Adaptive Meta Call Takes Team CGC Cards to Top Cut at the 2024 Pokémon Regional Championships in Sacramento

Posted on 10/19/2023

Azul Garcia Griego gets his groove back with his first Top Cut finish of the season.

After making a drastic adjustment to their game plan, Team CGC Cards stormed their way through the competition at the SAFE Credit Union Convention Center for the 2024 Pokémon Regional Championships in Sacramento. With four team members in attendance, each competitor took home Championship Points, becoming one step closer to the 2024 World Championships in Hawaii.

Despite already having a 2024 World Championships invite, Azul Garcia Greigo (11/3/2) didn't rest on his laurels and led the team with a 7th place overall finish. He represented Team CGC Cards in both Round 4 and Round 15 of the competition, which livestreamed on the official Pokémon YouTube Channel. Caleb Gedemer (9/4/2) placed 61st, and Grant Manley placed in the top 256 without a Day 2 berth. The youngest team member, Remi Lorenz, advanced to the top 16 of the Seniors division. Unfortunately, Kidd Starck was unable to attend this event.

Click images to enlarge.

After back-to-back regional losses for the deck in Pittsburgh and Peoria, Team CGC Cards opted to leave Gardevoir ex at the testing table and switch to the Aqua Storm Kyogre variant of the ever-pervasive Lost Zone Box strategy. Although Gardevoir ex is regarded by many as the top deck of the format, its slower nature of play leads to many unresolved games and “ties kept us from performing up to our expectations” in previous events, explains Caleb. Not alone in their meta-adaptive decision, assorted Lost Zone Box builds led the Sacramento Regional Championships in popularity, being the only deck to increase in its meta share, growing from 14% of the playing field in Day 1 to 22% in Day 2.

Flying under the radar at an 8% meta share for both Day 1 and Day 2, Colorless Lugia was able to avoid enough of its difficult Miraidon ex matchups to lock up 50% of Top Cut and ultimately take down the competition. Only time will tell what the meta will shift to for the next regional event in Lille, France, on October 21-22, 2023, or when Team CGC Cards returns back to action at the 2024 Toronto Regional Championships (Canada) on October 27-29, 2023.

Caleb Gedemer (left) and Azul Garcia Griego (right).

Speaking on the team’s Sacramento performance, Azul states, “We went back to one of the decks we played a lot last season... Even though I did get top 8 I want to try and push for us to replicate some of our more dominant tournament performances from last season where we had three of us in the top 8.”

Team CGC Cards was assembled by Danny Oesterreich in 2022, and is comprised of seasoned players Azul Garcia Griego, Caleb Gedemer, Kidd Starck, Grant Manley and Remi Lorenz. The team will compete next at the 2024 Toronto Regional Championships, at the Enercare Center, in Toronto, Canada on October 27-29, 2023.

Please join us in wishing the team the best of luck throughout the upcoming season and keep an eye out for new updates on the team’s performance by following their Instagram @teamCGCcards and the CGC Cards social channels, @CGCcards. You can also watch the players do battle by checking out the events live on the official Pokémon YouTube and Twitch channels.

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