Carthage Awaits Syracuse Again
Andy Latto vs Emily Wu. She later
won her first game.
Michael Sosa hands John Gitzen II
his first loss in Round 4.
Pat Neary and James DuBose vacation
in the Med.
Michael Ussery vs Stuart Tucker who
is reliving his LL catcher days.
Ed Note: This event remains my pick as the ideal WBC tournament:
a well stocked shark pool of skilled players in it for the duration
- any one of whom can rise to the top in a given year. 2014 was
again no exception as two stalwarts battled their way to the
Final to enhance their resumes - but a return trip next year
will remain a challenge for both - as it should be.
George Young's tournament got off to an excellent start when
the 42nd and last player to arrive for Round 1 was a strong veteran
who drew the short straw and played defending champion Keith
Wixson. Five hours later, after a tough see-saw battle, Michael
Sosa survived a 9-9 tie against Wixson, thus removing one major
obstacle in Young's bracket. Young managed to use Rome to defeat
Gary Dickson, killing Hannibal on Turn 9 and winning 10-8. Chris
Byrd defeated Grant LaDue as Rome resigned in Turn 9 after Scipio
Africanus' death. Top-ranked James Pei survived a tough match
against Ben Gardner, while benefitting from a Turn 6 Truce that
Gardner couldn't break until Turn 8. High-ranked Henry Rice used
double envelopment twice to push Tim Miller to resignation in
Turn 6, but then found his priorities confused and dropped out
of the tournament, thus benefitting Todd Treadway, who dominated
his bracket for three rounds. Another high-ranked player to fall
out of contention early was Jim Heenehan, he of the plummed helmet,
whose Romans lost 7-11 to Michael Ussery. Newcomer Bjorn von
Knorring won an early knockout in Turn 4 against Matt Bacho,
as Hannibal dominated Italy. GM Stuart Tucker used an early Syracusan
alliance to control Sicily for the rest of the game to win 11-7
at the time of Turn 8 resignation by Jeff Miller. In Round 1,
Carthage was victorious 14 times in 21 games.
In Round 2, Treadway defeated high-ranked Lyman Moquin, with
Varro killing Hannibal early and Rome winning 12-6 at the time
of resignation in Turn 8. Sosa's Carthaginians killed Africanus
in Turn 6 and forced von Knorring to resign in Turn 8. Young
advanced with an 11-7 win over John Boisvert. James Pei sacrificed
Sicily in order to take Spain, forcing Bruce Wigdor's resignation.
Tucker threw back Paul Gaberson's Roman invasion of southern
Spain, forcing resignation in Turn 7. Byrd advanced quickly against
Henry Richardson. In Round 2, Carthage again was dominant, winning
11 of 19.
In Round 3, Emily Allbutt (the only woman to enter two years
in a row) got her first victory of the year over rookie Noah
Engelmann, despite losing Hannibal in Turn 7. Treadway crushed
Evan Woodham with a Suit for Peace for lack of PCs in Turn 9.
Newcomer John Gitzen II upset 2002 champ Peter Reese, with the
latter's Romans never getting to play a single Campaign Card.
Luongo ran out of PCs against Byrd's Carthaginians in Turn 7.
Young sacked Sosa's Carthage in Turn 5. James Pei knew he was
in for a different experience when Tucker used the Siege Train
to sack Massilia on Turn 2, but managed to kill Hannibal on Turn
6 and make enough inroads into Spain to force a Turn 9 resignation
in a game that never saw Philip or Syracuse join the war. In
Round 3, Carthage maintained their advantage, winning ieight
In Round 4, Young crossed paths with Byrd's Carthaginians
and used two late Intercepted Messengers to secure a tight 9-8
victory. Treadway's Carthaginians lost Hannibal in Turn 3 to
Pei's Romans, who then invaded Africa in Turn 6 forcing an early
resignation when Treadway saw his cards couldn't stop a drive
on Carthage. Gitzen (3-0) found himself matched against Sosa
(2-1), due to Sosa's highest-strength-of-schedule tiebreaker.
Sosa's Romans killed Hannibal in Turn 4 and forced Gitzen's resignation
in Turn 8. This left only two undefeated players for Round 5.
Rome found its second wind and won nine of 13 games in Round
Round 5 found 11 players still in the hunt for some sort of
wood. Tucker lost his chance to Randall MacInnis when Tucker's
Hasdrubal took 7 CUs into the deep trying to get to Sardinia,
while Syracuse was recaptured in Turn 8 and MacInnis held on
for a 10-8 win. Wixson supped his rankings in the sandman parade
by surviving 9-9 against Woodham's Romans. Byrd carried away
5th place by virtue of defeating Heenehan's island strategy and
recovering Syracuse on Turn 8. Von Knorring's Mago sailed early
to Croton to seize Tarentum and force Gitzen's early resignation
and thereby secure third place. Sosa's 11-7 defeat of Luongo
and his strength of schedule gave him second
All that remained was The battle for the Wood between James
Pei and George Young. As expected, it was a very tight game that
came down to who got dealt the Syracuse card on Turn 9. I guess
that is why we play the games against James - he's not guaranteed
victory, and in this case, Young pulled out a 10-8 win to get
the Wood and drop Pei into fourth place. The final count for
the tournament was Carthage 42, Rome 34, and a very enjoyable
tournament. Syracuse allied with Carthage in 41 of the 76 games,
then was sacked in 11. The GM thanks his 46 players again for
being such good sports and making such a fine competition worth
every minute spent. Nine tournament newcomers came and managed
a collective 12-13 record. Well done!!
Lyman Moquin tangles with Ben Gardner.