2004 United States National Championship Feature Match

Posted in Event Coverage on June 19, 2004

By Toby Wachter

Neil Reeves made Top 8 last year, only to fall short of making the National team. Now he's one match away from a second chance. I asked Alex if he had any finishes I should know about, and he responded, "I made a Top 8 at Friday Night Magic" Reeves, always willing to get in a jab, responded, "Did you get a foil for that?"

There was a deckcheck before the round started, and as it took more time, Reeves began to lament that he'd be getting a penalty. Indeed, he got a game loss for listing Naturalizes in his sideboard when they were Nantuko Vigilantes. Reeves took it in stride and told the story about how it happened- he had a hard time finding Vigilantes and only found them at the last minute, forgetting to change his registration sheet.

Reeves- 0 Melnikow- 1

Game 2

Nantuko Vigilante

Reeves, looks at opening hand- "I can't possibly win, but I'll keep."

He started with a Skirk Prospector, and Melnikow played Wirewood Symbiote. Reeves played a Sparksmith, complaining, "I can't tell you how defeated I feel right now." The Sparksmith shot the Symbiote, the Prospector attacked for one, and Reeves missed his third land drop. Melnikow summoned Viridian Shaman, and it died to a Sparksmith shot before Reeeves played Goblin Sledder. Melnikow tapped out for Vernal Bloom, and had Triskellion on the following turn. Reeves targeted it with Electrostatic Bolt, and Melnikow killed everything but the Sledder in response, due to Reeves using its activations. He followed with a Shaman and a Birds, and Reeves found his third land, playing Goblin Sharpshooter. The Shaman attacked for two, and Melnikow's Duplicant targeted a Sharpshooter, which was sacrificed to the Sledder in response.

Melnikow now had no cards in hand, and Reeves played another Sharpshooter.

Revves- "Self-fufilling prophecies suck. Last night I said, 'You know what's gonna happen? I'm gonna run the (draft) table, and lose the last round.'"

A short moment after he said that, Melnikow had the Fireball to finish it and send him to the Top 8.

Reeves- 0 Melnikow- 2

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