Rahizzle’s Virginia States Report

50states.comHey 6P community, I am here today to tell you guys how my Virginia State Championship run went, and what decks I saw there.

The morning of the tournament, I built ZekEels for the first time and I had never played it before, but I was so confident that Durant would be the best deck that I didn’t want to use anything else. However, I thought about what to play on the very long, hour-and-a-half car ride there.

Once there, I saw that 90% of the field was playing ZekEels and there was some Durant, Chandelure, and CMT lingering, but mostly people were playing ZekEels. I made a last-minute audible, sleeved up ZekEels, and got deck checked with a deck I had never played before. I was so nervous and kept wondering why I did that, but I am glad I did.

There were 93 Masters, so we got 7 rounds and cut to top 16. We got these really cool commemorative dice that I thought were amazing. Pairings went up and I was ready to roll.

Round 1 vs Ben Potter (The Great White Hope)

He mulligans and shows me a Vileplume UD and Tropical Beach, so I know what I’m up against. He opens Oddish UD to my Tynamo and I go first. I use Level Ball to get Tyrogue HS, play PlusPower, and donk him.


Round 2 vs Sam Estes (ZekEels)

I had the game from the get-go because he didn’t start too well. I began sweeping with Zekrom BLW and Thundurus EPO, and dropped a Mewtwo EX to win.


Round 3 vs Michael Pramawat (ZekEels)

I sit down and I know this match is going to be tough no matter what. We setup and throughout this game we each took 3 Prizes with Tyrogue. He flips tails on a crucial turn where I needed his Tyrogue awake to win the game the turn, especially since I had garbage in my hand. He wakes up the next turn and uses N to put me at 1 card and him at 3. I get an N myself off the 1 card.

He retreats and kills my Thundurus. I draw, attach, and use N. I draw into another energy, but I misplay here by Dynamotor-ing to Zekrom instead of my lone Eel, because I should have expected a potential Catcher. I use Outrage with my Zekrom that already had 80 on it to his Mewtwo. He topdecks Dual Ball for a 2nd Mewtwo, retreats, and KOs my Zekrom.

I draw and use Outrage with Zekrom. He topdecks Catcher to bring my Eel up and hits it for 40. It already had 30 on it from Tyrogue, so it had 70 on it now. I draw and topdeck Catcher, use it to bring up his Eel, and I attach to my active Eel and pass. He topdecks the DCE to retreat and win the game. It was the 2nd most exciting game of the day; most exciting in Swiss.


Round 4 vs Johnny Rabus (ZekEels)

I walk into this game nervous, but ready to go. I don’t remember all the details, but I here’s how we finished. He had 3 Prizes left and I had 2; he had a Zekrom-EX on bench with 120 damage on it, and an active Zekrom. He Knocked Out my Zekrom and I promoted Tyrogue. I PONT’d and I have Mewtwo on my bench with DCE, and luckily I drew into 3-of my 4 Catcher on that PONT to win the game.


Round 5 vs Westin Lee (ZekEels)

I’ve known Westin for a while now, so this game was more for fun than serious. I outsped him and took all my prizes when he had only taken 3. I misplayed for some reason, assuming that Mewtwo EX was RDL and I put way too much energy on it to take a prize, and thought it was GG (good game). But he dropped his own Mewtwo and killed mine, and even though I had the response, it was a crucial misplay nonetheless.


Round 6 vs William Copeland (ZekEels)

Plain and simple, he didn’t play Mewtwo so I swept him with mine.


Round 7 vs Alex Lear (Durant)

I go first and Charge with Thundurus because my hand is garbage. He goes gets 4 Durant and has no energy so he passes. I go, attach, and use N because I know he has Twins in his hand. I bench Zekrom and 2 Tynamo and KO his active.

He promotes a Durant, attaches Special Metal, and Twins for Revive and Eviolite. I go drop double PlusPower, attach, use Level Ball to get both my Eels out, and knockout his active.

From here it was a landslide victory for me. He played Skyarrow Bridge down and whenever he catchered my Eels, that only helped me retreat.

[Editor’s Note: By Eels I think Rahul means Tynamos.]


I find out I’m going into cut as the 4th seed, and Curran Hill’s crazy Terrakion NVI/Exp. Share deck is doing so well, he went in as the 3rd seed. I learned I was playing a friend from league in the top 16, and knew that we would have fun while we played.

Then I ordered the 2nd cheapest thing on the hotel menu for dinner; it was a massive sandwich for $11. So worth it though, because it helped me keep up my energy for the final games. At this point the three Seniors in my car are all in Top 8, 2 of them playing against each other. For those of you who know me personally and are reading this, it was Jimmy vs Jimmy. I then get called over to my table to sit down and shuffle up.

