atlantic storm 

Updated 12/16/2009

2009 WBC Report  

 2010 Status: pending 2010 GM commitment

John Elliott, MD

2009 Champion

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Event History
1998    Ric Manns      155
1999    Roy Gibson     116
2000    Bob Eastman     129
2001    John Coussis     126
2002    Robert Barnes     126
2003    Scott Buckwalter     140
2004     Rob Winslow     122
2005     Brad Jones     126
2006    Roy Gibson     121
2007    Steve Scott     118
2008    Bruce Young     124
2009    John Elliott     120

 Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
   1.  John Coussis       IL    08    102
   2.  Roy Gibson         MD    06    100
   3.  Scott Buckwalter   MD    03     96
   4.  Rob Winslow        NY    04     95
   5.  John Elliott       MD    09     84
   6.  Henry Richardson   VA    01     60
   7.  Bob Eastman        OK    00     60
   8.  Bruce Young        SC    09     52
   9.  Robert Barnes      WV    02     50
  10.  Ben Knight         MD    08     49
  11.  Pat Mirk           FL    02     45
  12.  Stephen Cuyler     NY    08     40
  13.  Steve Scott        CA    07     40
  14.  Brad Jones         FL    05     40
  15.  Gary Libby         RI    09     36
  16.  Marty Sample       NH    04     36
  17.  Andy Gardner       VA    03     36
  18.  Bill Place         PA    07     24
  19.  Carol Caler        OH    05     24
  20.  Eric Stranger      OH    99     24
  21.  Dan Mathias        MD    03     18
  22.  Josh Gifford       MD    00     18
  23.  Ben Collinson      MD    09     16
  24.  Rob Kircher        RI    07     16
  25.  Peter Reese        VA    05     16
  26.  Scott Fenn         MD    04     15
  27.  Jamie Tang         MD    02     13
  28.  Tom Bissa          MI    05     12
  29.  Stan Buck          MD    03     12
  30.  Peter Busch        OH    99     12
  31.  Ross Jones         SC    04     10
  32.  Rob Mull           CO    02     10
  33.  Dwayne Curry       OH    01     10
  34.  Carmen Petruzelli  PA    09      8
  35.  Craig Melton       VA    06      8
  36.  Ron Wuerth         VA    05      8
  37.  Cliff Ackman       PA    03      6
  38.  Kevin Brownell     ME    04      5
  39.  Jeff Heidman       NY    09      4
  40.  Matt Evinger       PA    08      4
  41.  Keith Hunsinger    OH    06      4
  42.  Justin Thompson    VA    05      4
  43.  Steve Squibb       PA    99      4

2009 Laurelists                                           Repeating Laurelists 

Gary Libby, RI

Ben Collinson, MD

Bruce Young, SC

Carmen Petruzellli, PA

Jeff Heidman, NY

Past Winners

Ric Manns, IN

Roy Gibson, MD
1999, 2006

Bob Eastman, OK

John Coussis, IL

Robert Barnes, WV

Scott Buckwalter, MD

Rob Winslow, NY

Brad Jones, FL

Steve Scott, CA

Bruce Young, SC

Ex-champ Bob Eastman reaches for a trick but fails to advance in the 2009 shark-infested waters of Atlantic Storm.

Reverend Keith, AKA "the voice of Slapshot", took over the GM reins as the event racked up its 12th straight 100+ entrant field.

Beware the Tie Breaker ...

Atlantic Storm (and its sequel Pacific Typhoon) continued to attract big numbers despite being out of print for 15 years and the one year (hopefully) hiatus of its long time, award winning GM, John Coussis.  The games still have a fierce following with over half of the 120 entrants playing at least two of the four heats. 40 individuals won a heat with only Stephane Dorais able to win a pair.  However, that did not help him make it out of the semi-finals to the last table.

The finalists were defending champ Bruce Young, Gary Libby, John Elliott, Ben Collinson, Carmen Petruzzelli, and Jeff Heidman. The later three were new to the laurel table, while the first two were repeating laurelists. Ben drew seat 1, but he was unlucky enough to have defending champ Bruce on his left, which put Bruce, in theory, in the best situation to counter Ben's plays. Strategically seated to Bruce's left was Gary, hoping to do better his 4th place 2008 wood. On Gary's left was John who had barely qualified for the semi-finals (winning on his 4th attempt). Had another qualifier appeared for the semi-finals, John would have been the odd man out. This was John's fourth time at the wood table, so he was more than ready to do battle. Carmen was a frequent participant making his first Round 3 appearance while Jeff made the cut in his first try. Jeff had demonstrated his skill in Pacific Typhoon but as a newcomer to Atlantic Storm, he was at somewhat of a disadvantage.

