Round 12: Matt Nass vs. Henry Freedman
Matt Nass, purveyor of wacky hijinks.
Henry had the first play of the game, a turn 2 Commune with the Gods, which netted him a Courser of Kruphix and left some other goodies, including a Siege Rhino, in his graveyard. Matt had the Sylvan Caryatid on his second turn, while Henry was quick to get on the board with a turn 3 Courser. Matt revealed what shenanigans he had in store on turn 3, when he cast Dragon Mantle on his Sylvan Caryatid, then drew and cast Jeskai Ascendancy.
Fortunately for Henry, he had Reclamation Sage at the ready, which destroyed the Jeskai Ascendancy before Matt could trigger it. Matt played a Karametra’s Favor on his Sylvan Caryatid, making it a redundant mana producer, but found no other action and passed back. Henry came crashing in with his two creatuers, and Matt thought for a moment before deciding not to block, playing around a potential post-combat Doomwake Giant. He fell to 12, and Henry followed up with a post-combat Whip of Erebos.
Matt had no play other than a land on his next turn, and shipped it back. Siege Rhino came rumbling out of Henry’s graveyard, and this time Matt had to block. He blocked the Reclamation Sage but fell to 3. He took his draw step, still found himself without the Jeskai Ascendancy he would need to get his engine started, and shrugged and passed the turn back. Henry turned all of his attackers sideways, and Matt picked up his cards.
Henry Freedman 1, Matt Nass 0
Henry Freedman keeps calm and Rhinos on.
Matt had the slightly confused opener of “turn 1 tapland, turn 2 tapland Akroan Crusader” to start things off on game 2, and he got a mana source out of his Crusader on his next turn with a Karametra’s Favor. Henry had a turn 2 Sylvan Caryatid, then another Caryatid on his next turn followed up by a Thoughtseize. Matt revealed down Melatis Astronomer, Akroan Crusader, Gods Willing, and a pair of Dragon Mantles, and Henry tanked for a moment before sniping the Astronomer. Matt began spitting out 1/1s on his turn, as he cast another Akroan Crusader, put a Dragon Mantle on his first, then added Karametra’s Favor to one of his tokens.
Henry didn’t have the dreaded Doomwake Giant on his own turn, but he did Thoughtseize again to get rid of Matt’s freshly drawn Retraction Helix, and then cast a Siege Rhino to fortify his position. Matt was unfazed, and he Dragon Manted his other Akroan Crusader and sent in with the team. Siege Rhino blocked one token, and Henry fell to 19. Matt had Meletis Astronomer as a follow up, threatening to start generating cards. Henry cast Commune with the Gods, finding a Siege Rhino, and shipped back.
When the Crusaders and tokens came swinging again, Henry pushed his Siege Rhino in front of a Crusader again. Matt pumped it up to 5/1, Henry targeted it with Murderous Cut, and Matt tried to protect it with Gods Willing. Henry was ready with the second Murderous Cut, and he kept his Siege Rhino alive, although he fell to 17 from the other attackers. He wasted no time untapping and adding a second Siege Rhino to the board. It blocked the and traded with the Mantled Crusader on Matt’s next attack, but Matt was again out of gas, and he could only pass back to Henry as he took the offensive with his Siege Rhino.
Matt fell to 7, and then to 3. On Henry’s next attack, Matt had exactly five power’s worth of blockers, and he thought for a moment before shoving them all in front of the Siege Rhino. Henry had Utter End for the Meletis Astronomer, which let him keep his Rhino while sweeping away all of Matt’s tokens. Now without a board and facing down an angry Rhinoceros, Matt peeked at his top card and extended the hand.
Henry Freedman 2, Matt Nass 0