Round 1: Ross Merriam vs. Dylan Donegan
The two Pod 4 players meet up in Round 1, both bringing Jeskai Tokens to the table. Will the Season Four Invitational winner or the near back-to-back Open winner start the event on the right track?
Ross raises the Alarm.
Both players opened with a Mystic Monastery, but Ross had a Turn-2 Seeker of the Way while Dylan passed after adding a second land. Ross kept up his curve with a Jeskai Ascendancy so Dylan responded with a Lightning Strike on the 2/2 in response. Dylan missed his land drop and passed while Ross passed after playing a fourth land, prompting Dylan to Raise the Alarm.
Dylan attacked with his tokens so Ross responded by Raising his own Alarm, triggering Ascendancy and blocking both while playing another copy of Raise the Alarm to keep his tokens around and looting again. After combat, Dylan played an Ascendancy of his own.
Ross didn’t respond, but he found another Strike to hit Dylan for three and Dylan picked up his cards, knowing a lethal attack was incoming.
Ross 1, Dylan 0
Both players opened with untapped lands this time and Dylan was first to the board with an end-of-turn Raise the Alarm. Dylan took 1 to play a Goblin Rabblemaster, but Ross, on a mulligan to six, killed it with a Lightning Strike before combat and fell to 16 from the tokens after fetching an Island and using his Battlefield Forge.
Ross found another Forge and went to 14 to play Hordeling Outburst, getting some tokens for himself. Dylan had the Ascendancy first this game, taking 2 to do so, and opted to not attack. Ross landed a Chandra, Pyromaster and killed off one of Dylan’s tokens and attacked for 3, dropping Dylan to 13. Dylan dropped to 12 and played a Hordeling Outburst, looting away another copy of Jeskai Ascendancy, and attacked for 2, dropping Chandra to 3 loyalty. During Ross’ upkeep, Dylan fired off a Stoke the Flames, but Ross stopped it with a Negate, as Dylan looted away a land.
Ross used the zero on Chandra, but exiled an uncastable Wingmate Roc and passed the turn. Dylan used an Arc Lightning to kill off Ross’ board and pump his team with Ascendancy. After the untap, Dylan convoked for a Stoke the Flames and Ross scooped up his board in response.
Ross 1, Dylan 1
Dylan sends his Soldiers into the red zone.
Ross led off with a Temple of Triumph and Dylan, on a mulligan to six, dropped a Plans. Both players had a play on two as Dylan deployed a Seeker of the Way and Ross Raised the Alarm. Ross decided to kill the Seeker with a Lightning Strike, attacked for 2, and played another temple. Dylan had a backup Seeker and passed after playing another Plains, missing out on blue mana.
Ross used a Glare of Hersey on the new Seeker, attacked for 2 more and played a land. Dylan bricked on his draw step and passed back as Ross added a Chandra to his board and attacked. Dylan did have a Raise the Alarm at the end step as he fell to 13. Dylan attacked Chandra to 3, but Ross untapped, killed one with the Planeswalker and attacked Dylan to 10. Ross ended his turn with a Jeskai Ascendancy and Dylan Raised the Alarm again.
Dylan knocked Chandra to 1 and passed, still lacking blue. Ross again killed a token, Raised the Alarm to pump and loot, and attacked Dylan to 5. Dylan drew and considered his options, but had to pass back. Ross used Chandra to kill off a token, played Treasure Cruise, and Dylan extended the hand.
Ross 2, Dylan 1