Semifinals: Michael Miller vs. Dylan Lerch
Both sides of the bracket have Sultai Control vs. Jeskai Aggro? Would Michael continue on as the top seed with Sultai or could Dylan pull the upset with Jeskai?
Both players opened with a pair of temples and Dylan made the first move with a Goblin Rabblemaster, but Michael shot it down with a Hero’s Downfall before combat. Michael played a Satyr Wayfinder that bricked, but he did have a Disdainful Stroke for Dylan’s Turn 5 Sarkhan, the Dragon Speaker.
Michael got in for one with his Wayfinder and killed Dylan’s Mantis Rider with a Bile Blight before combat. Michael played a second Wayfinder, hitting an Opulent Palace and passed after playing it. Michael served in with his 1/1s and Dylan killed them both with a Wild Slash and a Lightning Strike. Michael followed it up with a Thoughtseize to take a Dig Through Time, leaving Dylan with a Disdainful Stroke and a Valorous Stance.
Both players exchanged land drops for a turn and Dylan landed a Soulfire Grand Master. Michael played a Kiora, the Crashing Wave, but it ran into the Stroke he was aware of, and shipped the turn. Dylan bashed for two and passed, leaving Michael at 16. Michael resolved Ugin, the Spirit Dragon and used a -2 to exile the Grand Master. Dylan passed his next turn and Michael began upping Ugin to hit for Dylan for three.
Dylan again had no play and dropped to 11 from Ugin on Michael’s next turn. Dylan sent a Stoke the Flames at Ugin on the end step, dropping its loyalty down to five. Dylan used a Wild Slash and a Lightning Strike to finally kill the Planeswalker, but Michael played a replacement Ugin on his next turn, prompting the concession from Dylan.
Michael 1, Dylan 0
Double tapped lands led things off and Dylan hit the board on Turn 3 with a Mantis Rider that hit Michael for three. Michael used a Sultai Charm on his third turn to draw two and discard one, passed, and took three more from the Rider. Michael played a Temple of Malady and passed, falling to 10 on the next combat step. When Dylan passed, Michael used another Charm to draw more cards.
Michael scryed away a card with a Temple of Deceit and shipped the turn back. Dylan attacked and Michael finally dealt with the 3/3 with a Bile Blight. Dylan followed it up with a Goblin Rabblemaster and passed, still on three lands. Michael killed the Rabblemaster and gained two life with a Pharika’s Cure and passed after adding an Opulent Palace to his board. Dylan had to move to discard after missing on land again, prompting Michael to use a Dig Through Time that got countered by a Disdainful Stroke.
Michael landed Kiora and drew a card, but didn’t have the extra land to benefit fully. Dylan attempted to kill the Planeswalker with a new Rabblemaster, but Michael had the Bile Blight to kill it before the token. Michael ticked up Kiora as Dylan discarded a Valorous Stance. Michael drew a card off Kiora on his next turn and passed again with no play. Dylan binned another Stance and Michael was content playing lands and upping Kiora. Dylan finally found a fourth land, a Temple of Epiphany and he passed after playing it. Michael went for a Garruk, Apex Predator and had the backup Negate to counter Dylan’s Disdainful Stroke. Michael made a Beast and passed.
Dylan used his opening to land an Outpost Siege on Khans and passed the turn. Michael knocked Dylan to 17 with the Beast and made another 3/3 before playing a Satyr Wayfinder that gave him a Temple of Malady. Dylan played a Seeker of the Way from his Siege and played another that led to a Biel Blight taking them both out at the end of the turn. Michael dropped Dylan to 10 and drew a card off Kiora. Michael played an Ugin and before he could put dice on it, Dylan extended the hand.
Michael 2, Dylan 0