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2018 Sportsmanship Award Nominees Last updated November 30, 2018
Without any further ado, let's present the class of 2018, and as always, it is a deserving group. The following individuals, listed alphabetically, were just some of the many nominated for the reasons indicated below and owe their appearance here to both their own actions and the fervency of their sponsors in relating it to BPA. As is our practice, all BPA members are urged to vote for one of the following when submitting their membership form and voting for Trial events before January 31, 2019. Those who have already joined for the 2019 season are encouraged to submit their votes separately to the convention director. Reward a good sport with our biggest prize … free lodging at the next WBC.
Transatlantic - Mike Brazinski, during the heats, took time to explain the game to new players. He also made himself available after the games to discuss strategy for playing in a later heat. Nominated by the GM.



The Napoleonic Wars - Melvin Casselberry continued to do great work coaching new players over the last ten years, often giving up his own chance to play to do so. Nominated by the GM.



Santa Fe Rails - Tom DeMarco, during his game, helped a new player which hurt his position throughout the game. Nominated by the GM and Andrew Drummond.

According to Andrew Drummond "In a game of Santa Fe Rails this year, I played with Tom DeMarco and a player who had never played the game before. Tom did his best to help the new player despite his struggles and as a result lost a number of key positions throughout the game. At all times, Tom was incredibly helpful and never showed any frustration despite how much the game was swung against him."



Wilderness War - Paul Gaberson, in the championship game, reminded his opponent of an obscure victory condition that allowed him to make a final attack with his last card play to win the game. Had he remained silent, he would have won his fifth Wilderness War title. Paul is well known in the Card Driven Games circles for being a gentlemen and a gracious player. His behavior in this game shows how well earned his reputation is. Paul is a credit to the hobby. Nominated by the GM.
Britannia - Jon Hagmaier, graciously volunteered to cede his place for the semifinals when the GM was faced with 13 winners and a 12 person semifinal. This allowed the gM to not have to resort to the 4th order tiebreakers. Nominated by the GM.



Command & Colors: Napoleonics - Mark Jarvis saw that his opponent moved off of a hex that would have given Mark aanother banner and the win. Mark pointed out the error and allowed his opponent to reconsider and retake his turn. Nominated by the GM.



Wits & Wagers Family - Timothy Manley, at 11 years old, was attending his second WBC. He played in several Juniors tournaments last year hoping for some wood, as we all do, but was shut out. Nominated by Jon Manley.

"This year he recruited his brother, 15 years old, to play in the family Wits and Wagers Tournament. Timothy had a friend who was going to play with his dad and form another team. However, the friends dad was running late because of a tournament of his own. When Timothy realized this he ran back to the Juniors room and told his friend that he could come and play with Timothy and his brother to form a team. Their team dominated the tournament, getting first and earning a plaque. Of course, only one first place plaque was issued. Only one of the Juniors could get the plaque while the other got a blue ribbon. When Timothy's friend stated that he never had gotten a plaque and would love to have one. Timothy willingly gave up the plaque and took a ribbon in it's place so his friend would not be disappointed."

"Timothy did earn his own plaque later by winning the JR's Alhambra tournament, so he did get to come home with some wood."



878: Vikings - Jeff Miller was nominated by John Parker for his actions in the final of 878.

According to John, "Jeff and I were playing each other in the 878: Vikings semi final last night. I was playing the Vikings; Jeff was playing the English. The object is to have the majority of the cities under one’s control when the game ends. An important rule for the Vikings is that, once they take a city, they cannot leave it entirely unoccupied. If they do, it will revert to English control.

In the first round, I was very careful to leave some units behind when I moved the majority of my army out of them. However, in the second or third round, I neglected to do that, and only discovered my mistake after the subsequent battle. (By this time, the movement phase was entirely over with; movement comes before battle.) When I discovered my error, I asked Jeff if he would allow me to rectify that instead of having the city automatically revert to English control. He very graciously granted my request. At this point in the game, the outcome was far from certain; this decision certainly could have cost him the game. As a matter fact, he won the game by a score of 11 to 6; however, the outcome was in doubt until the very end.

Besides this act of graciousness, Jeff was fun to play against. Although he did his best to win (as did I) he still remembered throughout the game that the important thing was to have fun."



Britannia! - Matt O'Connor was nominated by Bob Malcomson for his play during a Britannia Heat game.

Bob writes "I’d like to nominate Matt O’Connor for 2018 WBC sportsmanship award. It’s commendable when experts use their knowledge to empower other players rather than as a competitive advantage.

I met Matt when we played the third heat of Britannia. He had won the last two Britannia championships and was trying for three-peat, which has never been done in Britannia. This match was his last chance to win a heat and advance into the semis. The stakes were high for him.

The other three players were experienced but not experts. Matt was the shark at the table. Britannia has a diplomatic aspect. Players frequently make short term deals, such as dividing territory or one-turn non-aggression pacts. The other players frequently asked Matt for analysis and he would explain both sides: this is why the deal would be good for you and this is why it’s bad. Many players only offer the side of the argument that helps them.

As with many multiplayer games, in Britannia it’s critical to target the player that’s in the lead. That requiring a lot of interpretation because VPs come in at different times depending on which countries you have. Only an expert can interpret who is winning at the moment. The players frequently asked and Matt would explain how each player was doing relative to par.

There was a memorable moment late in the game. I was thinking about my move and the other players were telling me to attack Matt. I looked at him and he blankly said “You should attack me, I’m winning.” His table analysis was remarkably non-manipulative. Matt wanted a good game more than he wanted to win. That’s sportsmanship.

This story has a happy ending. The last few turns Matt’s dice were ridiculously hot and he pulled off an epic come back win and advance to the semifinals."



Love Letter - Mat Thomsen was nominated by Darlene Gormly for his helpfulness to a 1st time attendee

Darlene wrote, "I'm a 1st time attendee, accompanying my husband. He's attended 8 to 10 WBC's in the past, and missed the last few years due to a job change. He's the gamer in the family. I play more of the jr. category of games (Ingenious, Battleline, Lost Cities, etc.).

I was pretty nervous to try any tournament game with experienced gamers, even if they are the games that I Iike to play. My 1st attempt yesterday was with Love Letters after watching a demo. It did come down to another young girl and me at our table of four, with her taking the win. However, I still felt apologetic in not being as quick to catch on or make decisions at times. Mat sat next to me and not only was patient and reassuring, he really had an attitude of "we're here to enjoy playing games and just have fun." I couldn't have asked for a better first official tournament experience, and really appreciated Mat's kindness and demeanor in general. Amazing that he was still this cheerful six days into the WBC!

I know that sportsmanship can have varied interpretations, but I like this one: Some people define good sportsmanship as the "golden rule" of sports — in other words, treating the people you play with and against as you'd like to be treated yourself. You demonstrate good sportsmanship when you show respect for yourself, your teammates, and your opponents."

If Mat interacts with others the way he did with me during each game he plays throughout this week, you can be sure he is spreading goodwill and helping many people decide to come back again next year to enjoy playing games."



Honorable Mention: Bill Crenshaw, Josh Githens, Paul O'Neil, Anthony Russo, and David Rynkowski.