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John Hoegerl


A senior newcomer to the 60 cards site, John Hoegerl, goes over how he made 2nd place at the recent Blue Ridge Cup tournament at the Virginia regionals using a surprising Giratina/Spread deck.

12/15/2018 by John Hoegerl

Hey 60 cards readers! What's up? I'm a Pokemon player in the senior division named John and in this article, I want to go over my 2nd place finish at the Roanoke regional cup out of 32 players. I used a surprising Giratina/Malamar/Spread deck at this tournament and the regional the day before. The deck wasn't very popular at all at the LAICs the week before, except for making 2nd place in the juniors division. The deck only made three spots in the top 64 for masters. Despite all of this, I (for some reason) decided to use the deck. I probably should have played something more mainstream like Buzzwole GX or Blacephalon GX, but I guess you can't really argue that much with a 2nd place cup finish.

The List

The weeks before the tournament, I worked hard to refine my list. The day before the Roanoke Regionals, I got it to a decent point and decided to go with it. I only made top 64 at the actual Regionals, though.

Here's the list.

Unique Additions

3 Marshadow; I'm not sure if I even think this was the right call, and many of my opponents were also amazed with how many Marshadow I played.  However,  I liked Marshadow as a card and didn't want to play Tapu Lele GX because I did not want to have to play a GX just so I can search for a supporter. They can clog your bench space, but I almost always had extra bench space room anyway

1 Onix; I liked Onix as a Zoroark GX slayer.  I considered putting Marshadow GX in the deck as an alternative Zoroark destroyer, but again, I didn't want many GXs. The Onix wasn't actually used in any of my cup battles, but I did end up using it in the actual regional.

1 Necrozma GX; Again, I didn't want many, if any, GXs in the deck, but I let Necrozma GX slide as it could be an alternate slayer of pretty much anything since it can hit for so much damage. Plus, Black Ray GX can turn the tide of games and make the non-GX Tapu Lele in this deck very useful.

2 Shrine of Punishment; I wanted three or more of this card in the deck, but I unfortunately couldn't find the space in the deck. Shrine of Punishment is a very good card in this deck, though, as it can help you get the perfect math on things such as a Blacephalon GX.

2 Escape Board/3 Spell Tag; In my earlier lists of the deck, I actually had four of each of these cards in the deck for extra consistency, but I had to take some out for extra space. Spell Tag is awesome for getting perfect math on things such as Blacephalon GX and Escape Board makes it so you can almost always consistently stream Giratina with that Distortion Door ability.

Cup Report

Despite having 32 seniors, the cup only had 4 best of one rounds + top cut of 8. Here is a quick round-by-round report of the tournament.

RD 1 (VS Buzzwole GX/Lycanroc GX/Alolan Ninetales GX) Loss

This match was extremely close. I didn't test very much against this deck but I realized that Alolan Ninetales can quite easily destroy my deck, especially when using Guzma on my benched Malamars. I had the Guzma in my hand to win, but he used Marshadow's ability, Let Loose, on me when I had it. I couldn't find it again even with my own Marshadows, so I lost, bringing me to the dreaded 0-1-0 start.

RD 2 (VS Mirror Match) Win

In order to even have a chance of making top cut, I would have to win the next three battles. In this mirror match my opponent just bricked very hard, bringing me to 1-1-0.

RD 3 (VS Blacephalon GX/Naganadel) Win

I believe that my deck's matchup against Blacephalon GX is very good. Plus, my opponent dead drew a bit, bringing me to a win and a record of 2-1-0.

RD 4 (VS Blacephalon GX/Naganadel) Win

I didn't realize it at the time, but this battle was against a top place finisher at the World Championships this year in the Juniors division. It was actually quite close of a game, but I had the Guzma so I won.

With a record of 3-1-0, I barely made it into the Top Cut and its best of three rounds. I was literally seed 8. :)

RD 5 (VS Ultra Necrozma GX/Malamar) WW

My deck quite easily destroyed my opponent's Ultra Necrozma deck. With spell tag, shrine of punishment, and Giratina's awesome attack, a deck like his just couldn't keep up with mine. I won both games very convincingly. 4-1-0

RD 6 (VS Shining Lugia/Malamar/Shrine) WLW

This battle was against a good friend of mine from league. She was rocking a Shining Lugia/Malamar deck, quite similar to my deck, except with a Lugia instead of a Giratina. I won Game 1 because she dead drew. Then, she won Game 2 because I dead drew. Finally, in Game 3 she played down a Shrine of Punishment and then proceeded to play down a Tapu Lele GX. I didn't play a GX the whole game, so she was hurt quite badly because of her own Shrine! I used my Tapu Koko a bunch during the game, eventually knocking out her Lele. Afterwards, there was no way she could respond so I took another game. 5-1-0

Finals (VS Buzzwole GX/Lycanroc GX/Alolan Ninetales GX) WLL

This was the same opponent from RD 1. I barely won game 1 thanks to an amazing Magical Swap by my non-GX Tapu Lele. Then Game 2 was barely won by him thanks to a Guzma. Afterwards, we didn't have enough time for a full 3rd Game, so it came down to whoever had taken the most prize cards, which was him.


I don't believe that the deck I used at this Cup is that strong, but if it faces the right matchups, it can easily do well. I wouldn't strongly recommend using this deck in your own tournaments, but it was a cool idea, nonetheless. My only two losses were against a very good player. Until next time, trainers


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