Two of the top players in the game, Invitational Competitor Brian Davis and National Champion Eugene Harvey faced off, with Eugene wanting a win to advance to the top 8 while Brian Davis would be happy with merely a draw.
This matchup favors Eugene Harvey's Timestretch deck over Brian Davis' black/blue Upheaval deck, combo against control. In most formats control beats combo, but in this block format, combo will usually be able to win because the combo deck in this case is able to generate an amazing amount of mana and lands and this mana advantage makes it difficult for the control deck to counter all the spells that it needs to.
Eugene started off winning the die roll and mulliganning. Brian played the first spell, Zombie Infestation and then on turn three he played Standstill. Brian then gathered up a bunch of the naked baby tokens he used for Zombie tokens. Both players were quiet and serious. Harvey decided to break the Standstill at the end of Brian's fourth turn. In this situation he couldn't wait as Brian could just make Zombies without casting a spell.
Two naked baby zombie tokens were put in the play area.
Eugene then played Compulsion, and Wished for Major Teroh. Brian kept attacking with his zombie tokens battering Eugene down to 9, while Eugene continued to activate his compulsion.
On the critical turn of the game, Eugene decided to play his Mirari's Wake leaving up enough mana to Syncopate one spell, and still having enough mana left over for one Moment's Peace. Brian tried to Circular Logic the Mirari's Wake, and it was Syncopated by Eugene. Brian made enough Zombie tokens to kill Eugene with one attack, and then untapped, and swung. Eugene with the last Forest untapped, made two green and cast Moment's Peace, but Brian had another Circular Logic. It's possible this could have been a bad judgement call by Eugene, as waiting for one or two more turns may have given him enough mana to play Mirari's Wake, protect it with Syncopate and then have enough mana to cast Moment's Peace twice in case one of them was countered, however, if Brian were only holding one Circular Logic (instead of the two he had) this approach would have given more time. A difficult decision, with Eugene wielding the most difficult to play deck in this block format.
1-0 advantage Brian Davis
Eugene added Envelops and Ray of Revelation while Brian Davis added practically his entire sideboard in order to take out most of his creature elim. Brian mulliganed and then Eugene led with a Krosan Verge.
On turn 3 Brian made Psychatog. On turn 4, Eugene cast Mirari's wake. In this type of situation, with no real threats on the table, and Eugene able to produce an enormous amount of mana, the game is practically won for Eugene.
On turn 5, Eugene wished for and cast Major Teroh. Brian Davis cast Cabal Therapy and in a nice play Eugene used the Major's ability in response to Cabal Therapy to kill Psychatog so the Cabal Therapy couldn't be flashed back. Brian missed with a guess of Time Stretch, and saw the Crush of Wurms in Eugene's hand. Eugene untapped, made three giant wurms, and then next turn attacked for the win.
Ten minutes were left in the round, and Eugene could only be happy with a win, while Brian would be happy just to draw.
On turn 2 Brian made a Zombie Infestation which died to Ray of Revelation. On turn 3, Brian made a Psychatog while Eugene made Compulsion on his turn. On the next turn Brian played Standstill.
Despite Brian having a creature on the board, with a Standstill, Eugene was in a good position here. Brian could only top deck cards, while Eugene could Compulsion up cards to get the best possible hand until he decided to break the Standstill. Harvey Compulsioned a few times, letting the Psychatog hit him, until he decided it was the right time to break Standstill. Harvey made sure to break it at a time that Brian would have more than seven cards in hand, negating some of the card advantage Standstill would have given him.
However, time was running out and in a desperate move Eugene tapped all of his mana to hard cast Crush of Wurms tapping nine lands. If had only more time, Eugene would have been in a wonderful position.
Brian cast Upheaval, happy to reset the game with Eugene tapped. Just then time was called, and Eugene extended the hand, offering a handshake for what would have to be a drawn game as you only get five extra turns.
Final Result: 1-1 draw