Updated 11/30/2008

Grognards Pre-Con
2008 WBC Report  

 2009 Status: pending 2009 GM commitment

Bert Schoose, IL

2007-08 Champion

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Event History
1991    Bart Rigg      12
1992    Johnny Hasay      10
1993    Tom Kearney      12
1994    Johnny Hasay      12
1995    Dave Giordano      10
1996    Eduardo De Nuccia      14
1997    Dave Giordano      20
1998    Chuck Leonard      16
1999    Dave Giordano     16
2000    Bill Scott     20
2001    Bill Scott     12
2002    Marty Musella     18
2003    Bill Scott     16
2004    Chuck Leonard     34
2005     Marty Musella     21
2006    Greg Tanner     19
2007     Bert Schoose     22
2008    Bert Schoose     23
PBeM Event History
2005    Eduardo DeNucci     19

Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Bill Scott         VA    08    127
  2.  Marty Musella      VA    08    113
  3.  Chuck Leonard      PA    08     82
  4.  Bert Schoose       IL    08     69
  5.  Greg Tanner        AZ    07     48
  6.  Dave Giordano      NJ    01     47
  7.  Alan Arvold        IL    08     30
  8.  Eduardo DeNucci Argentin 05     26
  9.  Rich Northey       MA    07     24
 10.  Johnny Hasay       PA    05     21
 11.  Donald Webster     MD    05     21
 12.  Tom Cooper         OH    05     15
 13.  Peter Bertram      GA    05     12
 14.  Dave Talmage       VA    01     12
 15.  Jay Zollitsch      WI    00     12
 16.  Bill Thomson       TX    08      9
 17.  Steve Andriakos    TX    07      9
 18.  Joe Avinger        GA    05      8
 19.  Matt Spitznagel    MD    03      8
 20.  Tim Greene         TN    00      8
 21.  Bert Schoose       IL    06      6
 22.  Randy MacInnis     NJ    05      6
 23.  Kurt Kurtz         OH    03      6
 24.  John Sharp         FL    05      5
 25.  Fred Schwarz       MI    05      4
 26.  Mark McBride       OH    02      3
 27.  Bill Riggs         VA    03      2
 28.  Tom Shaw           MD    02      1

2008 Laurelists                                          Repeating Laurelists:

Alan Arvold, IL

Chuck Leonard, PA

Bill Thomson, TX

Bill Scott, VA

Marty Musella, VA

Past Winners

91: Bart Rigg, KY
Tom Kearney, NC

Johnny Hasay, PA
1992, 1994

Dave Giordano, NJ
1995, 1997, 1999

Eduardo DeNucci, ARG

Chuck Leonard, PA
1998, 2004

Bill Scott, VA
2000-2001, 2003

Marty Musella, VA
2002, 2005

Greg Tanner, AZ

Bert Schoose, IL


 John Sharp takes time out from Victory in the Pacific for another golden oldie.

Bert Schoose successfully defends his championship against Alan Arvold.

