Round 5: Zac Hicks vs. Travis Hilderbrand
Two red decks were paired this round: Goblins and Welder! We're all familiar with the tribal deck, but Welder's got a lot of strange shenanigans, from Blood+Moon to Mindslaver to Blightsteel+Colossus!
Each player mulliganed, with Zac on the play piloting Welder. Their sixes were acceptable, Zac casting Gamble via Great+Furnace on turn 1. Randomizing his hand, he binned Blood+Moon and passed the turn. Mountain and Goblin+Lackey for Travis revealed his archetype. Zac played Darksteel+Citadel and Grim+Monolith, having nothing for the Lackeyâ€”he took 1 damage, and Goblin Warchief hit the board, followed by another Lackey and no second land.
Ancient+Tomb for Zac preceded Lightning+Greaves, and he fell to 17 for another Monolith. Travis had a lot of damageâ€”Goblin Piledriver hit the board, followed by an attack that put Goblin+Matron and Siege-Gang Commander into play.
Unsurprisingly, that did the trick.
Travis 1, Zac 0
City+of+Traitors into Grim+Monolith offered Zac the potential for a busted opening, while Travis had the same in Mountain and Aether+Vial. Of course, Batterskull changed the board significantlyâ€”Zac was way ahead off the turn 2 equipment. Travis played Badlands and another Aether+Vial, passing the turn.
Swinging for 4 damage, Zac played Darksteel+Citadel after floating mana to put Metalworker into play. The Vials all ticked up, and Travis hardcast Goblin+Piledriver. Activating Metalworker to reveal Staff of Domination, Top, Sundering+Titan, and another artifact, Zac went to infinite mana by casting the Staff, followed by drawing cards until he could setup Blightsteel+Colossus and Lightning+Greaves, tapping anything that got in his way.
Zac's artifacts are pretty incredible, if he can survive long enough to stick them.
Travis 1, Zac 1
Two very fast gamesâ€”would the third one be as quick? Zac switched up a bit of his sideboarding for the draw, and each player prepared for the game that would decide their Top 8 contention. Travis mulliganed to start, while Zac kept seven. Shipping the six back and heading to five, Travis would need a strong five.
Mountain, pass for Travis, while Zac led Furnace into Goblin Welder on turn 1. No land or Goblin during the second turn for Travis, Zac playing Ancient+Tomb and going to 18 life to cast Spellskite, attacking for 1 damage. Travis drewâ€¦ and passed.
City+of+Traitors enabled Zac to cast Kuldotha+Forgemaster, making things really dangerous. Travis made a Mountain, but had no other plays. Zac floated two and played another City, casting Steel+Hellkite and attacking for 1 with Goblin Welderâ€”Travis saw fit to concede when his next draw didn't offer him anything powerful enough to win.
Travis 1, Zac 2