Lount and Raymond are both relatively untested players, with no major events to their name. The pair had just been defeated by veterans Terry Tsang and Gary Wise, respectively, leaving them in the loser's bracket to fight it out for the third or fourth position on the National Team. Lount's Dark Fires deck was largely taken from internet sources, while Raymond's very original "Digger" deck was of his own design, and had attracted a huge amount of attention from spectators all weekend.
Both player's hand contained a lot of useful action, with Ben dropping a quick pair of Vodalian Zombies (incredibly strong in this matchup), while Sam set out a Fires of Yavimaya. Faced with the threat of a Blastoderm racing his Zombies, Ben thought a while before deciding to attack, making the attack and replacing a Zombie with a Doomsday Specter.
Flametongue Kavu came down onto the table smashing the Doomsday Specter to set up for a race rather than removing the offending Zombie. Ben's hand including a lot of action, and he was faced with a number of choices, but opted to take out the Fires of Yavimaya with an Urborg Emissary. A Fire took out the Emissary and a Fires of Yavimaya hit the table again on the next turn, setting Sam back into the aggressive seat, but Ben still had a lot of options left, playing a Crypt Angel to bring Doomsday Specter back to his hand and set up the graveyard recursion engine.
Sam continued to mount an offense with a Saproling Burst. Making 4 tokens, he came over for a quick kill by sacrificing Fires of Yavimaya.
Ben brought in Juntu Stakes and a few Tsabo's Decree, while Sam brought in Thunderscape Battlemage.
Game 2Sam Lount vs. Ben Raymond
Both players opened the game with mulligans, with Ben adding pressure with Ravenous Rats (taking out a land). Though holding a Juntu Stakes, Ben held back the card, waiting to potentially hold down a Bird or an Elf. Sam sat back for a bit, using his Rishadan Port to keep Ben off of mana, finally offing the offending Ravenous Rat with Fire.
Drawing a fifth land on the next turn (including his first Green source), he dropped a Fires of Yavimaya, and Ben, without a reasonable offensive play put out the Juntu Stakes. Sam followed up with a Thunderscape Battlemage (taking out a Cavern Harpy and a Doomsday Specter), but packed anything too threatening in his own hand.
Gravedigger pulled back a Cavern Harpy for Ben on the next turn, but he still lacked a source for Blue mana. With a Rishadan Port in play, this could be potentially devastating. The Digger traded with the Thunderscape Battlemage, and a mostly impotent Llanowar Elf also joined the fray. Laying his first Blue source of mana, he Recoiled a Fires of Yavimaya after Sam tapped out to come in with a Saproling Burst.
Rat recursion quickly began, with a Cavern Harpy sitting on defense. A second Fires and a Blastoderm put same heavily on the offensive, but he did lose the Elf to the Stakes. A pair of Rats came out on the defense, but even without Sam's new Spiritmonger, they were too little, too late, and Sam came across on the following turn with more than enough damage to finish off Ben.
Game 3Ben Raymond
The next game started slowly, with a second turn Juntu Stakes not holding down anything in particular, and a Rishadan Port slowing down Ben just a tad. With a few turns without action, Sam dropped a Spiritmonger, losing a Bird of Paradise to the Stakes in the meantime. A Gravedigger came into play as a random blocker for a turn, and Sam dropped the second Spiritmonger to go on the offensive.
With a Tsabo's Decree, in hand, Ben was just a mana short of taking out both Mongers, but the Rishadan port was likely a huge threat now, with two Mongers on the board. Another Gravedigger came out to begin the slow process of continuously blocking Mongers, and again on the next turn the Digger saved it's cousin.
A Ghitu Fire tore the Digger out of the way, and the two Mongers finished off Ben real quick.
Final Result: Lount 3 - Raymond 0