Semifinals: Gerry Thompson (U/W Delver) vs. Michael Hetrick (RUG Pod)
Michael played Birds of Paradise off Copperline Gorge, while Gerry Gitaxian Probed to see three Forest, Phyrexian Metamorph, and Strangleroot Geist; Gut Shot took care of the Birds, and Strangleroot Geist came down to attack Gerry for two, putting him to 16.
The Metamorph copied Strangleroot Geist, and Gerry took it, going to 10. He then passed with two lands and Moorland Haunt. Michael used Green Sun's Zenith to find another Strangleroot Geist, and everyone entered the red zone.
"Come onnn, Sever," Gerry said.
He blocked the Phyrexian Metamorph with Snapcaster Mage and Vapor Snagged a Strangleroot Geist, going to 8. Dismember took out the undead Metamorph, and Gerry passed after playing a tapped Seachrome Coast.
Michael cast his second Strangleroot Geist again and resolved Birthing Pod…Gerry knew he was drawing dead.
Michael 1, Gerry 0
"I'm down," Gerry said to a questioning Josh Ravitz, "but not out!"
Gerry's first Gitaxian Probe made Michael lay out Kessig Wolf Run, 2 Forest, Deceiver Exarch, Birds of Paradise, and Crushing Vines. He then Pondered off Island, and Michael responded with Birds of Paradise off his Forest. Gitaxian Probe was recast with Snapcaster Mage, revealing Huntmaster of the Fells.
Unable to attack, Gerry passed as well, and Michael found a Mountain with Borderland Ranger. Restoration Angel flashed in, targeting Snapcaster Mage, and Michael used Crushing Vines in response to take it out.
Gerry's Delver remained unflipped, so he just made a second. Gut Shot then took out Michael's Birds of Paradise. Michael used Phantasmal Image to copy Borderland Ranger, fetching an Island. Strangleroot Geist from Michael then came in for two, taking Gerry to 10.
Michael summoned Huntmaster of the Fells to gain two life and used a Crushing Vines on an Insectile Aberration. The board state now was Gerry's Snapcaster Mage, Hero of Bladehold, and Insectile Aberration facing Michael's two Borderland Rangers, Strangleroot Geist, Deceiver Exarch, Huntmaster of the Fells, and its Wolf token.
Geist of Saint Traft floated into the battlefield, and Gerry held back his team. Michael cast his second Huntmaster for an even more sizeable army, and he went up to 18. With three mana left, Michael sent in a Birds of Paradise—only for it to be sent away with a Mana Leak, which wasn't doing much otherwise.
Everything attacks...everything blocks.
Gerry blocked the two Huntmasters, a 2/2 Wolf, and a Borderland Ranger. He let through the other Wolf, Strangleroot Geist, and Deceiver Exarch; Michael activated Kessig Wolf Run, targeting Huntmaster to kill the Hero of Bladehold blocking it.
"Deal," Gerry said, nodding, and he was left with nothing but 3 life and lands. His hand had nothing more to show, however, and it was onto the third game.
Michael 2, Gerry 0
"I missed a few attacks," Michael admitted. Fortunately for him, it didn’t much matter with an army of that magnitude. Delver doesn't like trying to come back from behind. Right now Michael was looking at a chance to take the semifinals in a quick three games…could Gerry battle back?
"Me first," Gerry said, drawing his seven. Michael had to take a mulligan, and Gerry Pondered as his first play. Michael matched with Birds of Paradise, but Gerry had the fast Gut Shot. He then Mana Leaked when Michael tried to play Strangleroot Geist. Gerry Pondered on his turn 3 and then cast Delver of Secrets.
Llanowar Elves from Michael made it onto the battlefield.
Gerry then flipped his Delver with a topdecked Vapor Snag, swung for three, and cast Hero of Bladehold using Cavern of Souls on Human. His plan was laid out before him with the previous Ponder, and he didn't need to think.
On upkeep, Michael used Deceiver Exarch to tap Hero of Bladehold for a turn, and Michael took three to go to 14. Daybreak Ranger was Michael's next play, and Gerry used Dismember on the Exarch and Vapor Snag on the Daybreak Ranger—Gerry didn't even need to swing for Michael to scoop them up.
Gerry 1, Michael 2
Michael would take the play this time, with a Copperline Gorge to start. Gerry Gitaxian Probed to see Copperline Gorge, Strangleroot Geist, Hinterland Harbor, Daybreak Ranger, Forest, and Birthing Pod. He then Pondered to finish his turn. Michael shot back with a turn-two Strangleroot Geist, putting Gerry to 16.
Snapcaster Mage brought back Probe, showing Zealous Conscripts as Michael's draw. The Strangleroot Geist ran into Snapcaster Mage, turning into a 3/2 upon rebirth. Michael then played Daybreak Ranger. Gerry's third land led to Geist of Saint Traft. Michael swung in with his Strangleroot Geist, taking Gerry to 11, and Birthing Pod switched out Daybreak Ranger for Huntmaster of the Fells. Michael went to 18 after all was said and done.
Michael 3, Gerry 1