Top 16 vs Bryan H (ZekEels)

This guy was the nicest opponent I had all day. We were joking around and had an overall good time.

Game 1

He started well and proceeded to sweep me, but I kept playing to see what was in his deck. (0-1)

Game 2

I open better. I remember he Portrait-ed twice with Smeargle UD in one turn for 2 Junipers, and used one of his own, but whiffed on resources to thin my prize lead. (1-1)

Game 3

We both have the most horrendous starts of our lives, but I open Zekrom to his Shaymin and begin attaching manually. By the time he got Mewtwo out, I had already taken 4 Prizes and he Knocked Out my Zekrom for his first. I drop the Mewtwo with PlusPower and DCE for the game. (2-1)


Top 8 vs Westin Lee (ZekEels)

I meet my friend Westin again, and he is coming into this game beating the most awesome person I know, LJ Widget (who on a side note elegantly donked him twice with Tyrogue). LJ and I were playing almost identical lists, so I was worried Westin found a way to beat me.

Game 1

We both started well, but I used Tyrogue to take 3 Prizes on his Tynamos and he had no response. (1-0)

Game 2

I had a rocky start, but discovered that he wanted to initiate the Mewtwo wars, so I calmly responded with my own and his other Mewtwo was prized, so he had no response to my Mewtwo rampage. Fun game with a good friend. (2-0)


Top 4 vs Michael Pramawat (ZekEels)

Game 1

This game went down to the wire. I had a Mewtwo prized – my last prize – so I couldn’t respond to his Mewtwo. He took 4 Tyrogue prizes. (0-1)

Game 2

We both opened well, but I opened better and I used Tyrogue to take a bunch of prizes of my own to win this game fast. (1-1)

Game 3

This game came down to the wire as well with him needing to take 2 Prizes and me needing to take one and he uses N. I draw into a Juniper, and he takes a hit on me. I draw into energy and I have garbage in my hand after the Juniper, so I Catcher the Eel and hope for 2 more turns in hopes of a Mewtwo. He draw and kills my Tyrouge and we are both at 1 Prize left and he has an active Mewtwo with 2 energy on it.

Did I mention he N’s me to one again? I have Eelektrik and Dual Ball in hand. I use Dual Ball and get Mewtwo and I use double Dynamotor and retreat into Mewtwo and hit his Mewtwo for 160. I may be wrong here, but according to onlookers he topdecks the energy to win the game. Fun and really close once again. I’ll get my revenge at the next one. (1-2)


In the end, I finished 3rd place and got an awesome looking trophy thing. I got my 18 packs, opened just 2 there, and I got myself my first Mewtwo EX (I was borrowing 2). The 3 Seniors in my car were Jimmy McClure who took 1st, Dean Nezam who took 2nd, and Jimmy Pendarvis who finished in the top 8.

I got 6 Championship Points which isn’t bad for this only being my 3rd Masters tournament, but I only have 11 now which means unless I win the next two States, Regionals, and a bunch of Battle Roads, Worlds is probably out of the question for me.

I met a lot of great people there and if I met you and talked to you, just post something below like, “Dude that was a sick play in Round X.” I would also like to thank the amazing judging staff and David Tuskey for putting everything together so smoothly. I thought it was done very well.

Final shoutout goes to Tim Copeland and Javier Sanyer for watching our intense game in Top 4 and not missing a beat, even with the fast play that we both did. Thanks to all you guys and Delaware is what I will hopefully be conquering next week. Until then, Rahul “Rahizzle Swaglicious Bambino” Reddy is out. (Credits to Jimmy Pendarvis for my 3 middle names.)

Reader Interactions

78 replies

  1. Jan Becker

    Nice Report!
    But i hope that weren’t Eelektriks with the SSkyarrow…
    But anyway i so want to see that Terrakion Build, but can’t seem to find it.

    • Rahul Reddy  → Jan

      It was eelektriks with the skyarrow, unfortunately he helped me a lot there. I think you could probably put together a terrakion deck, but try to use it in places where the meta is like 90% ZekEels, like VA

    • Will Skop  → Jan

      I’ve done some testing with Terrakion and I really like it so far. Here is my current list.

      Pokemon: 4
      4 Terrakion NVI

      I/T/S/S: 44
      4 Heavy Ball
      4 Juniper
      3 PONT
      2 Copycat
      3 N
      2 Lost Remover
      4 Crushing Hammer
      4 Exp Share
      2 Pokegear 3.0
      4 Catcher
      3 PlusPower
      4 Junk Arm
      3 Defender
      2 Revive

      Energy: 12
      8 Fighting
      4 Rescue

      • indercarnive  → Will

        no judge? i tried it out and loved it. and unlike durant this deck runs more hand regen cards and doesn’t rely off energy, revive every turn.

