Hear it for the Dayton Flyers
Sara Beach, Ivan Lawson, Laurie Wojtaszcyk
and Dan Eshleman are seeing colored spots before their eyes as
Matt Calkins scored a perfect game
in the semis to eliminate Laurie Wojtaszcyk, Greg Wilson and
Consul Andy Latto.
While the overall attendance increased by only a handful from
last year, the numbers of games played increased to 64. That
meant people were playing more than one heat, which was my goal
when I changed the format to best two games. The new format also
solved the problem of effectively being eliminated if you lost
your first heat. So for the future I'll go with the advancement
rules as is.
One thing that didn't change from last year: I had to scramble
for games to accommodate everybody and still having to shoo away
a few last minute entrants. I can't stress this enough: BRING
A COPY OF THE GAME!!!! . It does no good if it's sitting in your
room because "somebody else will have it." And having
the game guarantees you'll get to play.
I was hoping that I would get all players who won two or more
games into the semi-final round, with a handful of players with
a first and a second. I accomplished that as a first and what
I would call an OK second got you in. Karen Roberts was the only
three-game winner, with Joe Yaure, Steve Cameron, Tom Dunning,
Nick Smith, David Maynard, Brittany Bernard, Peter Stein, Andy
Latto and Daniel Eppolito winning twice.
The semi-finals had the full allotment of 16 players. Table
#1 had Matt Calkins score a perfect game of all 18s, which knocked
out defending champ Andy Latto, Greg Wilson and Laurie Wojtaszczyk.
Table #2 was a very close game with Brittany Bernard squeaking
past Nick Smith, Joe Yaure and Karen Roberts. At Table #3 Alexandra
Henning, Katie McCorry and Bruce Bernard did their best but could
not beat the Evil Empire of Bruce Reiff, which made him the only
returning finalist. At Table #4 your friendly GM and Dan Mathias
were reduced to spectators fairly quickly, as Daniel Eppolito
nudged out a victory over Jonathan Gemmell.
For the first time, your humble GM had to watch the Final
instead of play in it. Two things I picked up on were (1) The
cries of "You're the Leader" start pretty early and
(2) the game is much quieter than the prelims or the semis. Well,
except for when I had to point out to Bruce that I was probably
the only other person in the room who knew any of the lines to
the theme song of the TV show Baretta.
The Final was a close game with plenty of moves to cut others
off. It was close most of the way. Near the end, Bruce's beloved
Green betrayed him as he got cut off of it at a bad time and
was done. On his last turn, Matt had the near impossible task
of getting his score ahead of everybody, while at the same time
cutting off both Daniel and Brittany. It was Brittany who stayed
in contention the whole game and had the right tile at the right
time and was able to pull out the victory with 13 points over
Matt 11, Daniel 10-13, Bruce 10-11.
Congratulations to our new champ who has the distinction of
being the only person to beat both Bruce (twice) and Daniel in
the tournament. Already there are rumblings about a rematch,
as Brittany is a student at University of Dayton, which is just
an hour away from Columbus. . . .
Daniel Eppolito won this semi-final
over Jonathan Gemell as GM Pete Stein and Dan Mathias were reduced
to also-rans. Pete, excused from the Final for the first time,
now needs to find another event to GM.
The Final Four pose for their 15 minutes
of fame. All hail the heroic defenders of the faith and deniers
of the evil Reiff empire; Calkins, Bernard and Eppolito. If only
they could play Battleline.