Gerry Thompson's jaunt around the United States continues stopping off in Texas this weekend for our Open Series. He's playing the same archetype he took to the Memphis Top 8 UWb Caw-Blade with some minor improvements to account for metagame shifts. Trevor Hunt is his opponent a State Champion piloting one of the Squawk's worst matchups: Mono Red.
Trevor kept his opening hand laying just a Mountain while Gerry sent two cards to the bottom with Seachrome Coast and Preordain. A Plated Geopede for Trevor met a Darkslick Shores and a pass from Gerry. Goblin Guide and Mountain joined the board but a Doom Blade slew the Geopede as Gerry peeled a Darkslick off the top. On his next turn Gerry's Inquisition of Kozilek took a Searing Blaze while he followed with a Squadron Hawk for two more leaving Trevor on just a pair of Teetering Peaks.
Trevor dropped one and attacked Gerry choosing to take 6 damage rather than chump. Trevor was intrigued but he had no other spells. A pair of Hawks followed by no search led to laughter as Gerry sheepishly revealed a fourth Hawk in the hand. A Searing Blaze after a Teetering Peaks dropped Gerry to 9 and he double-blocked the Ember Hauler and took 4 from the Guide falling to 5 life. Preordain dug Gerry toward an answer but all he had was another Hawk and a Stoneforge Mystic for Sword of Feast and Famine.
Goblin Guide revealed a Plains and traded with Gerry's Stoneforge while the Hawk escaped unscathed; Trevor passed with no other plays. An Inquisition of Kozilek convinced Trevor to Staggershock revealing just a Scalding Tarn and leaving Gerry did to pretty much anything. He swung with a Sworded Hawk adding a second Sword to it after combat. Trevor drew and passed losing a Mountain to the hawk's next assault. “Rats” Gerry said as Trevor revealed a Lightning Bolt from the top of the deck. “You got so lucky drawing to your 37-outer.”
Trevor 1 Gerry 0
“So how spicy is your sideboard?” Trevor asked and Gerry smiled. The post-boarded games were very important in this matchup as Caw-Blade would remain significantly behind without some kind of dedicated answers to a red opponent. Firewalker or Celestial Purge could make or break the matchup and Trevor couldn't be sure what he'd be up against.
Gerry opened on just a Seachrome Coast while Trevor had a Goblin Guide revealing a Preordain and earning a Condemn from Gerry. Preordain dug Gerry into the deck but just a Glacial Fortress followed. Trevor winced as he played a Teetering Peaks tapped with no other options available. Gerry cast Preordain followed by Stoneforge Mystic for Sword of Feast and Famine which earned a quick Burst Lightning from Trevor. Land go followed for the red deck.
“More Preordain?” Trevor asked as Gerry cast a third one cracking Marsh Flats to get a Swamp and cast Inquisition of Kozilek. It resolved peeking at a pair of Searing Blazes a Burst Lightning a Mark of Mutiny and a Koth of the Hammer—Gerry took the Burst Lightning hoping to manascrew his opponent. His Hawk for the trio met a tiny Searing Blaze and Trevor promptly drew Mountain and cast Koth of the Hammer cracking home with a 4/4 Mountain.
Gerry cast Gideon Jura for the +2 blanking Koth for a turn and ideally slaying him immediately after. Trevor had a draw step to find a creature but he did not. He sent a Bolt into Gideon and then the Mountain dropping the planeswalker to a single loyalty. Gerry took Searing Blaze from Trevor's hand with an Inquisition and sent Gideon into Koth following with a pair of Hawks as mark of Mutiny languished in Trevor's hand. One Hawk blocked his brother to keep Gideon alive via the Mark and this game appeared out of hand.
Gideon went on the offensive after the Squadron Hawk picked up Sword of Feast and Famine discarding Ember Hauler from Trevor's hand and knocking him to 12. Another Hawk landed picking up the sword and Trevor peeled at the deck. He found a little fire casting Staggershock to finish Gideon but Trevor ended his turn on the wrong end of some Squadron Hawks.
A Preordain led to Jace the Mind Sculptor hitting the board fatesealing Trevor and leaving the card. “A good one?” Trevor asked. “A good one for me” Gerry said attacking Trevor to 7. Trevor drew dropped Arid Mesa and passed turn barely alive after Staggershocking one of the Hawks down. A Stoneforge to shuffle away Gerry's brainstorm came down on Gerry's turn and his attack took Trevor to 2 life. Trevor drew and scooped.
Trevor 1 Gerry 1
Trevor had no Goblin Guide on the first turn while Gerry had Inquisition of Kozilek. He stripped Plated Geopede from a hand containing Staggershock 2 Mark of Mutiny Lightning Bolt and an Arid Mesa—Trevor drew dropped the Mesa and sent turn. A second Inquisition began Gerry's turn revealing a Mountain had joined the hand and removing the Staggershock. Preordain sent two cards to the bottom and Gerry passed the turn.
Trevor continued to not play Magic after having his hand stripped dropping just a Mountain and a Duress from Gerry prompted a Bolt to the dome and removed one of the Marks from Trevor's hand. Gerry added a Seachrome Coast to the board and passed the turn. Trevor cracked his Mesa to dig up a Mountain but had no other plays sitting on a fetch and a Mark in his hand. Gerry Hawked for the full amount on his fourth turn while Trevor bricked on a Mountain off the top.
A second Hawk joined the board and a Doom Blade took out Trevor's Geopede immediately after he deployed it. A third Hawk hit the field and a Flashfreeze prevented Ember Hauler from touching the ground. Gerry cast Gideon Jura and it looked to be all but over now. Trevor was on 12 life facing down 9 damage and Gerry still had a grip. Mark of Mutiny sent a Hawk into Gideon while a Searing Blaze removed another and trimmed him down to 3 loyalty. Gerry cast Preordain followed with Jace the Mind Sculptor and left Trevor's top card there with a fateseal.
Trevor checked the card and pondered as to whether there was any card Gerry wouldn't have left on top. Gerry laughed failing to come up with an answer and Trevor picked up his many lands. “At least I didn't punt.”
Trevor 1 Gerry 2