Round 10 Feature Match:

Posted in Event Coverage on March 28, 2004

By Duncan McGregor

After having drafted next to each other Eugene and Mike now had to play each other for the first round on Sunday. Mike enlisted the aid of onlookers to get his deck sleeved in time, and then won the die roll, choosing to go first. Both players kept their opening hands.

Mike started the match with an Island and a Pyrite Spellbomb, giving Eugene a good look at his colors. Eugene answered with an Island of his own and a Steel Wall. Mike continued to build up with another Island and a Leaden Myr, while Eugene also developed with a Seat of the Synod and a Talisman of Dominance.

Mike didn't have a land drop for his third turn, but the Myr enabled a Wizard Replica. Eugene played a Vault of Whispers and a Talisman of Indulgence, and then a Nim Abomination, falling to seventeen at end-of-turn. Mike found an Island, swung in for one with the Replica and played an Arcbound Stinger.

When Eugene attacked on his next turn, Mike blocked with his Stinger, putting its counter onto the Replica. Eugene played another Nim Abomination, which took him down to thirteen. Mike used his Spellbomb to draw a card before Eugene ended his turn, then attacked for two and played a Mountain and an Arcbound Hybrid.

One of the Abominations was again chump-blocked when Eugene attacked, and the Wizard Replica grew to 4/6. Eugene had no further plays, but Mike found another Island to let him play a Looming Hoverguard. Facing lethal damage and drawing a useless artifact on his next turn, Eugene scooped.

The players joked about the Steel Wall between games. "It stopped the Leaden Myr for at least one turn," Eugene said half-heartedly. He also had to mulligan his first hand, but kept six cards. Mike stood on seven.

Eugene led off with a Swamp, while Mike duplicated the previous game with Island, Pyrite Spellbomb. Eugene had another Swamp for a second turn Arcbound Stinger, while Mike developed with a Mountain and a Talisman of Indulgence. Eugene attacked and played a Nim Abomination, leaving the life totals at seventeen-nineteen. Mike could only send off his Spellbomb for a card, and then play an Island.

Eugene swung in for four before playing a 2/1 Nim Lasher. Mike Regressed the Abomination during Eugene's end step, then played a Mountain and said go. Eugene had an Arcbound Bruiser to pump up the Lasher, and hit Mike to eleven.

Mike played another land and a Looming Hoverguard, sending the Arcbound Bruiser to the top of Eugene's library. Eugene replayed it and attacked with the Lasher. Mike thought for a minute, then blocked with the Hoverguard to trade.

He also thought for a while on his next turn, before using Echoing Ruin to off the Bruiser and Detonate to kill the Stinger. Eugene fell to fifteen, but had a Pewter Golem to renew the attack. Mike played an Arcane Spyglass and used it to draw a card, but then just said go.

Eugene's attack took Mike to seven, and he had a Talisman of Dominance, as well as the reappearance of the Nim Abomination. His life dropped to twelve, but Mike was not in a position to threaten him. After drawing another card with the Spyglass, his only play other than land was a Leaden Myr. Eugene played and equipped a Vulshok Morningstar onto the Abomination, which Mike chumped with the Myr. He drew a card for his turn and two with the Spyglass, but still had no way to live.

Both players did some sideboarding for Game 3. Mike sided in a Needlebug to help against the Pewter Golem, while Eugene was siding out instead; the Abominations were sent to the bench, and he brought in a Neurok Familiar and an Override.

Mike chose to play, and had a Necrogen Spellbomb to go with his Island this game. Eugene had just an Island, but that let him Annul Mike's turn-two Talisman of Indulgence. Eugene had no second-turn play other than Swamp, though.

Mike cycled his Spellbomb, then played a Mountain and an Arcbound Stinger. Eugene continued playing land, this time a Seat of the Synod. Mike attacked for one and played an Aether Spellbomb.

Eugene dropped a Scale of Chiss-Goria during Mike's end step, then played a Swamp and an Arcbound Stinger. Mike added a fourth Mountain to his side of the board and played a five-mana Spire Golem. Eugene's Myr Enforcer only cost four, and Eugene passed the turn back.

Mike drew a card with the Aether Spellbomb, then played another Mountain and Detonated the Stinger. His fliers took Eugene down to fourteen, while the Enforcer picked up the Stinger's counter. Eugene's counterattack hit Mike for five, and he played a land and a Welding Jar. Mike swung back with the Spire Golem and then played an Arcbound Fiend, which Eugene picked up and read to make sure he remembered it correctly.

Eugene still had no plays other than land, and had to watch as the Fiend stole the counter from the Enforcer. The fliers took Eugene to nine, and Mike continued to build up with a Pyrite Spellbomb and a Wizard Replica. Eugene's play of Steel Wall didn't help any, and when Mike finally found an Island to play his Looming Hoverguard, Eugene conceded.

Eugene explained that he had wanted to side the Steel Wall out as well, but had nothing to bring in for it. He and Mike spent a while discussing the way the draft went before wishing each other luck for the next rounds.

Final Result: Mike Turian - 2 Eugene Harvey - 1

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