Face to Face Games Open Recap: Modern in Barrie


As the FacetoFaceGames.com Open Series travels the country from coast to coast we’ve started to see specific individuals become the stars of their regions. From Josh Breau out east to Kyle Gellert in the prairies, this country has shown us its rising stars with each passing weekend.

This past weekend it was Stephen Kerr who added his name to that list by taking down our Barrie, ON Modern Open with Azorius Control.

Now, if Kerr’s face looks familiar to you I wouldn’t be surprised. Just a few weeks back he lost in the finals of our most recent Toronto Open+ with the same Azorius Control deck.

That’s one trophy and back to back finals appearances with an extremely difficult to navigate deck in a wide open format like Modern. Quite the feat if you ask me.

Unsurprisingly, Kerr registered a very similar list to the one he had success with in Toronto featuring the cheeky maindeck Surgical Extraction that he’s added as a concession to the popularity of Dredge and Izzet Phoenix. Azorius Control is a deck many have advocated for if you’re looking to play fair in this world of graveyard-centric combo decks and Kerr is certainly making a case for its power. One notable addition to Kerr’s list was a sideboard copy of Cataclysmic Gearhulk as a hay-maker to bring in against the quickly surging Whir Prison deck.

Your Modern Open Top 8.

Kerr was able to defeat another repeat Top 8 competitor in Ben Lu in the finals who brought the same Amulet Titan deck that he recently Top 8’d another Toronto Open+ with. Lu has really started to make a name for himself in the Toronto Magic scene and seems to be in the elimination rounds every weekend playing an extremely challenging deck.

Rounding out our Top 8 was Jason Qian playing Izzet Phoenix, Andy Liang with Golgari Midrange, Caleb Keung sporting a wild Sultai Midrange deck, two copies of Grixis Death’s Shadow and Thomas Ainsborough playing Humans.

It’s worth nothing that Grixis Death’s Shadow seems to show up in multiples in all of our Ontario Open Top 8s. I think this is one of the decks to beat so make note before you come out to our May 11 London Open.

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In addition to all the action in our main event, we had players battling all day long in both Commander Pods and constructed queues. Commander in particular was booming. A total of 11 pods fired over the course of the day.

Congratulations again to our champion Stephen Kerr from everyone at Face to Face Games! Additionally, we’d like to extend our thanks to both our Open Series sponsor — Ultimate Guard — who hooked up everyone in the Top 8 with some awesome swag and to our amazing judge staff! The next stop on the series is coming up in Kelowna, B.C. on April 13 where we’ll be hosting a Modern Open. Make sure to pre-register and we’ll see you out west!