        • Will Skop  → indercarnive

          I prefer running N, it seems to fulfill the purpose of judge better. I’ve definitely been thinking about switch just as a one of (gotta love junk arm) for the sole purpose of countering catcher.

      • Jan Becker  → Will

        Any particular reason to play Defender over Eviolite?
        But i like the concept of the deck. Sounds fun to demolish Eels in my opinion and it see no real bad match-ups in this meta. Maybe ill try it a regionals in 2 weeks.

        • Will Skop  → Jan

          The deck is very fast, consistent, and overall a lot of fun. However, Exp. Share is a key part of the deck and the official ruling states that once you attach a tool to a pokemon, you cannot replace it until the pokemon holding the tool is knocked out. Therefore, eviolite puts a dent in the consistency of the deck and distracts from the main strategy. I find that defender works just as well. Hope that helps.

  2. Eli Norris

    Great article! I was there (long hair) playing Durant in top 4 against Terrakion and lost. I’m so peeved you got a Mewtwo in your packs, as I got Kyurem and Regigigas (sigh).

    • Rahul Reddy  → Eli

      Yeah, I was the loud one that could never be serious during a match, except for against Pram. I heard your game was close against Curran, good job man :) As soon as we heard you had lost game one me and Pram were like, “The mood of this table just got lower”

    • indercarnive  → theo

      4 terrakion, 3-4 exp share, 8-11 fighting, 2-4 search, 3-4 catcher. its got more room then friggen durant. and autowins zekeels.

        • indercarnive  → Will

          i run 4 but i guess if soemone wants to squeeze as much teching as possible in a list you can run 3.

  3. Adam Capriola

    Dude that’s crazy you never even played the deck before and got 3rd… you’ve got some skills Rahul! See you in Delaware.

  4. indercarnive

    Dang you pendarvis. now rahul is gonna go atround saying he’s rahizzle swaglicious bambino. Dang you. nice report. tyrouge is bossing. congrats for third. terrakion.dec FTW

  5. Bryan Hrbacek

    Rahul, you are too nice. Congrats on reaching the semifinals! I’m so jelly of your Moo2. You going to DE or MD states?


  6. bryracer

    Congrats on your 3rd place finish… I was there also at my first states tourney. My family had a representative in each level, juniors, seniors and masters.

    my juniors son finished 8th playing a zebstrika teched version of Zekeels, and my Seniors son ran Chandelure to not much success. And my inexperience during tournaments showed with a poor 3-4 showing for my first big tourney playing Zekeels as well.

    The most interesting deck i saw was the Ben Potter Deck, it was a close game, and pretty well thought out idea of moving damage to and from Regigigas and trainer locking with Vileplume. I think i faced 4 mirror matches and whoever got the better start ended up winning. I ended up only winning one of my mirror matches.

    I also must thank David Tuskey for doing an awesome job at hosting and coordinating tournaments in Virginia. We don’t know how good we have it. I had the pleasure of playing his son in a match and he was one of the nicest guys i played all day. In fact, everyone I played was really nice and cool… my kids and i had such a great time, we would love to go to more tournaments if they are all run as nicely as Virginia tournaments. I saw thetopcut.net was live video streaming the event.. how cool is that. I hope they post some of the battles on youtube!


      • bryracer  → Rahul

        I dont think i met you… i am new to the pokemon scene, and still feel a little bit like an outsider. I defintely am an outgoing person and enjoy most of the people i met at the VA states. I have a son in seniors (11) and a son in Juniors(7) .. both really young in their respective divisions. Both really like playing pokemon. If i take the boys to DE .. I will make a point to say hi.

      • Eli Norris  → bryracer

        I didn’t see any CMT at all in Masters, and certainly not in top 4 (and I think top 8 and 16 as well).
        There were at least 3 Durant in top 16 (including me).
        Top 4 was my Durant, Terrakion, and 2 Zekeels.

        So Durant did pretty well.

        • bryracer  → Eli

          yeah i guess i should have specified, i saw the CMT doing well in Seniors division, i don’t know how he finished but i think he was ranked 3rd going into Top Cut.

        • David  → bryracer

          would eels be any better than durant though i want to win. also i was thinking of using an anti eel deck would that be any better?

        • Rahul Reddy  → David

          Play a deck that you feel is comfortable to you, If you like Durant play it, if you like Zekeels Play it, if you cant decide flip a coin

        • David  → Rahul

          I’m down with all of them, which has the best chance in your opinion?