The first "hit" wargame

The Panzers Keep Rolling

The 2008 Panzerblitz tournament started once again during the Grognard Precon with matches under the watchful eye of the Legend himself, Bruno Sinigaglio. Fortunately for Bruno, he pretty much only needed to keep an eye on Alan Arvold, since Alan played seven of the first nine matches against six different opponents. Alan started with a pair of victories and a draw. After losing a couple of games, he returned to his winning ways. Alan won four more matches in the preliminary rounds and added enough bonus points to secure a coveted spot in the final four. His total of 11 matches played easily set the pace for the tournament.
As more players arrived, other Panzerblitz players were soon joining in on the fun that the Precon affords to the early arriveals. Defending champion, Bert Schoose, won all three preliminary matches that he played to earn a spot in the semi-finals too. The previous two years had seen the exact same quartet make it to the semi-finals, but this time, Bert was the only one of the four to repeat the feat.
Bill Thomson lost his first match, but won his next three preliminary games to secure a spot in the final quartet. The tournament scoring system granted bonus points for playing against opponents that rack up wins. Bill defeated both Alan Arvold and Chuck Leonard, the 4th semi-finalist, to secure most of his 14 bonus points that earned him the top seed.
Chuck had four wins and a draw to offset his two losses in preliminary play to secure that last semi-final spot. He barely edged two former champions, Bill Scott and Marty Musella, who settled for 5th and 6th place respectively.
Overall, the Panzerblitz tournament, with a little help from Panzerleader, saw 23 players play 35 different matches in preliminary play. 11 of the 23 players played at least three games each. There were several more players that had expressed an interest to join in (or return to) this old favorite but just could not find the time to fit it into their schedule.
Most of the preliminary play used the five scenarios that the GM provided for the Elimination rounds. The scenarios provided included: 1A, 14, 45, 51 and 52. Players were welcome to play any scenario and some did just that. There were two matches involving Panzerleader. An excellent match between Rick Northey, a semi-finalist from each of the past two years, and Chuck Leonard included one of the scenarios from the superb Imaginative Strategist website. This epic battle lasted more than seven hours of play time before the GM gstopped following it. Later, the participants relayed that the match came down to the final die roll with Chuck prevailing.
A few rookies participated and several vowed to practice on the scenarios provided so that they could come back next year to vie for the wood. We very much look forward to their return as well as any others that would be inclined to join the fun.
On Friday evening, with the four semi-finalists determined, the playoffs commenced. The first match was between Bill Thomson and Alan Arvold playing scenario 52. This scenario requires the Russians to assault a German stronghold (Bednost) on the large hill (132) of board 2 - but to do so quickly. Bill's Russians began the assault with two separate groups. The west group's opening took the woods southwest of hill 132 while the east group moved into the eastern woods on hill 132 and dismounted their infantry. Alan's defense, which was concentrated within and adjacent to the city, moved into the adjacent hexes to meet the coming CAT attacks with a larger combined defense.
The split assault continued over the next couple of turns but mainly because the separate groups were not coordinated in their efforts, the clock quickly ticked away from the Russians. Alan had a series of successful CAT attacks himself and so the assault, which seemed to come in waves instead of all at once was successfully thwarted. At the end of Turn 5 Bill, the top seed, conceded to Alan who was now one step from the championship.
The other semi-final matched defending champ Bert Schoose and two-time past champ Chuck Leonard in scenario 51. This scenario, although 12 turns long, usually plays quickly duwe to low piece density. Chuck's Russians are charged with assaulting the German held city (Graybosh) while protecting the other two cities against a somewhat mobile German force.
The Russians got off to a slow start as the Germans threatened Zabvenia early with the motorized assault guns and loaded infantry. On Turn 4, the Germans got a little too cute with their threat as the Russians completely surrounded a loaded Skdkf/234 loaded with an infantry unit in a gully hex south of Opustoschenia. The following turn saw these two units killed, which put a little hurt on the Germans. Chuck's Russians started their assault towards Graybosh a little later than should happen in this scenario. By Turn 9, the Russian cavalry units had not yet reached the city. Unfortunately for the Russians, they lost three of their cavalry units to overrun attacks, which ended any hopes of taking the needed city. Bert's victory returned him to the verge of successfully defending his title.
The Final was plaed using Scenario 45. This was the same scenario that Bert had played the previous year to win his title. The opening turn saw the Russians swarm Opustoschenia in the hopes of trapping the Germans that start in that city. The Germans killed only four Russian units on the opening shots of Turn 2 but the halftrack (not loaded) did escape the city. Rather than head towards the other Germans through hex Z9, the halftrack headed to the slope hex at N2.
The Russians fired back and killed nine units -- all of the remaining units in the city -- on their second turn. In addition, the halftrack that had escaped was surrounded at hex N2 and killed on a subsequent turn.
Alan's Germans had chosen to not defend the gully chokepoint hex at Z9. Instead, he had most of his troops huddled in the woods hexes around Y3 through Z5. The scenario, which is five-action packed turns, required the Russians to quickly execute their attack against the strong group of guns and infantry in those woods hexes. The assault had to be done with mostly tanks because the infantry had unloaded to assault the city in the center of the map on the initial turn.
Bert had left his two SMG's loaded on the initial assault so they were in position to be dropped off near the defenders in the woods by Turn 3. Meanwhile, the Russians cleared out the big gun at CC6 and the defenders left in Zabvenia. As the Russian tanks approached the woods, Alan was able to increase his kill total to eight dead Russians. This meant that going into the last turn, both players thought that Bert needed to kill four German units to reach 17 kills for the decisive victory.
The direct fire attacks at 4-1 (+1) once again avoided the dreaded '6' and Bert was able to kill four German units. As the two players were discussing the game and what could have been done differently, they realized that only 16 German units were dead. Bert still needed to kill one more of Alan's units to earn the victory that he thought he already had won.  As it turned out, he had set up one additional attack against a unit in case he had rolled a 6 on one of his direct fire attacks. This attack, against a dispersed German unit was a 1-1 (-2) CAT attack. Since the defender was in the woods, it was a +1 modifier but since the unit was dispersed already, we were back to a ­2.
This meant that the final attack came down to a roll of 1-3 and Bert would win his second consecutive title and a roll of 4-6 would see Alan secure his first championship. Final roll ... 50/50! The die rolled out of the dice tower, seemed to take an extra turn, and finally settled on a 2-- game over. Both players quickly shook hands and another very exciting and tense tournament had ended. One couldn't ask for a more closely contested Final. It was a classic ending to one of the classic two-player tactical wargames.

 GM      Bert Schoose [1st Year]  NA   NA

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