Round Robin Victory
Which card to play ...
One row of many ...
As in 2008, a player could advance to the second Round
Friday by winning a match during the Mulligan Round on Thursday
or in Round 1 on Friday. In each case, players played a
two-game match of the scenario for that round, with players switching
sides between games. Players advanced to the next round
based on most total medals earned and most enemy figures eliminated
in the two games.
The theme of this year's tournament was the Battle of the Bulge
featuring Twin Villages in Round 1, St. Vith in Round 2, Baraque
de Fraiture (Parker's Crossroads) in Round 3, Relief of Peiper
in Round 4, Bastogne Corridor West in Round 5, and Bastogne Corridor
East in Rounds 6 and 7. Five of the six scenarios
were from the Air Pack Expansion. Baraque de Fraiture
was published as a Winter 2007 Give-Away from Days of Wonder.
There was again a shortage of games for the Mulligan round
on Thursday night. However, by players volunteering to
retrieve games from their rooms, we only had to turn away one
player. Nevertheless, the shortage of games did significantly
delay the start of the Mulligan round. Fortunately, players
brought plenty of games for the 1st round on Friday. In
all, 62 players participated -- the same number as in the two
Because five players advanced to Round 5, the GM served as
an eliminator in this round. Playing against the GM, Eric
Monte lost the first game 3-6 in medals as the Allies.
In the second game, Eric was down to his last roll to avoid
losing his 4th medal and the match, when he destroyed the sixth
Allied unit to win the game 6-3 and the match 42-38 on figures
eliminated. In another Round 5 match, Allen Kaplan swept
Mike Shea 6-3 as the Allies and 6-5 as the Axis. Mike had just
eliminated defending champion, Scott Gibson 11-8 on medals in
The remaining match of Round 5 was the most exciting game
of the tournament. Sam Edelston, last year's runner-up,
won the first game of the match 6-5 as the Axis against Gordon
Rodgers, 2008's 5th place laurelist. This was the ninth straight
game Sam had won in the tournament without a loss. All
of his previous victories in earlier rounds had been by at least
two medals. In the second game, it looked like Sam, leading
5-3, would take his 10th straight win and the match, when Gordon
played "Their Finest Hour". Not only did Gordon
roll well enough to activate five units, the maximum possible,
but he hit with every one of his die rolls, scoring three kills,
including a 4-figure tank, and winning the game 6-5. Because
Sam and Gordon were tied 11-11 in medals and 41-41 in figures
eliminated, Gordon advanced to the next round based on the tie
breaker number he drew at the beginning of the tournament: 188
to Sam's 187. It was that close. Both had high tie
breaker numbers because they had both brought their game.
With three players advancing, the sixth round turned into
a three-game round-robin semi-final to advance two to the Final.
Each player would play each other player once and each side once
to eliminate one player. In the first game, Allen as the
axis defeated Eric 6-4. As the loser, Eric switched sides
and played Gordon in the second game and won 6-5 as the Axis,
staving off elimination. In the third game, Gordon as the Axis
beat Allen 6-1, leaving all three players with 1-1 records.
Gordon and Eric advanced to the Final Match with 11 and 10 medals,
respectively, to Allen's seven.
In the first Final game, Gordon as the Axis jumped off to
a 5-1 lead, before Eric killed three units on one turn.
However, Gordon was able to earn his final medal to win 6-4 before
Eric was able to do further damage. The game featured the
first use of the Storch by any player in the Bastogne Corridor
East scenario, as Gordon used the plane to evacuate a single
figure infantry piece to avoid the potential loss of a medal.
In the second game, Eric jumped off to a 2-1 lead as the Axis,
before Gordon rallied to earn four medals and win 6-2, sweeping
the Final match.
The GM wishes to especially thank his Assistant GMs Sam Edelston,
Gordon Rodgers and Stuart Hendrickson for their help in running
Allen Kaplan played with a pedestrian
out-of-the-box set. His CCAnients game boasts beautifully painted
Finalists Eric Monte, Allen Kaplan,
Sam Edelston, GM Mark Guttag and Gordon Rodgers at the Final.