On the first round, Ben demonstrated to the others that he knew the game well by declaring surface and escorting a full 1940 convoy to safety with the Renown. The third round witnessed a substantial surface battle over one of the least important convoys in the deck-QP 11 (1942, Arctic, empty) - with everyone contributing something. The fight began when John victimized Gary's Edinburgh, but it was Bruce's King George V that won the day, and he shared spoils with Ben.

After the fourth round, everyone had victory points tucked away, but Ben was still in the lead. In the fifth round, Carmen daringly called a 1940 sub battle for HX 72 and played the Wolverine, which Gary defeated with Prien's U47 (the card that Wolverine is supposed to fate). Gary followed that victory by winning the next round - a sub battle in which everyone joined -thus pulling ahead of Ben. However, John won the next two convoys, which gained him 13 VPs for convoys alone, and he was now in the lead with an eight-card hand.

The tenth convoy, a 1940 battle for HX 84, got pushed into a second round that Ben won with the Hood. At this halfway point in the game, there was a close race for first place. Gary had 13 VPs in convoys (like John), while Ben had 10 VPs in convoys but had tucked away more spoils than the other two. Ben and Gary were playing with seven-card hands. The other three players at the table needed to find some serious magic if they wanted to be in this race. Bruce was looking for it, having ditched six hands already (he would flush nine hands by game end). Carmen and Jeff had discarded just as frequently, but only one card at a time, so they must have been holding something of merit and were just waiting for the right opportunity.

The ill-fated PQ 17 was the twelfth convoy, and Arctic Storm swept away most of the Allied defenders, giving Bruce the convoy in spoils. Bruce called an air battle for the following 1941 convoy (which is the suit Bruce called every time he was round leader) but no one could play except Gary. Carmen's King George V won the battle for JW 51B, and Ben refueled it with the Grey Ranger. The next battle was John's to select, and like the expert player he is, he called air for the full, 1941, 7-point SC 44. Carmen and Gary tried to fight him and had a slight advantage to win, but John rolled high enough to take the convoy and the spoils, thus gaining a big lead.

Two rounds later, Jeff called surface for a 1942 battle over 4-point ON 67, and he played B-Dienst. It was late in the game, and Jeff was hoping for his moment in the sun. Neither the Bismarck nor the Tirpitz had been seen on the table all game. Up to this point, Jeff had discarded twelve times, including ten consecutive rounds. He had to be holding something big. Ben brought out the King George V, which he had refueled three rounds earlier. Bruce  played the Harvester and Grey Ranger. Gary followed with Admiral Tovey, Rodney, and Sheffield. Carmen said he was ready to play German, and given that he never tossed a hand, he was probably holding something of consequence. Therefore, John played the Scharnhorst. On seeing this, Carmen couldn't resist and instead played the Duke of York to victimize Scharnhorst. So with no support on the table, Jeff discarded B-Dienst and Bruce refueled the ubiquitous King George V.

Could Carmen and Jeff along with John's Scharnhorst have outgunned the ships of Ben, Bruce, and Gary? The Allies had a total strength of 15 before Carmen played. There were 13 Allied VPs on the table, but Scharnhorst was a guaranteed 4 VPs for Carmen, and taking it meant that no Allied spoils (if any were to be had) would need to be shared with John. Who knows how things might have played out, but Jeff's great bid for spoils evaporated before his eyes.

The next convoy saw a large sub battle for the sizable ON 202, ONS 18. Ben started off with Ultra, and Bruce and Gary played German. John countered with a strong Allied force of three cards, and Carmen joined the Germans to fight against John. However, Jeff joined the Allies and stormed away Carmen's play. After a weak play by Ben, John took the convoy home. He was now so far in the lead that neither Gary nor Ben could catch him unless one of them could win two big battles in the last two rounds. They couldn't, and John showed that in his case at least the fourth time is the charm.

Steve Cameron and Kevin Emery bridge the generation gap at WBC.

It's all in the cards, or is this another Stein flush?
 GM     Keith Hunsinger  [1st Year]  NA
    NA   NA 

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