Semifinals: Josh Cho vs. Morgan McLaughlin
Perhaps most famous for his ‘Cho-Hawk,’ Pro Tour Avacyn Restored top 8 competitor Josh Cho has brought M13 Master of the Pearl Trident to the table today, along with several other Merfolk. Morgan McLaughlin may not have Josh’s track record, but he’s got the top seed and RUG Delver to the table. Both players looked pensive getting ready for the match. After all, they were playing for a chance to play for the SCG championship trophy!
A wild Josh Cho appears!
Morgan has the play since he is the player with the number one overall seed, and with the play and a full seven card hand, led with a Nimble Mongoose off of a Tropical Island, courtesy of Scalding Tarn.Josh Cho, who also kept his opener, started with Island and AEther Vial, which got Force of Willed (pitching another Force). Nimble Mongoose attacked for one and a second Tropical Island joined Morgan’s board. Josh cast Cursecatcher on his turn two, and in response Morgan cast Brainstorm. Cursecatcher resolved and was joined by another AEther Vial.
Nimble Mongoose traded with Cursecatcher, and Morgan dropped Nimble Mongoose and Delver of Secrets. AEther Vial added a counter and Josh played Lord of Atlantis. Morgan’s Delver flipped thanks to a Lightning Bolt and cracked in for three. Josh put a Cursecatcher into play at end of turn, then untapped and attempted to cast Standstill, which Morgan allowed to resolve. Josh attacked, and after declaration of no blockers, he Vialed in a Master of the Pearl Trident, dealt six damage and passed the turn.
Morgan cast Tarmogoyf, which cracked the Standstill, and attacked with the Insectile Aberration. Josh, now with some new cards thanks to the Odyssey enchantment, activated Vial and put a Coralhelm Commander into play. He leveled up the Merfolk Lord the whole way and attacked Morgan, and since the total power of his Islandwalking ground force exceeded Morgan’s life total, they moved on to the next game.
Josh 1, Morgan 0.
Morgan thinks hard about his upcoming match.
Morgan mulliganed on the play, and even though Josh sweated his decision, he decided to mulligan. After keeping six, he cast Nimble Mongoose to start the game. Josh Cho led with Mutavault and AEther Vial. Morgan’s second turn saw an attack from the Nimble Mongoose and a Volcanic Island, but no turn two play. Josh added a counter to the Vial, played Wasteland (which wasted Volcanic Island), and passed.
Morgan agonized over his next turn’s decisions, and decided to Wasteland Josh’s Mutavault, and he Vialed in a Cursecatcher. Josh attacked with said 1/1 and played an Island before passing. Nimble Mongoose attacked, and Josh put Coralhelm Commander into play but it was Lightning Bolted before he could block. On Josh’s turn Spell Pierce countered AEther Vial and Josh’s 1/1 once again poked away at Morgan’s life total, dropping him to 17. Morgan cast Forked Bolt splitting the damage between Cursecatcher and Josh, but the Cho-Hawk Vialed in Lord of Atlantis to put that plan to bed.
A thresholded Nimble Mongoose dealt three to Josh, putting life totals at 14 for josh and 16 for Morgan. Josh found a second land for the Standstill in his hand, but it met Daze. Josh attacked and passed. Morgan attacked with Nimble Mongoose. Josh attacked with his Merfolk army and dropped Morgan to 6. Morgan didn’t find what he was looking for on top and he scooped up his cards.
Josh 2, Morgan 0.