Semifinals: Corey Baumeister vs. Chad Kastel

Posted in Event Coverage on March 8, 2015

By Peter Rawlings

Corey Baumeister had reached the semifinals in Miami after dispatching Zan Syed in the quarterfinals. In that match he had been able to show off the power of his Mastery of the Unseen-based Green-White Devotion deck, which had pulled him back from the brink in the first game, with its ability to gain life and flood the board with an army of manifest tokens.

Chad Kastel and his Abzan Whip deck had taken down Andrew Boswell's Abzan Aggro in the quarterfinals. Hornet Queen had proved decisive for Kastel there, and it seemed likely to be important once again, as Kastel would need to find some way to get past the ground-clogging army his opponent would try to assemble.

Game 1

Both players quickly began gumming up the board in Game 1. Kastel played two copies of Sylvan Caryatid, a Satyr Wayfinder and a Siege Rhino, while Baumeister answered Fleecemane Lion, Courser of Kruphix, Polukranos, World Eater and Whisperwood Elemental.

Baumeister doubles up on his Whisperwood Elementals and Genesis Hydras in Game 1

Soon enough Baumeister found and played a copy of Mastery of the Unseen. Then a Genesis Hydra for five the hit board. Then a second copy of Genesis Hydra for six. When it found a second copy of Whisperwood Elemental, Kastel had seen enough. He picked up his Siege Rhino—which looked weak, for once, in comparison to Baumeister's growing army of green monsters and 2/2s—and the players moved on to the second game.

Baumeister 1 – Kastel 0

Game 2

Kastel's first two plays were both Thoughtseize stripping a Courser of Kruphix and Valorous Stance from Baumeister, and leaving him with some mana accelerants and a Genesis Hydra. He then used those cheap discard spells to fuel an early Tasigur, the Golden Fang.

Kastel started off Game 2 with a pair of Thoughtseizes.

When Baumeister's Genesis Hydra finally came down in reply, it was with five counters, though it netted him a mere Elvish Mystic in the process. A Downfall took care of the Hydra, while a Read the Bones drew Kastel into a Drown in Sorrow which sank three of Baumeister's mana dorks, leaving him with a Caryatid and Courser.

A Banishing Light exiled Baumeister's follow-up Polukranos, and a Reclamation Sage took care of the Green-White players' Courser. Baumeister answered with a Banishing Light of his own—for Kastel's Tasigur.

Kastel set about rebuilding his board with a Hornet Queen, but Baumeister was already at work with first Whisperwood Elemental, and then Mastery of the Unseen. Kastel needed an answer, and fast. He found a Courser, which revealed a Glare of Heresy atop his library, but Mastery was already well on it's way to getting out of hand. Baumeister had assembled a board of two Whisperwood Elementals, three manifest tokens,  and two Coursers. Sitting at 2 life, and a horde of lethal attackers, Kastel drew and extended his hand.

Baumeister 2 – Kastel 0

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