Quarterfinals: Steven Duran vs. Adam Minniear
This matchup might well be titled ‘The Quick and The Dead’: Bant Hexproof, featuring Ajani%2C+Caller+of+the+Pride, and B/G Zombies. But we shall see who is really the dead one after this match!
Adam's hoping for a night of the living dead!
Steven, as the top overall seed, had the play and the crucial leg-up on this speed vs. speed aggressive matchup. Both players kept, and the match was underway with Steven’s first play of Breeding+Pool tapped, followed by Deathrite+Shaman from Adam. Invisible+Stalker hit the board for Steven next, and after a quick peck from Deathrite Adam cast Sign+in+Blood targeting himself. Steven took three damage to cast both Ethereal+Armor and Spectral+Flight on his Stalker before attacking for 5, dropping Adam to 13.
Cavern+of+Souls naming Zombies allowed Dreg+Mangler to enter play and Steven fell to 13… until Unflinching+Courage took over and put the game well out of reach. The Stalker hit as an 8/8, flying, first striking, unblockable, hexproof, trample, Lifelink beater. Did I miss any keywords? Nope, but those stats made life difficult for Adam, and after drawing one more card to look for outs he scooped.
Both players started Game 2 with a mulligan… to five! Once play got started, Adam led off with Overgrown+Tomb and Steven led with Sunpetal+Grove. Lotleth+Troll came down for Adam, while Steven only had another fake Selesnya+Guildgate in Sunpetal+Grove. Adam had Deathrite+Shaman postcombat on turn three, while Voice+of+Resurgence came into play for Steven.
Steven's Bant Pants have served him well!
The Lotleth+Troll continued unimpeded, and afterwards the Voice became a Victim+of+Night. Breeding+Pool off the top allowed Invisible+Stalker to enter play though, so 2/2 Elemental token rumbled for Steven. At end of turn, Deathrite+Shaman deals two more to Steven, who was now at 10. He fell to 8 after an attack from the Troll, but Adam had no further follow up. The Stalker became a 5/3 with trample and flying thanks to Rancor and Spectral+Flight the next turn, and Steven got his beats on.
After Adam gained two by removing Voice from Steven’s graveyard, Diregraf+Ghoul also joined the party. Adam dropped to 7 after taking two damage from his Breeding+Pool, and Adam dropped to 5 after Stalker attacked. Both the Ghoul and the Troll entered the red zone for Adam, but Advent+of+the+Wurm threatened to throw a big trampling wrench in the works. Wurm blocked Troll, and Steven fell to 5. Steven dropped another Invisible+Stalker before combat, and 4/4 Elemental, 5/5 Wurm, and 5/3 Invisible+Stalker with many keywords put an end to Adam’s top 8 run.
Well, we did say it would be quick!
Steven 2, Adam 0