TOP 8 PROFILES

Posted in Event Coverage on December 1, 2014

By Wizards of the Coast

After many rounds of Swiss and some great games of Magic, the Top 8 for Grand Prix San Antonio is set! Learn more about this event’s Top 8 competitors, their history at the top tables, and more by taking a look through the Top 8 profiles.


Angel Solache

Age: 24
Hometown: Houston, TX
Occupation: Salesman

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Won FNM x3

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Abzan because it's good

What are your best and worst matchups?
Mardu is the worst; Red-Green Monsters is a good matchup

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Brimaz, King of Oreskos

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
Play another Brimaz

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Christmas


Orry Swift

Age: 27
Hometown: Houston, TX
Occupation: Student

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 25 Pro Tour San Diego, 3 Pro Tours

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Blue-White Heroic, because Ronny Alvarado told me to

What are your best and worst matchups?
Best - people with green cards. Worst - people without green cards.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Gods Willing

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
Maindeck the Lagonna-Band Trailblazers

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Summer


Larry Li

Age: 18
Hometown: Tulsa, OK
Occupation: Student

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
None

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Jeskai. The deck has a lot of game against almost every deck.

What are your best and worst matchups?
Best - Mardu. Worst - Sidisi Whip.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Dig Through Time

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
None. It's perfect.

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Sure.


Albert Ake

Age: 24
Hometown: Fayetteville, NC
Occupation: UPS

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
None

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Sidisi Whip, because it has a great match up against the most popular decks.

What are your best and worst matchups?
Best - Mardu. Worst – Blue-Black Control.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Hornet Queen

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
Take out all three Thoughtseize for a 24th land and two Nyx Weaver. Thoughtseize doesn't really help the deck's strategy.

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Thanksgiving


Randall Gay

Age: 25
Hometown: Houston, TX
Occupation: Digital Marketing Professional

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Day 2 Pro Tour Khans of Tarkir

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Abzan Midrange - I am comfortable with this style of deck, it has very few bad matchups, and Siege Rhino.

What are your best and worst matchups?
Best – White-Blue Control. Worst - Reanimator.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Siege Rhino

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
I would like a maindeck answer to Hornet Queen—maybe Bile Blight, and I'd like to try Whip of Erebos.

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Festivus - for the rest of us.


Jeremy Frye

Age: 22
Hometown: College Station, TX
Occupation: Texas A+M student

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 8ed PTQs

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Temur Monsters. I love the color combination and thought it was a powerful deck.

What are your best and worst matchups?
Best - Any control deck. Worst - Green Devotion decks.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Stubborn Denial

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
I would take out the Temur Ascendency for a Temur Charm. The Ascendency only helps already-good matchups.

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Christmas


Ryan Scullin

Age: 24
Hometown: Narragansett, RI
Occupation: (F)unemployed

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 33 Grand Prix Chicago

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Mardu Midrange. I had the most experience with it, and Tymaret, the Murder King and Bloodsoaked Champion weren't good enough.

What are your best and worst matchups?
Best - UW Heroic. Worst - Whip of Erebos decks.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Tie between Crackling Doom and Hushwing Gryff.

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
Find room in the sideboard for Liliana Vess. You lose midrange mirrors to having fewer/worse cards, and Chandra rarely does anything the turn she comes down.

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Right!


Gareth Aye

Age: 24
Hometown: Knoxville, TN
Occupation: Dad, Software Engineer at Mozilla Firefox

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
2 PTQ Top 8s, Top 64 at JSS Championship 2005, Top 16 at Tri-State Regionals 2004

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Blue-Red Aggro. I thought Red would be well-positioned for Game Ones, and that doing something different with the transformational sideboard would cause some opponents to mis-sideboard.

What are your best and worst matchups?
Not totally sure. I get uncomfortable when I see Whip of Erebos.

What card, in the maindeck or sideboard, won you the most matches this weekend?
Goblin Rabblemaster

What changes would you make to your deck and why?
Not sure.

What's the best American holiday? [Hint: It's probably Thanksgiving, right?]
Thanksgiving! I cooked it this year for my family!


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