Top 4 Teams of Grand Prix Santa Clara 2018

Posted in Event Coverage on January 8, 2018

By Event Coverage Staff

After fourteen rounds, only four teams of three remained in the running for the fame and the fortune, the titles and the trophies. Find out more about these people here!


Jonathan Anghelescu / Vidianto Wijaya / Logan Nettles

Name: Jonathan Anghelescu

Age: 24

Hometown: Berlin, Germany

Occupation: Student/MTGO Grinder

Previous Magic Accomplishments:

Qualified for two PTs via Legacy.

MOCS 2016 Top 4.

Legacy MOCS Champion.

GP New Jersey 2014 Top 16.

What format and deck did you play and why?

Legacy. Sneak and Show. It's the most powerful deck with only two bad matchups.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Hardcast Mindbreak Trap.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

I usually finished my match before my teammates, and they didn't need much help since they're both excellent players. I did enjoy giving Vidi bad advice and still seeing him win.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

A lot; the twelve-hour flight was worth it. Being able to play Legacy at PT 25 is awesome!


Name: Vidianto Wijaya

Age: 33

Hometown: Jakarta, Indonesia

Occupation: Secret Agent Man

Previous Magic Accomplishments:

Won GP Denver 2013.

Top 8 GP Atlanta 2014.

Some other cash finishes.

What format and deck did you play and why?

Modern. White-Blue Gideon because it's fun to play and Azorius cards are sweet.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Commit // Memory out of Logan's Temur Energy deck.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

I have never met them before this tournament, not a joke. Nothing special in particular, but I'm glad we get along well.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

This Top 4 means that I don't have to go to the RPTQ.


Name: Logan Nettles

Age: 29

Hometown: Santa Ynez, California

Occupation: Magic Online

Previous Magic Accomplishments:

Top 16 Pro Tour Nagoya

Two-time MOCS competitor, including this year

What format and deck did you play and why?

Standard. I played Temur because it's the best deck in Standard and I couldn't break Chart a Course.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Nissa, Vital Force in the maindeck.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

We're all great players and had great morale. Their support was invaluable.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

It's just nice to have success in a game I've put a lot of time into.


Joe Demestrio / Nathan Holiday / Ricky Sidher

Name: Joe Demestrio

Age: 22

Hometown: Oakland, CA

Occupation: Uber HQ

Previous Magic Accomplishments:

Second at GP Portland 2013

Losing every Win-and-In

What format and deck did you play and why?

Standard. Temur. Nothing else is playable.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Embalm creatures not being red.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

Ricky winning every match.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

Christian Calcano and Ben Friedman will love me again.


Name: Nathan Holiday

Age: 26

Hometown: Santa Cruz, CA

Occupation: Student

Previous Magic Accomplishments:

Top 16 Pro Tour Vancouver.

Some Grand Prix Top 8s with a win.

What format and deck did you play and why?

Modern, I like it. Four-Color Death's Shadow. Temur Battle Rage is fun.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Padeem, Consul of Innovation

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

We didn't help each other very much. Ricky winning every round.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

Maybe win the tournament! Team PT should be fun.


Name: Ricky Sidher

Age: 25

Hometown: Woodland, CA

Occupation: School

Previous Magic Accomplishments:

A bunch of high finishes at GPs and SCGs, but nothing recently.

What format and deck did you play and why?

Legacy. Four-Color Control, because I wanted to play all the good cards.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Diabolic Edict

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

We pretty much played our own games.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

A lot. Getting back on the PT is a relief.


William Ho / John Martin / Jeremy Frye

Name: William Ho

Age: 30

Hometown: Austin, Texas

Occupation: Manager

Previous Magic accomplishments:

I won a wacky draft!

What format and deck did you play and why?

Standard. Four-Color Temur because if The Scarab God of Vraska, Relic Seeker resolve, it's usually in your favor to win.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Whirler Virtuoso ... it's the MVP.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

It helped with mulligans. Jeremy and I carried John Day 1.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

More Standard mirrors...


Name: John Martin

Age: 26

Hometown: Austin, Texas

Occupation: Student

Previous Magic accomplishments:

I won a Game Day

What format and deck did you play and why?

Modern, Dredge. I love the deck.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Modern was mostly normal. I guess the mill deck Round 1.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

I've never been more heavy in my life. Winning Round 4 – Round 13 in a row.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

Finally get to play at the Pro Tour with my best friends.


Name: Jeremy Frye

Age: 26

Hometown: College Station, Texas

Occupation: Systems Analyst

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Top 4 Grand Prix San Antonio 2015

What format and deck did you play and why?

Legacy Grixis Delver

I've played it for years and it's the best deck in Legacy.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

One of my Lands opponents had Fling.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

The Modern player and I share our opening hands a lot and get opinions on decisions which was a very valuable help. Helping navigate through a game that had unique lines.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

I've been trying to get back here for years. It's super exciting to where I can't contain it.


Galan Falakfarsa / Dan Mabee / Isaac Sears

Name: Galan Falakfarsa

Age: 23

Hometown: Davis, California

Occupation: Behavioral Therapist

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Grand Prix Day 2, PTQ Old System Top 8s, some PPTQ Top 8s, and a couple wins, some other stuff. Mostly just this.

What format and deck did you play and why?

Modern, Mardu Pyro/Reveler. I like playing "fair" hyper-interactive strategies, and the deck is quite powerful. Also, I like pretty much all the cards in the deck an unhealthy amount.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Probably Bedlam Reveler. Not really a "surprise" it is reaffirmed how sweet it is.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

My teammates were helpful in though spots (stating the obvious). I would say the stand out was winning our win-and-in.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

It means my first Pro Tour qualification after five years of grinding. Feelsgoodman.


Name: Dan Mabee

Age: 31

Hometown: Sacramento, California

Occupation: Operations Manager

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Day 2 Grand Prix Santa Clara 2018

What format and deck did you play and why?

Legacy, Turbo Depths. It's fast, matches are short, and I get tired easily.

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Sejiri Steppe

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

We were all positive and honest. They helped with my jangled nerves. How can you ask me to choose just one particular moment?

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

I get to go to Minneapolis with my two buddies!


Name: "The" Isaac Sears

Age: 30

Hometown: Santa Rosa, California

Occupation: Student

Previous Magic accomplishments:

2015 WMC Semifinalist

2015 Grand Prix Quarterfinalist

What format and deck did you play and why?

T2

Moist Jund

Best deck by far (thanks VD)

[Standard]

[Four-Color Energy]

[I felt it had the best match-ups against the expected field (thanks, Vidianto Wijaya)]

What card surprised you the most this weekend?

Captain Lannery Storm that somebody was playing.

How did working with your teammates help you in the tournament? Was there a particular moment that stands out from this weekend?

It didn't.

Staying alive at 1 life versus Temur, then ultimating a Nicol Bolas, God Pharaoh to win.

What does this Top 4 mean to you?

Pro Tour, a second chance at gravy, $$.

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