Seminfinal – Aaron Lewis vs. Philip Yam

Posted in Event Coverage on January 19, 2014

By Mike Rosenberg

Mike Rosenberg is a writer and gamer and has been part of the Magic text coverage team since 2011. He joined Wizards as organized play’s content specialist in June 2014.

While Madison resident Aaron Lewis is adding another solid Limited record to his Magic career, with his performance today being his second Grand Prix Top 8, San Francisco native Philip Yam was not ready to stop winning yet.

The Decks

Lewis's blue-red deck packs some powerful synergies and features many creatures that just love getting suited up with Aqueous Form. Alongside these synergies are a few powerful rare threats, including Bident of Thassa and Master of Waves.

Philip Yam's blue-black deck, however, is not short of any powerful cards. Aside from the unsurprising assortment of brutal common and uncommon options in both colors, Yam also has some solid blue rares such as Prognostic Sphinx and the mighty Thassa, God of the Sea.

The Games

While Lewis had an Aqueous Form to let his Vaporkin punch through Yam's own copy of the flying creature, Yam called on some help from the gods with Thassa, God of the Sea. It was joined by Meletis Charlatan on the next turn.

Lewis, however, had his own mythic in the form of Master of Waves, which made three elemental tokens. The now 3/2 Vaporkin attacked in, dropping Yam to 15. Yam, however, was not out of the game by any means. Prognostic Sphinx brought Thassa's devotion to the required amount, and it attacked in alongside Vaporking, prompting Lewis to block Thassa with one of his elemental tokens. The Vaporkin continued its attack, allowing Lewis to scry through his deck thanks to Aqueous Form. He dropped Wavecrash Triton and Satyr Rambler post-combat and passed back to Yam.

Aaron Lewis

However, Thassa began to do her work. Yam made his god unblockable, and attacks dropped Lewis to 6. When no answer to Thassa's devoted army awaited Lewis on top, Lewis moved on to the second game.

Yam was the first to act despite being on the draw in the second game with Triton Fortune Hunter. It was met by Purphoros's Emissary, which Lewis opted not to block with when Yam attacked in with his Fortune Hunter. The 2/2 creature was joined by Cavern Lampad after that, as Yam passed back.

Lewis was content with the decision, as he gave his Emissary the Ordeal of Purphoros. It was sent in for 4. Yam sent in his two creatures, dropping Lewis to 14, but when he passed with five mana open, Lewis's decisions became a lot harder. When Lewis sent in his Emissary, Griptide promptly sent the creature to the top of Lewis's deck. Boon of Erebos saved his creature from Rage of Purphoros...at least until the text was pointed out that this wouldn't save a creature from the sorcery Lewis just cast. Without regeneration able to save his Cavern Lampad, Yam was now down a trick as well as a creature.

Philip Yam

Yam replaced his now dead Lampad with Opaline Unicorn, while Lewis emptied his hand for Ill-Tempered Cyclops and Aqueous Form on the 3/3. Yam fired back with Prescient Chimera. The back-breaker, however, was Keepsake Gorgon. Despite a Bident of Thassa waiting on top, Lewis's only creature was about to be turned to stone by the Gorgon on the next turn.

When an attack and a draw with the Bident turned over no answers for Lewis, the Madison player offered the handshake.

Lewis 0 – Yam 2

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