Posted in Event Coverage on March 28, 2004

By Ted Knutson

Both competitors managed to make it through fifteen grueling rounds of swiss plus their quarterfinals opponents to wind up here, flipping coins for thousands of dollars. Or they would be shortly anyway, as Mike Turian's W/r deck featured both Wirefly Hive and Goblin Archeologist. Aaron was pretty down on his deck entering the match, describing it as very bad, and explaining that he felt rather lucky just to be here.

Game 1

Aaron won the die roll and chose to play. Electrostatic Bolt, Pewter Golem, Unforge and four lands greeted Aaron, as Turian kicked things off with an Auriok Glaivemaster. Leonin Scimitar plus an attack dropped Aaron to seventeen, but Unforge cleared away both the equipment and the creature before they could cause any more trouble.

Wirefly Hive

Aaron played a Nim Lasher on his turn, while Turian built a team of 1/1s with Raise the Alarm, Arcbound Worker, and Gold Myr. A Pewter Golem from Aaron stabilized the board and got his beats on before being joined by his twin. Slith Ascendant from Turian met Aaron's e-Bolt, and the Pewter Golems started lowering Mike's life total in steady increments of four. Meanwhile, all Mike was managing to draw was land.

Fortunately, that land helped him yank one of Aaron' Pewter Golems with Grab the Reins and send it crashing into his freshly-cast Cathodion, changing the dynamic of the game considerably.

Mke cast Wirefly Hive on the next turn and began digging for a quarter until a spectator offered one.

"Is it a good luck quarter?" Mike asked. "It's neutral," replied the fan. "Oh, then I don't want that," said the gentlemanly potato as he went back to searching for a quarter of his own.

Mike activated the Hive before blockers, and fumbled with his coin a couple times before pitching into off the table and onto the floor. From that point forward, he gave the quarter to a judge to flip so that he wouldn't have to go searching for it after every flip.

Mike managed to continue to win coin flips, and his Hive tokens blocked Aaron's remaining Pewter Golem turn after turn, buying Mike time to draw out of his stall.

Vulshok Berserker entered the fray, and quickly equalized the life totals, as Turian continued to win coinflips, and was actually able to start swinging with 2/2 fliers, since Lipczynski now needed to keep the Golem back as a blocker. Aaron's deck stopped providing him anything other than land to deal with Mike's tokens, and he was quickly done in by Wirefly tokens.

Mike: "As much as it may look like Wirefly Hive won that match, I think I'm going to give the credit to Grab the Reins. Though, the Hive played a big part too, I guess. I think I won five or six flips there and lost only one."

Turian 1 - Lipczynski 0

Game 2

"My deck is really bad," was the lament from Lipczynski, as it looked like Turian was lucky enough to get paired up against a second underpowered deck in a row.

"Did you see Kate's deck?" asked Mike, "I think hers was actually worse."

Aaron started off game 2 with the inauspicious start of parising to six. Leonin Bola and Gold Myr kicked thinks off for Mike, while Aaron' Cathodion got in a swing before being slowed by Mike's Soldier Replica and Leonin Bola. Mike dropped Lodestone Myr on the following turn, as Aaron paused while trying to figure out how to maximize the Consume Spirit and Barter in Blood in his hand. He decided to attack with Cathodion, which was blocked by a 4/4 Lodestone Myr, that subsequently died to the Consume after combat.

Mike powered up his Soldier Replica with Vulshok Morningstar and Leonin Scimitar, as he began to outrace Aaron's lone Nim Shambler. Wirefly Hive again made an appearance, ensuring that the coinflipping madness would begin in a second game, as soon as Mike was able to untap. Barter in Blood from Lipczynski cleared the board, but Turian just cast Slith Ascendant to keep the pressure on. Grimclaw Bats and the Ascendant got into a stare down, but one that the Ascendant would with the aid of Leonin Bola.

Turian finally struck out on a flip, meaning he wasn't able to make any tokens, but Detonate on Lipczynski's Nim Replica plus a Skullclamp on Slith Ascendant dropped Aaron to five.

Grimclaw Bats traded with the Ascendant on the next turn, but Turian got to draw two cards and do three points of damage to Aaron anyway because of the bat pumps. Two more lost coinflips meant Turian had no flyers to get past Aaron's Steel Wall, and the beatings slowed down for a moment, with Aaron at a precious two life.

"Here you go, not as lucky judge," Turian said, needing only a single flip of the coin to win the match. The result finally went his way in this second game, and Mike Turian was on to the finals.

Turian 2 - Lipczynski 0

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