up front [updated October 2002]

UPF   4 prizes Experienced Mult Ent Sing Elim Continuous 
  Rnd1 Heat1 17
 Rnd1 Heat2 16    Rnd1 Heat3 15
 Rnd1 Heat4 18      Round 2 9 Final

 Rnd1 Heat1 Rnd1 Heat2 Salon EF  Rnd1 Heat3 Rnd1 Heat4 Round 2 Valley

John Emery, SC

2002 Champion

2nd: Bruce Young, SC

3rd: Larry Davidson, CA

4th: Ray Stakenas II, MI

5th: Bari Herman, NJ

6th: Bruce Wigdor, NJ

Event History
1991    Mark Cohen      44
1992    Maria Hawthorne      43
1993    Bruce Young      53
1994    Bruce Young      53
1995    Herbert Gratz      48
1996    William Edwards III      46
1997    John Emery      42
1998    John Emery      55
1999    Larry Davidson     42
2000    John Emery     34
2001    Bruce Wigdor     39
2002    John Emery     50

AREA Ratings

GM: Jeremy Billones

Past Winners

1991: Mark Cohen - NJ
1992: Maria Hawthorne - VA

Bruce Young - SC

Herbert Gratz - AUS

Bill Edwards - VA

John Emery - SC
1997-1998, 2000

Larry Davidson - CA

Bruce Wigdor - NJ

Another Year, Another Format

Despite much strum and drang regarding the format, the scenarios, the locations, delays, rulings, and other mishmash, the Up Front tournament ended as any Vegas linesmaker might have predicted.

The format for this year was single-elimination, with players selecting from a fixed pool of scenarios in their first and second round matches, then using player-chosen scenarios the rest of the way. With each heat averaging about 28 players, the winner would have to manage a seven-game winning streak to take the title.

The first heat saw 30 players cram into Salon E. The first round offered a choice of Assaulting a Fortification or Parachute Drop. The second round offered a pair of armor attacks, with Bruce Wigdor getting a bye to even up the pairings. The eight remaining players played a mix of Patrol and Outpost Line, with one British/German Surprise Attack as evidence of what happens when scenario selection goes horribly wrong. The first two finalists were Bruce Wigdor (over Larry Davidson) and Ray Stakenas Jr. (over John Emery).

Heat 2 saw 28 players make their choice of a Jungle Assault or a City Fight. The 14 survivors tried another pair of armor scenarios. The later rounds showed a mix of City Fights and Outpost Lines, with one game of Partisans to show some variety. John Emery took a third round bye and eventually claimed the third berth in the finals (over Stefan Hess), while Larry Davidson took the fourth (over Jeremy Billones).

Heat 3 saw 30 players tackle a City Fight or Outpost Line. An unfortunate ruling by the GM saw Paul Wright and Dan Lawall eliminated by drawing each other, a rule that will not be in force in the 2003 tournament. The fourteen players in the second round faced another pair of armored scenarios. The later rounds settled into the usual mix of Patrols, City Fights, and Outpost Lines. Bruce Young parleyed a third round bye into the fifth berth in the finals, while Bari Herman beat George Young on the very last card (in a deck reshuffled to resolve the last fire attack) to claim the sixth berth and save the GM from the wrong end of a noose.

The fourth and final heat saw 28 competitors in attendance. Bari Herman claimed the third round bye based on her AREA rating, but fell to John Emery who took the seventh berth in the finals (and, effectively, a first round bye). Bruce Young bested Stefan Hess (who had perhaps the toughest strength of schedule of anyone in the tournament) to take the finalslot, and a bye of his own.

In the quarter-finals, Larry Davidson (Ami att) dispatched Bruce Wigdor (Ger def) in The Infantry's Iron Fist. Meanwhile, Ray Stakenas Jr. (Rus att) was playing Bari Herman (Ger def) in Outpost Line. After a finish where Ray had fulfilled the victory conditions but due to a rules misunderstanding both players hadn't been aware of it, Bari insisted on forfeiting the match. In the Semi-finals, Bruce Young (Ger att) broke Larry Davidson (Rus def) in Partisans, while John Emery (Ami def) repelled Ray Jr (Ger att) in Outpost Line.

So the finals, not for the first time, saw John Emery (Jap def) facing frequent opponent Bruce Young (Ami att) as the two members of the Greenville mafia continued their personal duel 450 miles from home. After three full decks of Outpost Line, John Emery had claimed his fourth Up Front championship.

 GM      Jeremy Billones  [2nd Year]   NA
    NA   NA

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