Round 7: Caleb Durward vs. Jeff Rasmussen
Caleb sculpts his game against the Mongoose.
Jeff had the play for the first game, and Caleb dropped to six cards in search of a better hand—he found one. Jeff fetched on turn 1 for Volcanic Island, while Caleb played Tropical Island to Green Sun’s Zenith for Dryad Arbor, dodging the represented Stifle from Jeff. Jeff cast Forked Bolt on turn 2 as a semi-Wasteland, then played a real one to clear Tropical Island. Caleb played Island and passed.
Tarmogoyf for Jeff on turn 2 thanks to Tropical, already pretty beefy at 3/4. Caleb fetched on turn 3 for Tropical Island, then cast Birds of Paradise with one up. Each of his plays so far had neatly danced around Stifle and Daze when Caleb could, and he seemed sure of the Stifle at least. When Jeff tried to Brainstorm, Caleb’s Spell Pierce kept him off that. Wasteland afterwards, rather sheepishly, destroyed the Tropical Island, and Jeff passed.
Now Caleb tried to stick Counterbalance without an additional land—he just had to risk the Daze at this point. No Daze, but Force of Will from Jeff removed Stifle. Tarmogoyf swung again, leaving Caleb on 9 life with the Goyf now a 5/6. Lotus Petal and a second Counterbalance earned Spell Snare—Caleb was in trouble.
On 4 life after Jeff attacked and passed, he cast Phantasmal Image and passed. Jeff fetched with Misty Rainforest during the end step, looking for a bun spell—he only found Nimble Mongoose. Caleb broke his Lotus Petal for Trinket Mage, searching up Nihil Spellbomb to try and shrink down Jeff’s team.
Jeff cast Delver and passed the turn, Caleb now using Nihil Spellbomb on Jeff to draw a card and make the Mongoose a 1/1. No land for Caleb, still on island and Birds with the Image and Trinket Mage defending. Jeff’s Delver revealed Daze and flipped, resuming Caleb’s defensive measure, and Caleb conceded on the next turn.
Jeff 1, Caleb 0
Jeff moved aggressively against Caleb's slow starts.
The ol’ double Wasteland rope-a-dope is one of the reasons RUG remains so threatening in Legacy, as Caleb has made others acutely aware of in recent major events. Caleb began the second game with Misty for Forest and Birds of Paradise. Just Volcanic Island and Delver of Secrets on Jeff’s side—not bad, either.
Turn 2 Kitchen Finks for Caleb met Daze, with Delver revealing Spell Pierce shortly after. Pondering, Jeff kept the top three and ended the turn. Caleb cast Diabolic Edict after dropping Island, and passed right back. Jeff played Scalding Tarn but had nothing else, out of threats. He paused to read Caleb’s Wickerbough Elder, Brainstorming then breaking his Tarn for Tropical Island. Jeff Bolted the Elder then cast Nimble Mongoose, six cards in his graveyard.
Casting Sword of Feast and Famine, Caleb passed the turn with Island untapped. Spell Pierce on Ponder when Jeff cast it resolved, countering the cantrip as Jeff sat with Volcanic Island untapped and holding his own Spell Pierce.
Submerge fended off the Sword of Feast and Famine Caleb attempted, and he was again falling behind against Mongooses when Jeff Spell Pierced his Brainstorm. Jeff attacked him to 10 and cast another copy of the 3/3 untargetable, passing back to Caleb. Replaying the Birds and giving it Sword, he passed. Tarmogoyf for Jeff was a 4/5, and Jeff squeezed 3 damage past the Birds.
Top from Caleb spun him to a card worth popping for, and he played Island before casting Nihil Spellbomb with Bayou untapped. He removed the graveyard from the game and then attacked with his Birds, forcing Jeff to pitch Snapcaster Mage. Recasting his Top, Caleb spun it and then submerged Tarmogoyf during the upkeep with two mana up.
That resolved, and Jeff attacked for 2 with his Nimbles before replaying the Tarmogoyf. Caleb cast Snapcaster Mage after drawing to get Diabolic Edict, killing one Mongoose before getting in another thunk with Birds, pitching Jeff’s Snare. Caleb carefully considered whether he could afford to shift Sword—he’d be dead to Submerge if he did so, but Jeff only had one card in his hand.
He eventually decided to do it, and Submerge won Jeff the game.
Jeff 2, Caleb 0