Home > 2023/02 TEAM YCS Las Vegas, NV, Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series > Top 16 Feature Match: Charley Futch vs. Stephen Eichelberger

Top 16 Feature Match: Charley Futch vs. Stephen Eichelberger

February 19th, 2023

We’re officially in the Top Cut! Charley Futch is no stranger to this level of competition, being a Dragon Duel World Champion, as well as finishing in the Top Cut of multiple YCS events. His opponent Stephen Eichelberger is looking to etch his name in the history of the game himself, and it’s anyone’s guess who will win, it’s time to Duel!

Duel 1

Futch started off with a hand of Branded Retribution, Branded Opening, Fusion Deployment, Blazing Cartesia, the Virtuous, and Fallen of Albaz. Futch started by activating Fusion Deployment and revealed Granguignol the Dusk Dragon to get another Blazing Cartesia to the field, following up with Branded Opening discarding Retribution to Summon
Aluber the Jester of Despia. Aluber then got him his Branded Fusion, which he activated sending Fallen of Albaz and Dark Magician!

The Bystial Lubellion was Summoned discarding the Cartesia in hand, sending itself and Dark Magician back for Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon! Cartesia was activated and fused to make Granguignol the Dusk Dragon, and then Retribution was banished to add back Branded Opening. In the End Phase Albion the Branded Dragon Set a copy of Branded in Red from Futch’s Deck, Cartesia was added back to hand, ending an incredible turn.

Eichelberger was up activating Runick Destruction, targeting Futch’s facedown Branded In Red, which was chained adding Aluber to hand. Futch lost Branded Lost and Dark Magician, amongst others. Runick Slumber was activated next to Special Summon Hugin the Runick Wings! Hugin’s effect was activated discarding The Winged Dragon of Ra – Sphere Mode and adding a copy of Runick Fountain to Eichelberger’s hand. Fountain was placed on the field and Futch allowed it, holding his negation as long as possible. Runick Freezing Curses was used to negate Granguignol the Dusk Dragon, and Futch lost 3 more cards. Runick Fountain’s effect was activated, and when Futch negated it, Hugin saved the card from destruction. Pot of Desires was activated next getting
Eichelberger 2 more cards before activating Messenger of Peace, setting a facedown and passing play back to Futch.

Futch drew Tri-Brigade Mercourier for turn, and in the Draw Phase Eichelberger activated Rivalry of Warlords! Futch considered his plays for a moment before deciding to allow it to resolve. Futch Special Summoned Blazing Cartesia, the Virtuous since all his monsters were Spellcaster Types and passed play.

Eichelberger drew for turn, paid his 100 Life Point toll to the Messenger of Peace, and activated Pot of Duality in his main phase adding Runick Tip! Tip was activated, declaring his intent to add a Runick Spell, but was met with Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon’s negation effect. Eichelberger used a second Runick Tip, adding Runick Freezing Curses, and used Runick Fountain to place 2 Tips and Destruction back, getting 3 fresh cards and setting 2 before passing play to Futch.

Futch drew Branded Opening and passed, in the End Phase Eichelberger flipped There Can Be Only One as well! Futch sent Blazing Cartesia and Granguignol the Dusk Dragon to the Graveyard and added back Cartestia. Freezing Curses was used to Summon Hugin again, and 3 Spell Cards were recycled to get Eichelberger 3 more cards.

Eichelberger drew for turn and paid 100, passing turn to Futch.

Futch was up and drew Despian Tragedy, and activated Dragoon to destroy Hugin, which sent itself back to the Extra Deck before passing.

Eichelberger drew and in the Main Phase activated Duality grabbing Runick Golden Droplet! Golden Droplet was used next, drawing Futch a card and banishing 4 more from his Deck. Fountain targeted the Golden Droplet and gave Eichelberger another card, passing play to Futch.

Futch drew Aluber for turn, contemplating what to do in this situation, ultimately passing.

Eichelberger drew, and in his Main Phase activated Freezing Curses to Special Summon Hugin once more, using Fountain to try and recycle the Freezing Curses and draw another card, passing play.

Futch drew Branded Expulsion for turn, and with a sigh, set 2 facedown cards and passed turn. In the End Phase Eichelberger used Runick Destruction to target a facedown to destroy, Dragoon attempted to negate, and was met by Skill Drain! Futch lost 4 more cards and Fountain shuffled back 2 Spells to give him more draws. When asked his Deck count remaining, Futch confirmed it was 7.

In the main phase, Runick Tip was activated to add, and Futch used Dragoon to negate it, Chaining Book of Eclipse, allowing it to resolve despite Skill Drain! In the End Phase Hugin was flipped up and Eichelberger drew again thanks to its effect.

Futch drew Albion, and in the Draw Phase Eichelberger used Runick Tip, adding Runick Destruction, and that was enough for Futch to concede!

(During that time, one of Futch’s teammates secured their win, taking some pressure off him.)

Duel 2

Futch was up first, with a hand of Foolish Burial, 2 Branded Fusions, Aluber the Jester of Despia, and Branded Retribution. His turn began with Aluber being Summoned, adding Branded Lost to hand. Next, Branded Lost was activated and followed by Foolish Burial. Futch sent Despian Tragedy to the Graveyard, adding Ad Libitum of Despia with its effect. Branded Fusion was used next sending Fallen of Albaz alongside Dark Magician again, Summoning Lubellion the Searing Dragon. Lubellion discarded Ad Libitum as Chain Link 1, and Chain Link 2 was Branded Lost adding Blazing Cartesia, the Virtuous. The Lubellion ultimately Summoned Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon again and Cartesia was Special Summoned and using her effect, Futch Summoned Granguignol the Dusk Dragon sending Albion the Shrouded Dragon to the Graveyard. Futch set 1 card facedown, and in the End Phase Albion set Branded in Red, then Cartesia added herself back to the hand.

Eichelberger was up and kicked things off with Lava Golem! Then Runick Tip was activated to search for a copy of Runick Destruction. Destruction was activated, targeting Branded in Red, to which Futch added Ad Libitum of Despia back to hand and Fusion Summoned Guardian Chimera using Lava Golem and 2 in hand monsters! In a new chain, Ad Libitum Summoned Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon, Branded Lost added Cartesia, but Guardian Chimera couldn’t be used due to there being no cards on Eichelberger’s field. Runick Fountain was activated next, followed by Runick Dispelling to Summon, but Branded Retribution Tributed Guardian Chimera to negate that! Play went over to Futch.

Futch drew Super Polymerization for turn, and activated Branded Retribution adding back Red to hand, Cartesia was Summoned, and Branded Fusion was activated to which Eichelberger had enough and we’re going to Duel 3!

Duel 3

With a fist bump of good sportsmanship Eichelberger was up! Futch drew a hand of Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring, Fusion Deployment, Branded Fusion, and Book of Eclipse.

Eichelberger started by playing Pot of Duality and grabbed Rivalry of Warlords, then Messenger of Peace was activated, and Eichelberger set 4 to pass play over.

Futch drew Branded Lost for turn and activated it then used Branded Fusion! In response, Eichelberger used Runick Destruction to destroy the Branded Lost and banished 4 from Futch’s Deck. Fallen of Albaz and Dark Magician to make Lubellion the Searing Dragon again, on its effect in which he discarded ad lib, Stephen chained Rivalry.  Futch was forced into using Albaz, but Futch’s teammates secured the Match, meaning they’re moving on to Top 8! Futch conceded the match, knowing the result ultimately didn’t matter and wanting to move on to the next round as quickly as possible.