The Killing Fields
We had 12 groups of four play the usual round robin format.
The winners and the order they finished were:
Group #1 - Chris Palmero snuck in on a tiebreaker going 2-1
and then elected not to advance to the single elimination round.
Group #2 - Jason Levine managed three breakthroughs and managed
to avoid his usual nemesis, moi. But being his team game, you
just know team points were NOT in his future.
Group #3 had Sean "I finally won a plaque and am a real
Cabbie now" McCulloch advance in a tiebreaker. Former champ
Kevin Youells went a disappointing 1-2 in this group.
In group #4 left coaster Keith Schoose, the least pretty of
the Schoose clan, dominated with three wins, two via breakthrough,
In group #5 Brad Raszewski came back from an early loss to
beat Mike Stanley 'Tools' and Kate, Mrs. Arthur Field, Taillon
via breakthrough to advance. I wonder if I can call Kate that?
In group #6 your
trusty author/GM had three breakthroughs to make the single elim
part of the event for the third time.
Group #7 had Thomas Powell-Bullock score two breakthroughs
en route to a 3-0 showing to make the next round.
In group #8 Mike Nagle had two close matches but went 3-0
to advance over a field including regular winner, and one of
my favorite names, Beavis Barrington. Heh, heh.
Mr Kremlin, aka Steve Cuccaro, had a breakthrough on Jeff
"I gots me a real plaque now" Mullet and held on to
advance on a tiebreaker from group #9.
Rob Taylor had three breakthroughs to advance from group #10.
Too bad his Liberty efforts didn't go quite as well. Heh
Defending champ Arthur Field became the third person to advance
with three breakthroughs. And as a bonus his group, #11, wasn't
the last to finish.
The honor of last was reserved for 2003 champ Ken Gutermuth,
he of no plaques in 2004 or 2005. But his ladies keep racking
them up! Anyway, Ken managed an amazing feat in his group. He
didn't give up a point to his opponents, and yet only had two
breakthroughs! He actually won a game 5-0! Wow!!!
Byes were given to past champions and then randomly to those
going 3-0. This set up single elimination games of Sean McCulloch
vs Rob Talyor, Bruce Reiff vs Mike Nagel and Brad Raszewski vs
Steve Cuccaro. Sean, last year's 2nd place finisher handled Rob
easily after he tried to bid 2 for the Americans (wrong game
Rob J ). Steve got by Brad and Mike Nagel brought a smile to
Don Greenwood's face and sent the GM packing. The quarterfinals
Arthur Field vs Sean, Jason Levine vs Keith Schoose, Thomas
Powell-Bullock vs giant killer Mike Nagel and Mr Kremlin vs woodless
Arthur and Sean, reprising last years' titanic Final went
back and forth with Arthur repeating with the late victory.
Keith Schoose pounded Jason Levine, ensuring that Jason would
yet again score 0 team points for the Baby Seals.
Mike Nagel stayed alive in a close one over Thomas and Ken
Gutermuth defeated Steve Cuccaro to keep hope alive.
The first semifinal was Arthur and Keith. It looked early
on that Keith had the defending champ on the ropes but Arthur,
with somewhat inferior cards, struggled back to win. In the other
semifinal Mike Nagel added to his burgeoning reputation as a
giant killer and took down a dejected Ken who was overheard mumbling
something about 'at least my wife managed to win a plaque'.
So, Mike Nagel, defender of truth, comforter of the downtrodden,
slayer of giants, hero of the masses had one more giant obstacle,
err speed bump on his road to WBC immortality. Could he do to
Arthur what he did to Ken, Bruce and all the others? In a word,
no. Arthur scored a breakthrough and collected his second Battleline
plaque. Oh, Mike, what could have been!