Round 8: Gerry Thompson vs. Daniel Battle
Gerry Thompson entered the Standard portion on undefeated and has only dropped one round since then, piloting his tried-and-true UWR deck. Standing in the way of a 7-1 start to the Invitational was Daniel Battle, seeking the same.
Gerry sends his Boros Reckoners into the red zone.
Daniel quickly mulliganed his opener, while Gerry announced a keep. Those six sent Daniel back into the deck looking for a healthy five cards, which he found—Sunpetal Grove started the game. Gerry fired Steam Vents tapped, while Daniel had Hinterland Harbor. Gerry’s turn 2 Augur of Bolas missed as Daniel continued to lay M10 duals, and he added to his offense with Boros Reckoner.
When Daniel tried to block with Restoration Angel, Azorius Charm stacked it on top of the deck, leaving Daniel to repeat his previous turn. When Gerry attacked this time, Daniel didn’t try to block—he took his 4 damage and flashed down Angel in the end step, after Gerry cast a second Reckoner.
Thought Scour on Gerry milled Think Twice, and when he attacked this time a second Angel joined the first. Gerry allowed them to block and then Snapcaster Maged Azorius Charm onto one Angel, trading with the other. Daniel took advantage of Gerry tapping low to immediately recast his Angel, passing the turn.
Pulling ahead on cards and life, Gerry flashbacked Think Twice prior to attacking and had Azorius Charm one more time after forcing through 3 damage, putting Daniel on 10 life. Gerry Thought Scoured himself again, then cast Pillar of Flame on Danel prior to firing Harvest Pyre at his own Boros Reckoner for the kill.
Daniel's Angels jumped to his defense too late in each game.
Gerry 1, Daniel 0
“That’s okay, I lost game 1 to UWR last round too,” Daniel said, looking for a repeat to end the day. Daniel had a laugh over his “powerful Guildgate manabase” as he shuffled up for game 2, and this time found seven cards to his liking. Temple Garden against Steam Vents and each player just making land drops until Daniel got to the board with a turn 3 Loxodon Smiter.
Cycling Azorius Charm, Gerry played Steam Vents and passed, prepared to take 4 damage. Daniel was wary of Charm and paid 2 life for a Temple Garden, representing Restoration Angel as he knocked Gerry to 16. Sure enough, the Angel came down in Gerry’s end step after he played his fourth land, but Gerry had Searing Spear and Electrickery to take down Smiter.
Daniel swung for 3 damage and cast Avacyn’s Pilgrim, lacking a fifth land. Gerry didn’t appear to have the goods to punish him, just playing a tapped shockland on turn 5 while on 13 life. He did have an Angel to block when Daniel attacked, but the Prime Speaker Zegana that Daniel’s topdecked land allowed him to resolve put him in the driver’s seat. Drawing four cards, he passed.
Gerry played Boros Reckoner and ended the turn, hurting for some relevant spells—a revelation perhaps. Daniel wasn’t hurting for much, with a full hand and plenty of lands now. He took 2 for a shockland and cast Acidic Slime to destroy Glacial Fortress, prompting Gerry to give his Reckoner first strike. Farseek followed, and Daniel passed—he didn’t need to attack in order to break this game open, as his cards in hand would do that for him.
Representing Supreme Verdict, Gerry attacked with Reckoenr and Restoration Angel—but his actual trick was Electrickery, which would let him eat almost all of Daniel’s blocks. Daniel dropped Acidic Slime and Zegana in front of Reckoner and Angel onto Angel—Gerry let damage resolve to send 6 at Daniel’s dome prior to casting Electrickery to clear out Pilgrim, Zegana, and Angel.
While Gerry had another Reckoner, Daniel upped the ante with Angel of Serenity to exile Gerry’s Reckoner and Angel while grabbing an Angel of his own from the bin. Gerry took 2 from a shockland, going to 9 for Sphinx’s Revelation to leave him at 13, drawing four cards. He fell to 6 life on Daniel’s attack, and Jace, Memory Adept began drawing Daniel even more cards.
Gerry had weapons of his own now, though. He cast Supreme Verdict to reclaim his creatures and debated his next move, on a scant 6 life against an incoming Restoration Angel. He decided to take 2 for a shockland and pass, leaving him capable of his own Angel. Daniel resolved his and Gerry shrugged—he was hoping that if Daniel did have a counter, his Angel would bait it out. That would leave Daniel vulnerable to the Reckoner he’d retrieved and the Harvest Pyre already in his hand.
Daniel drew with Jace before making a decision, landing on Thragtusk. Gerry nodded, Daniel going to 15, and then Gerry blocked it up with his Angel when Daniel attacked with his own. Drawing a card, Gerry attacked Daniel for 3 damage—no blocks or effects took Daniel down to 12. Gerry cast Boros Reckoner afterward, and passed the turn against Daniel’s four remaining mana.
Gerry 2, Daniel 0