          Also do you think durant even has a chance against zekeels?

        • Eli Norris  → David

          If it is lone Zekrom against Durant, then it comes down to Crushing Hammer flips. If it is Zekrom + another random basic that you had in your opening hand, it depends on retreat cost or if you can draw Switches repeatedly and Crushing Hammer flips.

        • Roarkiller Master  → David

          Lol, using hammers on zekrom when you could plasma arrow him? I say leave the energy and just play catchers and hammers on the bench, then drop an N when he’s at least 3 prizes up and use plasma arrow.

          That’s how you play against zekrom.

        • Eli Norris  → David

          Don’t be an *** about it. I placed 4th at states with Durant, I must know something.

          If you Crushing Hammer early game, than you can prevent Bolt Strike as long as possible. Once Bolt Strike is set up you can N and Plasma Arrow, sure, but you can apply early game pressure by stalling with Catchers and Crushing Hammers. It’s not like your opponent is going to stop attaching electric energies to Zekrom just because you Crushing Hammered some away.

        • killerpotatoe  → Rahul

          Yo Rahul I just wanted to say two things, number 1 I didn’t get destroyed all three of them were close matches, and number two I am a huge fan man and I love your articles dude keep them up. Oh buy the way I saw you a ton at the VA states and I’ll see you at the Delaware state championships.

          P.S. I really hope you win and continue writing such amazing articles!

        • killerpotatoe  → bryracer

          Yo bryracer I’m Jonathan’s brother Alex unfortunately I did lose to Alex Hedge and came 6th or 7th but my list wasn’t fully prepared, but when I go to Delaware states this Friday I’m going to heat up the competition.

          p.s. I went 5-1 and beat Hedge in the last round of Swiss

          p.p.s. I’m really hoping for some good competition in Delaware

          p.p.p.s. my brother is arguably the best junior in Virginia and he is ranked number 37 in the U.S. and conveniently has 37 championship points.

          p.p.p.p.s. we loaned you guys tropical beaches.

      • indercarnive  → bryracer

        terrakion.dec obviously had the most success. i mean when 1 dude can go and be the only one playing a deck and win then the deck got some skittles. along with the player.

    • Rahul Reddy  → Ben

      Thanks :) U playing the same thing next week at DE? cuz I have loads of Moo2s now, I have 7 I can borrow and 1 I own, so I can prolly spot you some :)

  7. Mark Hanson

    Props to anyone taking top 4 at an event like states. Even crazier if you’d never played the deck before! But I lol’d/facepalmed when you said the SAB helped against the Durant match because you could retreat Eels easier. That’s some good luck that your opponent targeted eels without realizing why they were the best target! xD

  8. Grant Manley

    Hey congrats (and jealousy) for making Top 4 w/ a deck built right before!
    I thought the report was a little bland honestly and think it shouldn’t quite have +11 (and counting) yet.
    It wasn’t that bad and I’m not gonna rate it down but it just wasn’t that great for me to rate it up or think it deserves this rating. I think (just IMO) that tourney reports should come w/ a list of what you’re using.
    Also, Tyrogue?! There were that many people playing Tyrogue?! That thing is spiking in popularity again?
    I completely wrote it off do you think it really needs to be in Zekeel? I honestly have no idea and that’s kinda interesting. I would be jealous of your Mewtwo but I kinda feel good for you. It’s easy to fell good about someone pulling a Mewtwo once you already have pulled 1. You had a really good day man! You’re kinda lucky you didn’t face Curran’s deck.

  9. Adam Bigott

    I went 8-2, place third, got knocked out by Zek/Eels, and now have 11 CP too! It was just too weird not to mention.

  10. Martin Garcia

    Good job on the third place, but im a little saddedned to see so many “i ran mewtwo, he didnt/his were prized, so i win”

      • killerpotatoe  → Eli

        Hey what up Eli my buddy from league, so your telling me that Curran the Hill won the states with that Terrakion list. If you did a bit of researching then you would know that Curran won worlds for the juniors in 05 and came 4 for seniors in 08.

  11. Lee

    Mind-boggling that every deck you faced was Zekeels (except one Durant and one Truth w/ Regigigas). Seems only natural that a direct counter to an entire electric meta (pure Terrakion) won. Not to mention the Mewtwo tech as the make it or break it point. Does anyone feel like this is mayhaps a big problem with the current game right now or not so much?

    • Rahul Reddy  → Lee

      I dont think it is, because it was the first week of States people took the safe play and played Zekeel, Im sure more CMT and Durant will emerge the following weeks

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