Jim Kramer, PA
Charlie Drozd, IL
Bruce Monnin, OH
Andy Gardner, VA
John Pack, CO
Bruce Monnin, OH
1991, 1993, 2004
Phil Rennert, MD
Ray Freeman, CA
1995, 1999, 2003
Steve Packwood, MN
Tim Hitchings, DE
Mike Kaye, CA
Pat Richardson, FL
David Finberg, MA
Andy Gardner, VA
Dennis Nicholson, NY
John Sharp, FL
Jonathan Lockwood, VA
Vince Meconi, DE
47 Still in Convoy ...
AC woes or not, Lampeter filled on
Bruce Monnin, our PBeM GM guru vs
Mike Brophy and Mark Gutfreund
Joe Powell and John Shingara
Running the table for the second time ...
Jonathan Lockwood ran the table with eight wins to take his
second WAS title. He had previously won the WBC crown
in 2008 with an identical 8-0 mark, obviously preferring perfection
to split decisions. He also made the playoffs for the fifth straight
year, a new record. He beat Jim Kramer (6-2-0) in the Final.
Charlie Drozd finished third at 5-1-1 and Bruce Monnin nabbed
fourth with a 5-2 log. Andy Gardner (4-2), finished fifth and
received a copy of the book Struggle for the Middle Sea: The
Great Navies at War in the Mediterranean Theater 1940-1945, given
to the highest finisher not winning a plaque. The remaining playoff
contenders were John Pack, Ben Gardner and Ray Freeman at 3-3.
At the conclusion of the Swiss round, automatic playoff qualifiers
were: 1) Jonathan Lockwood, 48 VPs/5-0; 2) Charlie Drozd, 43
VPs, 4-0-1; 3) Bruce Monnin, 42 VPs & 4-1; 4) Andy Choptiany,
38 VPs/4-1; 5) Andy Gardner, 38 VPs, 4-1; and 6) Jim Kramer,
36 VPs & 4-1. John Pack, Ben Gardner, and Sean Druelinger
tied for seventh place with identical 3-2 records and 32 Victory
Points, but Sean withdrew due to family commitments. Andy Choptiany
also withdrew due to a family emergency and Ray Freeman (3-2,
30 VPs) then won a schedule tiebreaker over Mike Kaye (3-1, 30
VPs) and defending champion Steve Packwood (3-2, 30 VPs) for
the eighth playoff slot.
In the quarterfinals, top seed Lockwood's Allies handled Ben
Gardner, Monnin's Allies beat Pack, Drozd's Axis stopped Ray
Freeman, and Kramer's Axis cruised past Andy Gardner's Allies.
In the semifinals, Kramer's Axis maxed out against Monnin while
Lockwood's Allies overcame Drozd.
In the Final, Kramer took the Allies for a 2.5 bid. Jim deployed
the Barents on 2 opening. It was a classic match in which the
POC seldom strayed far from the 0 indicator. In fact, the match
came down to the last die roll of Turn 8. Jim had seven ASW in
the South Atlantic to remove Jonathan's seven U-boats, but could
not come up with the great roll to do so -- taking out four but
allowing the Axis to break control and deny the Allies 1 POC.
With that result, the raw POC of Allies +2 became an adjusted
POC after the bid of +0.5 Axis. It was our closest ever Final.
47 players entered and 85 total games were played; despite
the engine room conditions in the Lampeter Room, both were the
highest totals in four years. The favorite opening Allied strategy
was again Barents on 1 by a wide margin; although no exact stats
were compiled, it appeared that more Axis players were declining
to sail on Turn 1and even Turn 2 if Allied deployments were not
to their liking. One Axis player didn't sail until Turn 5! Kramer
copped Best Axis Player with a 6-1 mark, while Lockwood nabbed
Best Allied Player laurels at 5-0, the seventh time he has been
so designated. David Anderson of Farmington Hills, MI took Rookie
of the Year honors with a 3-2-0 record good for 14th place. Finally,
John Welage was our sportsmanship nominee. In addition to being
a long-time competitor, a real gentleman, and great opponent,
he's always willing to be the odd man out if necessary.
