Semifinals: Nick Verrall vs. Daniel Longoria
Abzan Aggro will be in the finals one way or another. Will Nick, the top seed, get there or will Daniel pull the upset?
Nick led with a Temple of Silence and Daniel opened with a Thoughtseize, taking a Sorin, Solemn Visitor from Nick’s hand. Nick had no play and Daniel made the first cat in the matchup, a Fleecemane Lion. Nick fetched a Forest and landed his cat, Rakshasa Deathdealer. Daniel attacked for three and added a Warden of the First Tree.
Nick attacked with his Dealer and hit for two before passing. Daniel went to fetch at the end of the turn, but Nick responded with a Dromoka’s Command, putting a counter on the Dealer and fighting the Warden. Daniel kept turning the Lion sideways and played a Deathdealer of his own. Nick served in with his Dealer and dropped Daniel to 9 and played a Lion of his own before passing.
Daniel attacked with his Lion, knocking Nick to 10 and ended his turn with a raided Wingmate Roc. Nick looked at his next card, but with a handful of Rhinos and no fourth land he picked up his cards.
Daniel 1, Nick 0
Nick was happy with his seven while Daniel went down to five before finding a passable hand. Nick led with a pair of Sandsteppe Citadels and Daniel hit the board first with a Fleecemane Lion. Nick had a Lion of his own and passed after playing a Temple of Malady. Daniel got in for three and played a Rakshasa Deathdealer before passing with no third land.
Nick served in with his Lion and used a Dromoka’s Command after no blocks were declared to kill the opposing Lion and to grow his own. Daniel deployed a Warden and knocked Nick down to 15. Nick sent his Lion into the red zone and followed it up with another Lion. Daniel played a Temple of Silence and passed with no attacks after bottoming the scry and Nick used an end-of-turn Abzan Charm to draw two cards.
Nick played a land and attacked with his Lion, leading Daniel to block and regenerate his Deathdealer. Nick played a post-combat Elspeth, Sun’s Champion and made three soldiers. Daniel played a Planeswalker of his own, Sorin, Solemn Visitor, and made a Vampire. Nick sent his team at Sorin, taking it down before playing his own Sorin and making more soldiers. Daniel drew for his turn and had seen enough.
Daniel 1, Nick 1
Both were happy with their openers and Daniel played a second-turn Warden and a Temple of Silence to get the action started. Nick passed after playing a second land and took three from the Warden when Daniel leveled it up. Nick played land-go for a third turn, and took three from the Warden before he played a Siege Rhino, dropping Nick to 11. Nick went to 10 at the end of the turn to kill the Rhino with a Valorous Stance, untapped and kept a card on top of his deck with a Temple of Malady.
Daniel attempted to attack with his Warden, but Nick killed it with a Hero’s Downfall, leading Daniel to play a Morph and pass the turn. Nick played a Morph as well and Daniel flipped his Den Protector, getting back the Rhino. Nick attacked with his Den Protector and Nick flipped his own Protector, getting a Hero’s Downfall back. Daniel slammed a raided Wingmate Roc and passed back.
Nick played Sorin and made a Vampire and shipped the turn. Daniel played a Sorin as well, upping it, and attempted to attack, but Nick killed the Roc with a Valorous Stance. Nick was forced to chump with his Vampire and Daniel passed. Nick upped his Sorin to start his turn and used an Abzan Charm to kill the bird token and used a Hero’s Downfall to destroy the opposing Planeswalker.
Daniel used a Downfall of his own to kill the opposing Sorin and dropped Nick to 2 with the Siege Rhino he got back with the earlier Den Protector. Nick had his own Rhino to go back up to 5, bringing Daniel to 23. Daniel used a Self-Inflicted Wound to clear the opposing Rhino and attacked for the win.
Daniel 2, Nick 1