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Squad Leader (SQL) WBC 2018 Event Report
Updated November 26, 2018
20 Players Michael Day 2018 Status 2019 Status Event History
2018 Champion & Laurels
 

Michael Day Stops The Four-Peat

How many times have you heard, “I was diced!” or “Dice hate me!”? This year’s Squad Leader event had plenty of those experiences.

This year’s tournament drew twenty players who completed thirty-five games. Over two thirds of the games played were of the Squad Leader level, six games of Cross of Iron and four games as Crescendo of Doom. No GI: Anvil of Victory games were played this year. Some of the Squad Leader level scenarios played were shorter, simpler scenarios designed for easy tournament play and allow the players with little experience with the game system to effectively play a strong game.

Since the Squad Leader event moved to the Grognard format, the number of games played have increased dramatically and it would not be a success without the support of Bruno Sinigaglio and Bill Morse. Bruno takes the Squad Leader event under his wings for the Pre-Con portion while Bill manages all of the score keeping and player rankings. These two gentlemen have helped the Squad Leader event become a more enjoyable tourney, allowing more games to be played throughout the WBC timeframe.

Many of the games throughout the week were hard-fought battles which ended on the last dice roll. However, when Bruno “I got diced!” Sinigaglio was playing Eric “Snake Eyes” Stranger, the result seemed pre-ordained. I don’t have the complete statistics for the number of total dice rolls, but I think Eric's rolls exceeded anyone’s expectations of good dice. During the game of “The Tractor Works”, Eric rolled eleven snake eyes (1, 1 on two dice). Anyone close to that game almost received a play-by-play commentary from Bruno as he took the dicing in stride. Needless to say, Eric won that match.

In another game, George Bott’s Americans were defending the aggressive assault of Pete Pollard’s Germans. This scenario is a short game that does require an aggressive advance, but maybe the German’s blundered into something they just didn’t expect. Only about halfway into the game, George was able to remove half of the German attackers with two defensive shots. Not taking away any of his defensive setup or strategy, but those two rolls (both snake eyes) killed half of the Germans, effectively ending and hopes for a German victory.

The semifinals were paired up with George Bott playing Warren Day in one match and Greg Tanner playing Michael Day in the other. I believe this is the first time that both of the Day brothers were in the semifinals and I wondered what a final match would look like with sibling rivalry as a main factor for the outcome.

In one semifinal, Greg Tanner’s U.S. forces attack Michael Day’s Germans setup in concealed positions in and around the objective in the Squad Leader Academy scenario “Eviction Notice”.

At the start, the American armor moved up to engage the Germans on the 2nd floor of the objective building. The American advance was harried by well-placed defensive fire. Greg then took a more cautious route for his main body while used his armor mobility to flank the German positions and place fire onto the objective from another angle.

Michael responded with more defensive fire and then setup his off-board artillery for defensive fire on the advancing GI’s. The Americans continue to move in despite the German defensive fire capabilities. He tried to encircle the objective building with more armor, especially since the Germans would receive reinforcements in his following turn. Greg’s armor was ready to providing covering fire, however, Michael’s hidden antitank gun opened fire on the nearby armor on the right flank. The gun successfully destroyed a Sherman and a M10, opening a route for his reinforcements to arrive unscathed by opposition.

The reinforcing German tanks then took up positions supporting the beleaguered forces at the objective building while the engineers quickly moved in to relieve the German defense. Near game end, an exchange of fire broke most of the American infantry, while the Germans lost one of the armor vehicles. The bloody exchange of fire broke the American assault and Greg’s troops never made it into the building. After shaking hands on the conclusion of this game, Michael Day advanced to the final.

In the other semifinal, George Bott’s Americans defended against Warren’s Germans attacking in the Avalon Hill scenario “Buchholz Station”. The German’s goal is to either move troops off the board, pushing past the U.S. defense or eliminate enough Americans to remove their will to fight. The Americans either stop the attack or force the Germans to retreat with enough losses.

The Americans provide a stiff defense and try to match every move of the Germans to prevent getting outmaneuvered. Warren’s troops, encountering heavy resistance on both its flanks, employ engineers to lay smoke and move into the woods just northwest of town. George starts working on a delaying action style of defense, frustrating Warren at almost every move. Warren continues to push on, systematically advancing on the outskirts of Buchholz. At this point, the Germans suffer more casualties and are near the point of breaking off the assault. Ignoring the dangers, Warren moves in a squad and leader to attack the U.S. halftrack. Warren is successful in destroying the halftrack with a panzerfaust, but his forces soon took enough losses, forcing him to give up the battle and moving George Bott forward to the final with Michael Day.

The final pairing was set, George Bott played the Russians and Michael Day the Germans in the Squad Leader Academy scenario “King of the Hills”. George’s massive Russian infantry force was supported by four T34 tanks. George’s troops advanced quickly to engage the defenders and his armor swept past the defense to intercept the Germans reinforcements. However, when Michael brought on his reinforcements, he was able to slip past the screening force with only one casualty.

The Germans assaulted into the large wooded area on the west edge of the map, trying to dislodge George’s troops from some key territory. This attack eventually succeeded, but the German assault gun became immobilized in the process when it tried to wrest another VP from the Russians in a wooden building. Unfortunately for Michael, the assault gun’s crew abandoned its vehicle and immediately entered into close combat which it lost.

At another portion of the board, the Russians pressed into the southern woods and temporarily taking enough VPs to win.

It looked like George had finally secured a victory in this maelstrom of a fight, swirling around the various VP locations on the map. However, the Germans mustered enough firepower to break two squads and provide the German’s with a victory. With that, Michael Day wins the Squad Leader tournament.

 
2018 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 4
George Bott Greg Tanner Warren Day Pete Pollard Eric Stranger
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
 
Grognard leader Bruno Sinigaglio leading a squad
in WWII action,
Massive Troop build up in this game.
Michael Day on his way to tyhe championship. Finalists with GM Pete Pollard.
 
GM  Pete Pollard [13th Year]  NA
 Pete4258@aol.com  NA