Play balance couldn't have been better as the Axis and Allies
each won 42 contests with one tie. It is very likely that the
marginally increased bids for the Allies contributed to that
balance. 81 of the 85 games featured an Allied bid; the remaining
four games had no bid. The average bid was 1.72 (all games) and
1.80 (games with a bid), both all time highs. Bids either changed
the outcome or the scoring of 19 games, another all-time high.
As always, putting on the tournament is a team effort. My
thanks go to Assistant Gamemasters Rob Drozd, Ewan McNay, and
John Sharp; John also provided the chess clocks. Also lending
a hand were Charlie Drozd and Bob Hamel.
John sharp adjusts the standings on
the magnetized leader board after finishing his game.
Jonathon Lockwood and James Kramer
in the Final after finishing 7th & 8th in 2011.
Play By Email 2012
Dennis Nicholson earned his second BPA War At Sea plaque,
besting a field of 50 players in the 8th BPA War At Sea
PBeM Championship. He had previously won the 2005 WBC tournament.
Dennis went 6-0 to win the double elimination event. He began
with a win over Philip Watkins, then continued to defeat Don
Greenwood, Darren Kilfara, and Robert Drozd before taking down
Vince Meconi twice to end the event.
Vince made it to the last stage of the winner's bracket, where
a loss to Dennis forced him to defeat Don Greenwood in a come-from-behind
thriller in the loser's bracket in order to earn his unsuccessful
rematch with Dennis. Don Greenwood finished third while compiling
the most victories in the event. He lost his second game in the
winner's bracket to Dennis, then ran off a string of six wins
in the loser's bracket before barely falling to runner-up Meconi.
Jim Laws (4th), Robert Drozd (5th) and Darren Kilfara (6th) rounded
out the laurelists for the event.
In the Final, Dennis, needing only one win in two tries, bid
2.0 POC for the Allies in Game I. He then deployed a version
of the "Barents on One" opening with a weaker than
normal force in the North Sea. Vince responded by sending everything
to the North Sea, taking it at a cost of two 1-2-7 cruisers and
earning a 2-POC lead.
He followed that with a successful Turn 2 Axis foray into
the South Atlantic, building the Axis lead to 6 POC (8 after
the bid). Turn 3 saw the Allies turn the tide with a small battle
in the Barents to trim the Axis lead to 5. The Allies then successfully
ran two convoys to Russia on Turns 4 and 5 to take a 1-POC lead.
On Turn 6, the Axis won in the South Atlantic, and had a chance
to cripple the Allies when a U-Boat put a torpedo into the last
convoy. However, the dice were unkind to Vince and the convoy
suffered only one point of damage. The Axis ended the turn up
1 POC (3 after the bid).
The Allies started repositioning forces on Turn 7 to challenge
the Mediterranean on Turn 8 if necessary. The damaged convoy
was hit by U-boats again, but took only one point of additional
damage. The Axis managed to disable the convoy back to the United
States, where it would sail on Turn 8 in an attempt to earn one
vital POC. The Axis clung to a 1-POC lead.
The decision came down to Turn 8. Dennis' Allies managed to
challenge every sea area except the Baltic, including a five-battleship
force in the Mediterranean. Vince sortied to the North Sea, South
Atlantic and the Mediterranean. The Allies won expected victories
in the North Sea and South Atlantic, so it all came down to the
Med. The exchanged airstrikes went in the Allied favor, reducing
the Axis force to near equal strength and pitiful Italian gunnery
gave the game and the championship to Dennis and his bold foray
into the Med.
Final Results (50 Entrants 97 Games Played):
1st Dennis Nicholson (6-0)
2nd Vince Meconi (5-2)
3rd Don Greenwood (7-2)
4th Jim Laws (5-2)
5th Robert Drozd (3-2)
6th Darren Kilfara (3-2)