Where are you from, and how did you get into the Pokémon TCG?
I am from Rhode Island. I started playing in 2007 when my dad gave me a Pokémon starter kit for Christmas. After that, I played at a local league casually for about three years until I became competitive. I won the US National Championship in 2012 as a Junior and also got second at Worlds the same year.
What's the basic strategy of the deck, and why did you choose it for this tournament?
The goal of my deck is to set up a Drampa GX turn two so I can attack with Berserk for (hopefully) 180 on a GX, then use Garbodor during the late game. I played the deck because it was the one deck I was comfortable with going into this mostly unknown metagame.
What are some other important cards in the deck?
Playing three Tapu Lele GX helped me get whatever supporter I need to react to my opponent, and not playing Shaymin EX in my deck helped me in the mirror so I would not have a Pokémon that they can Lysandre up for an easy two prizes. Finally, playing Delinquent helped me in the mirror because I can run my opponent out of cards in hand, giving me more time to set up.
Shaymin EX has been almost universally played ever since it came out-what was it like not using it?
During certain scenarios at the tournament I wished I played it so I could draw more cards after playing my supporter, but overall it still seemed better not to use it.
How did the finals play out?
In the finals I played against Joey with his Metagross GX deck that was built specifically to beat Drampa GX/Garbodor. While that is a disadvantage, we had played in Swiss so we each knew what to expect for the match-up. The first game I was able to disrupt him and take enough knockouts to be ahead when he finally set up. Game two I was not able to do that and he crushed me. In game three he dead drew and had no bench, and I was able to knock out his only Pokémon.
Anything you might change if you used this deck again?
I would take out Sudowoodo, since I barely used it all weekend, and add a second Field Blower or a different Pokémon because it is useful to have cards that are not items so you can safely Ultra Ball away them in the mirror.