Mike Pustilnik is a consummate professional player, having played in almost every event. He is the only player to have won a Grand Prix (two), and Pro Tour (one), and a Masters event (one). He came into the event with three byes and stands at 5 – 1. He has a White/Green deck with a splash of Red for removal. It features Exalted Angel as its power card.
Toby Wachter is known as a writer for Sideboard.com, but he takes the opportunity to play the occasional event. An event at Neutral Ground featuring drafts of Masques block followed by Invasion block followed by Odyssey block got him enough rating points for two byes. He has played in several pro tours over the years, and has had success in Junior Pro Tours. This is the first feature match he has played in since 1999. His deck is a Red/Green machine, featuring a bunch of big green men backed by Slice and Dice.
As they sat down, they wondered why more events couldn’t be held in New York City and Mikey P came out firing:
“Here’s where I get revenge for all those horrible things you wrote about me.” Mikey P
“But they’re all true.” Toby
Toby won the die roll and chose to play.
Wachter led with two lands, but he failed to play a third.
“This is payback for all the times I hoped people would get poor draws so the matches would end sooner.” Toby
Mikey P didn’t hold back, summoning a turn two Wirewood Elf, ramping him up to a turn three Dive Bomber. The bomber started attacking, and a Glowering Rogon, amplified with a Berserk Murlodont and Krosan Vorine, joined it. Mikey P’s big green men just proved to be too much for Toby, as all he was able to muster was a couple of morphs before packing them in.
Mikey P – 1, Wachter – 0
Toby chose to play and this time did have a turn three land. Unfortunately, he had no turn three play to go with it. Mikey P did have a turn three morph to start things up.
Toby summoned a Krosan Vorine turn four and happily traded it with Mikey P’s turn four Aven Redeemer.
Mikey P kept attacking with his morph and summoned a second, following that with a Glowering Rogon, amplified for one.
Toby chose this moment to cast Slice and Dice, clearing out all of Mikey’s men, save the 5/5 Rogon. One of the morphs was revealed to be the Exalted Angel, but Mikey lacked the second plains to unmorph it.
“What can I say, I’m a man of the cloth.” Reverend Toby Wachter
Mikey P drew and played his second plains, attacked and summoned a Berserk Murlodont, which Wachter tried to stop with a Wirewood Savage and Symbiotic Elf.
The Symbiotic Elf was solved with Oblation, though, and the Wirewood Savage was forced to chump block the Glowering Rogon as the Muldorant brought Toby to four life.
All Toby could do was summon a Glowering Rogon of his own, amplifying it for one, leaving up a forest. Mikey attacked into that board with both of his creatures, and Wachter revealed his plan. He cast Vitality Charm to make a 1/1 Insect to chump block the Rogon, freeing up his own Rogon to kill off Mikey P’s Muldorant.
On his turn, Toby summoned a Needleshot Gourna and thought about attacking.
“Lets see if I have any balls… Go.” Toby
“You just answered your own question.” Mikey P
Wachter spent four straight turns without drawing land, instead just casting large man after large man. Eventually the tide proved too great for Mikey P to manage and the second game went to Wachter.
Mikey P – 1, Wachter – 1
Knowing about the Exalted Angel, Toby chose to sideboard in black for a Cruel Revival, sacrificing mana consistency for some solution to the angel. Knowing he was going to draw first helped that option somewhat.
Mikey P started off with a mulligan. His seven-card hand had the Exalted Angel, but it had only one forest for land. His six-card hand was only slightly better. It had Renewed Faith, a Secluded Steppe, and four other lands.
“I know what it means when you show your hand to the feature match writer. It means it’s awful and you’re looking for them to attribute it to bad draws.” Toby Wachter
Toby had the first spell of the game with his turn three morph. It was met with Mikey P’s Krosan Vorine. Toby just kept summoning guys, casting a side boarded Nantuko Husk, a Charging Slateback, and a Wirewood Savage in succession.
The Charging Slateback traded with Mikey P’s Barkhide Mauler, and the game reached a standstill. Both players could draw nothing but land while Pustilnik’s board of Krosan Vorine and Stoic Champion stared down Wachters’ Wirewood Savage and Nantuko Husk. Neither was willing to make any trades.
Eventually, Toby drew into a Krosan Vorine of his own and drew a card off of Wirewood Savage. This led him into a chain of beasts, topped off with a Tribal Forcemage to push lethal damage through.
Toby Wachter defeated Mike Pustilnik 2-1