I played Gabsolade teching out one Absol for an Unown G. (I never used the G all day long) First round: Devan H. from Louisiana (Gardylade variant, plox I think) I get a crazy good start being able to Pyschic Lock T2. He keeps being able to recycle his Ralts back to make me earn the win. 1-0 Second round: Roy R. from Oklahoma (Gardylade variant) Young Old Man or Old Man Jr. as we call him behind his back. Roy and I go back and forth until the moment of truth comes. I can take one of two paths: 1 - candy up to a Gallade, flip over my four remaining prizes leaving him with a one, psychic energy equipped Gardy and a bare Ralts OR B - candy up to Gardevoir and Psychic Lock him. He only had one out of his four remaining prizes left unflipped, so Gardy could be the right way to go, but Gallade would leave him practically energy-less. I spend way too much time agonizing over it until he finally tells me that I just need to decide. I went with Gallade starting the downward spiral that would end in my defeat. I was just sure Roy would have found some way to cream me if I had left his Gallade out there. I wish I could go back in time and play that one the other way just to see how it would have gone. I’m pretty sure he would have been able to out-Lock me in the end, but it keeps eating me up inside. 1-1 Third round: Brent S. from Louisiana (I think it’s called Arithmetic: Cresselia, Gyardos, Crawdant ex) Sometimes I think the Spazz-man exists just to knock me out of these tourneys. We start Magikarp v. Ralts. He makes a critical error early in the match by forgetting to Warp Point my energy laden Ralts back to the bench before he Wagers. I win at RPS, and that puts me an energy up with all the momentum. I repeatedly Psychic Lock him to the point of extinction then clean up with Gallade. He had his Lv. X prized, so he was really up against it. I’m so tickled to have beaten Brent I honestly feel that I could finish 2-5 and be happy. Fourth round: Jorel K. aka Father of Cal-el, or The Champ (Exploud w/ Claydol) Whismur v. Absol start, I’m Baleful Wind-ing away junk and he’s Mumbling me when he’s not flipping tails on Uproar. Finally he gets a Sentret and Gropes. The moment of truth arrives for this match. My Jedi senses are telling me that he is ready to go. He has a six-card hand that he refuses to look at denying me the opportunity to use any mind tricks on him. I then proceed to pull off the ‘Wind of the day by discarding a Celio’s followed by his Furret. I believe his line was “You did NOT just do that!” Just to rub a little bantha fodder in his face, when he’s finally able to get a Furret and Keen Eye what he needs to get going and maybe turn the match around, I Wager away his hand and win the RPS before I K.O. his Furret leaving him with two Whismur equipped with one fire energy and a cessation crystal each to go with his three-card hand. That had to sting. 3-1 Fifth round: Rick L. from Louisiana, aka Rocket Man (Magmortar) I wish this one was as close as Rick’s descriptions and the fact that we timed out would indicate, but the truth is that I was consistently behind throughout the match. After we signed the slip he let me play him out just to see that I really didn’t have it this time. We were pretty even until I finally lost my Gardy and couldn’t Telepass or Lock him any more. It was a pretty thorough beating. 3-2 Sixth round: Professor Fish (Marmolade) Danny picked me as his dark horse for the tourney, so you figure he would tank to me what with this being an elimination match and all...no dice. I was still licking my wounds from Rick and just couldn’t get anything going. Between playing and Telepassing Wagers we must have played RSP about a dozen times. It was only the fact that he consistently rolled a “three” on his sleep checks that let this match go on. We timed out with him way ahead; he let me play it out for grins, but he finally woke up, and I couldn’t come back to get him. At 3-3 I know I’m out of the money. Now I just want to finish with a winning record, so I can enjoy my victories over Brent and Jorel on the ride home. Seventh round: Rose B. (Lucario/Golem/Claydol) When she needed Lucario, she got Golem, when she needed Golem, she got Claydol. By the time she finally got a Lucario she didn’t have any energy. I felt sorry for her. 4-3 A winning record in a tourney stacked with the best players in the region playing decks honed to perfection is a good day any way you slice it. Thanks to Team Cook for another fabulously run tournament. They had a short staff who spread themselves superbly making it seem like you were never more than a few steps away from a judge or a runner. The deck checks were quick, and nobody wound up with a 66-card deck this time. Standings and pairings were quickly posted. I hope we treated the locale well enough that they will have us back there for a tourney next season.