Semifinals: Gonzalo Velasquez vs. Phillip Fortner
Xenagos and friends were well represented in this semifinal, as both Phillip Fortner and Gonzalo Velasquez brough Jund Planeswalkers to battle.
Gonzalo has a strong board presence.
Gonzalo, on the play, curved out with a turn 1 Elvish Mystic, a turn 2 Sylvan Caryatid, and a turn 3 Nissa, Worldwaker, cranking out a 4/4 Forest. Philip needed to use a Dreadbore on the planeswalker to keep things from getting out of control, but took the beats from the 4/4 land on his next turn after he added Sylvan Caryatid to his board. Both players found Coursers of Kruphix, although Phillip didn’t get to keep his as it met a Dreadbore from Gonzalo.
Philip finally found another removal spell for the 4/4 land, but the damage was done, as he sat as a precarious 6 life. He tapped out for Xenagos, the Reveler and made a Satyr, hoping to gain a foothold, but Gonzalo showed him Rakdos’s Return, and Phillip scooped up his cards.
Gonzalo Velasquez 1, Phillip Fortner 0
Phillip looks for a way out.
Both players led off with Elvish Mystics, but Gonzalo followed up with a Duress, seeing a hand of Mizzium Mortars, Xenagos, the Reveler, and lands. He deprived Phillip of his planeswalker, then had Courser of Kruphix on his next turn. Phillip drew and cast Vraska the Unseen and used it to kill off the Courser, but Gonzalo was quick to rebuild, casting Nissa Worldwalker and untapping his Overgrown Tomb with it to cast another Duress, sniping Phillip’s freshly drawn Rakdos’s Return and leaving him with just a Mizzium Mortars.
Phillip ticked up his Vraska, hoping to kill off the Nissa on his next turn, but Gonzalo had Hero’s Downfall to put the stop on that plan. Gonzalo swung with a 4/4 land to drop Phillip to 11, but Phillip was able to clear Gonzalo’s board with Dreadbore on the Nissa and Mizzium Mortars on the 4/4. Gonzalo found a Courser of Kruphix next, and both players drew and played lands without a play for the next few turns, although Gonzalo got to dig a little bit deeper thanks to his Courser.
The Courser of Kruphix dropped Phillip all the way down to 1, but Vraska the Unseen looked like it would let Phillip stabilize, as he killed off Gonzalo’s attacker then followed up with a Xenagos, the Reveler to make some headway. Gonzalo found a replacement Courser, then a Xenagos of his own, which put Phillip under serious pressure. He drew a Sylvan Caratid, which combined with the 2/2 Satyr each turn from Xenagos was able to keep things at parity against Gonzalo’s pair of 2 powered attackers.
Gonzalo drew and cast a mighty Elvish Mystic! With Phillip at just 1 life, the extra attacker represented a lethal threat. Phillip laughed, drew his card, and found no answer.
Gonzalo Velasquez 2, Phillip Fortner 0