Semifinals: Shenanigans vs. YMG/Illuminati

Posted in Event Coverage on April 18, 2004

By Michael Thicke

Osyp figured himself for a large favorite in this match. He has double Icy and Crystal Shard - three broken artifacts to take control of the match. However, Rob did have a few answers in Annul, Goblin Replica, and Echoing Ruin.

Osyp mulliganed to start the first game, having only one land in his opening draw. He kept his second hand of Island, Swamp x2, Irradiate, Nim Shrieker, and Echoing Truth. Rob kept his initial seven.

Icy Manipulator

Osyp came out of the gates fast with Silver Myr and Nim Shrieker, while Rob just said go for his first two turns, and played a third turn Leaden Myr. Nim Shrieker swung for three unopposed and Osyp played Myr Retriever. Rob thought for a while on his turn, eventually deciding to lay a Great Furnace and play Neurok Prodigy, leaving his Leaden Myr and an Island up. Osyp thought briefly about Echoing Truth, but elected to take his turn. He then played the Truth on his main phase, swung for another three with the Shrieker and added to his air force with Neurok Prodigy.

On Rob's turn he played Thirst for Knowledge to search for some answers to Osyp's threats. Due to his opponent's Echoing Truth tempo play, Rob probably knew the Prodigy wasn't safe, but it didn't look like he had any other options. Osyp drew a blank on his turn, but had his opening Irradiate to move the Prodigy out of the way again. Rob saved it by discarding Dragon Blood. Osyp's attack brought Rob to seven life.

Rob spent his next turn playing the Prodigy for the third time and removing Myr Retriever with Echoing Ruin. Osyp then drew one of his Icy Manipulators off the top to tap the Prodigy and swing for the win.

Osyp 1 - 0 Rob

Meanwhile Patrick had won his first game as well, and Adam and Darwin were still locked in the complicated-looking red-black mirror.

For the second game Osyp had a keeper in Island, Swamp x2, Arcbound Bruiser, Echoing Truth, Echoing Decay, and Relic Bane.

Rob opened with Leonin Scimitar and Goblin Replica, which Osyp Decayed. On his third turn Osyp played Relic Bane on Darksteel Citadel. Rob's only third turn play was a disappointing Dragon Blood. He had a better play on the next turn with Prodigy, though. Osyp's answer was Emissary of Despair, which would force the Prodigy to stay home, due to Rob's three artifacts. To up the pressure, Osyp bounced the Prodigy with Echoing Truth, and then on his turn played and used Icy Manipulator on Rob's newly-cast Neurok Familiar to allow the Emissary to attack. Combined with Relic Bane damage, this took Rob down to a precarious five life.

At this point Patrick won his match and Adam lost his first game, so it looked like Osyp's match would be important.

Rob tried to come back with the Familiar, but the Icy was too much. Osyp tapped both blockers and swung with the win. Even if Rob had found an answer to the Icy, it was unclear how Rob could have dealt with Relic Bane on his land, so Osyp always looked to be in control of the game and the match.

As soon as Osyp won, the stopped they third match. This proved to be quite lopsided overall in favor of Shenanigans, as Patrick's match was a landslide and Osyp always looked very in-control of his, even after his first game mulligan.

Shenanigans 2 - 0 YMG/Illuminait

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