun after Spiess passed, but Spiess used Punshing Fire on Mother of Runes and fell to 1. Spiess brought pack Fire and killed off the other Mother before passing. Cowley used a Flickerwisp at end of turn to blink a Maze, untapped, Ported a Maze then Vialed in another Flickerwisp to blink out the third and final Maze to attack in for the win.
Spiess 1, Cowley 1
Spiess shuffles up for Game 3.
Spiess led with Taiga to cycle Tranquil Thicket and passed. Cowley led with Relic and removed the Thicket. Spiess played Mox Diamond discarding Thicket then played a Port and Exploration. Cowley played a Mother of Runes after having his first Plains tapped down. Spiess dropped a Thespian Stage and passed. Cowley played a Thalia and Spiess responded with Crop Rotation for Dark Depths, then at end of turn copied it with Thespian Stage. With Cowley tapped out Spiess sent in the 20/20 for the win.
Spiess 2, Cowley 1