Quarterfinals: Steven Jack vs. Dave Shiels
Steven Jack has marched through the swiss with his See the Unwritten-based G/B Devotion deck, while Dave Shiels took Mantis+Rider and co. to the elimination rounds. Which of these emerging format staples would earn a semifinal berth?
Both players were content to develop their manabases for the first few turns, and it was Steven, on the play, who first broke the silence with a turn 3 Courser+of+Kruphix. Dave fired right back with a turn 3 Mantis+Rider, swinging for 3 in the air and dropping Steven to 17. Steven added a Sylvan Caraytid to his board on his next turn and passed with an Arbor+Colossus looming on the top of his library. Dave cleared away the Courser+of+Kruphix with some crafty sequencing—he played Goblin+Rabblemaster, went to combat to make a token, then tapped his three creatures and his remaining land to cast Stoke+the+Flames.
After some calculating, Steven decided the coast wasn’t clear to cast his Arbor+Colossus, and went with Eidolon+of+Blossoms instead. He drew his card and passed, and was forced to push the Eidolon in front of Goblin+Rabblemaster when Dave untapped, cast Stormbreath+Dragon, and shoved his board into the red zone. He fell to 8 and had no recourse but to tap out for his Arbor+Colossus. Dave simply showed him another Mantis+Rider and attacked with everything again, presenting enough damage to attack for the win even through the 6/6 reach blocker.
Dave Shiels 1, Steven Jack 0
Again it was Steven with the first play of the game, a turn 3 Voyaging+Satyr, and once again Dave had a turn 3 Mantis+Rider to bring the aggression immediately. Polukranos, World eater was the turn 4 follow-up for Steven, and after taking another 3-point hit from Dave’s Mantis+Rider he was in the clear to swing back with it. He cast Eidolon+of+Blossoms and Sylvan+Caryatid after combat and passed with a significant board advantage.
Dave had an End+Hostilities in his hand, but opted not to play it, simply dropping Steven down to 9 with his Mantis+Rider and passing the turn back. He took another swing from Polukranos, falling to 8, and had Disdainful+Stroke at the ready when Jack attempted a Hornet+Queen. He used Jeskai+Charm at Jack’s end step to drop him to 5, then untapped and showed Stoke+the+Flames to seal the deal.
Dave Shiels 2, Steven Jack 0