tigers in the mist  

Updated 11/26/2010

2010 WBC Report  

 2011 Status: pending 2011 GM commitment

Mike Mishler, CA

2009-10 Champion



Event History
2000    Ray Freeman     16
2001    Robert Mull     19
2002    Rick Young     14
2003    Ray Freeman     16
2004    Tom Thornesen     17
2005    Tom Thornsen     18
2006    Ray Freeman     17
2007    Bryan Eshleman     18
2008    Bryan Eshleman     19
2009    Mike Mishler     16
2010    Mike Mishler     16

Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Ray Freeman        CA    10    196
  2.  Mike Mishler       CA    10     96
  3.  Bryan Eshleman     NC    10     92
  4.  Jim Winslow        ME    09     90
  5.  Tom Thornsen       NY    10     85
  6.  Rick Young         NC    10     73
  7.  Brad Jones         FL    09     60
  8.  Robert Mull        CO    01     36
  9.  Murray Cowles      uk    02     32
 10.  John Ellsworth     IL    08     30
 11.  Ric Sciacca        FL    08     22
 12.  Jack Morrell       NY    01     15
 13.  Bob Hamel          CT    08     14
 14.  Dave Wong          NJ    10      9
 15.  Mark Kolenski      MA    09      9
 16.  Eduardo DeNucci    ag    04      9
 17.  Dave Schubert      MD    03      9
 18.  Raymond Hall       IL    00      9
 19.  Nathan Trent       VA    05      6
 20.  Jim Kramer         PA    05      6
 21.  Bill Hodges        VA    03      6
 22.  Larry Hiemenz      MD    04      3
 23.  Aaron Silverman    NY    00      3

2010 Laurelists                                          Repeating Laurelists:

Ray Freeman, CA

Ric Young, NC

Dave Wong, NJ

Bryan Eshleman, NC

Tom Thornsen, NY

Past Winners

Ray Freeman, CA
2000, 2003, 2006

Robert Mull, CO

Rick Young, NC

Tom Thornsen, NY

Bryan Eshleman, NC

The game's designer and GM, Ray Freeman, schools Mark Kolenski.

John Sharp gets a lesson from two-time champ Tom Thonsen.

Four Rounds to Glory

Although at least six people attended the demo at the new 5 pm time for this long out-of-print game, not one of them played in the first round. Nevertheless, we did have two new players this year, but this remains very much a closed club as illustrated by five of the six laurellists being former champions.

Round 1: Top seed and defending champ Mike Mishler beat newcomer Chris Storzillo Chris's Germans never really got going. Two-time champ Bryan Eshleman lost to John Vasiliakos, who played the US. Three-time champ Ray Freeman, seeded third, was held to a draw by Mark Kolenski, back for his sophomore season. Mark's Germans got off to a decent start on the 16th. On 17-1, two bridge demolition rolls went the Germans way, including a disastrous 10 on the Lullange bridge where Ray had an engineer. The position seemed so shaky the US stacked up Bastogne and left Martelange open. On 17-3 Mark made strong attacks at Bastogne, Vielsalm and Noville, all of which held, but US casualties were high. Bastogne finally fell on 18-2, and the 19th saw German successes across the map.

The American demo teams continued to do poorly, as the Ourthe River Bridge was crossed without incident on 20-1. However the line then stabilized and the tide swung to the US. Mark was unable to make much progress on the 20-21 turns except to get into Marche with a 9-6 attack on 21-1. On 21-1, with 4 SP still in Marche and the German threats elsewhere stopped, Ray counterattacked in Marche with six SP of the 84th infantry at 6-7. The Germans were ready and killed five SP!. Then on 22-1, Mark made a 10-5 attack and captured the town, securing the draw.

2002 champion Rick Young played a steady US and was never in trouble to defeating Dave Wong. John Sharp, seeded 10th drew with two-time former champ Tom Thornsen. John's Germans secured the draw by taking Marche on 22-1, in a game much like the one between Ray and Mark. Jim Winslow's Germans won against newcomer Joseph Belyeau. Bob Hamel's Germans beat Rich Phares with Bastogne falling on the 17th and Marche on the 20th. Nick Smith's Germans lost to Jim Kramer.

Round 2: Mike Mishler won a grueling game against John Vasiliakos. The game had to be adjudicated on the 20th. John had been doing well, but some fortunate die rolls by Mike and a bid of 1.5 for the Americans proved to be the difference. Ray got off to a ludicrously hot start thanks to deadly die rolling as the Germans against John Sharp and John conceded on 17-1 as Bastogne, Baraque, La Roche and Trois Ponts all fell that morning. I've never seen a US position so completely denuded so quickly in 14 years of playing this game. Rick Young's demolition teams were working overtime against Bob Hamel's Germans, blowing four bridges on the 17th. As a result, the wheels came off of Bob's offensive immediately and he never made significant progress. Dave Wong as the US beat Chris by holding on to Bastogne until the 21st. Tom's Americans managed to stop Mark's attack cold for an early concession on the 19th. Attrition now claimed half the field, leaving only eight players to continue into the third round.

Round 3: Mishler managed to defeat Young with some good die rolling late in the game. It appeared that Rick may have held on to Bastogne just a bit too long. Mike managed to run Rick out of units at the end to score a breakout win, which was the only way he could have scored enough VP. Bryan Eshleman defeated Mark by playing steady defense after Bastogne held out until mid-day on the 19th. Dave Wong won as the US against Bob. Bastogne fell on 19-1 and Marche on 21-1, but that left Bob a VP short as there was no bid.

In another matchup of past champs, Ray Freeman's German's triumphed over Tom Thornsen. There was no bid and the German's only cleared Vianden on 16-1, and repaired no bridges. However, on 16-2, the Germans cleared three areas and repaired both bridges. Then three more areas fell on 16-3, including Marnach. Suddenly, there was a game. On 17-1, the US blew the first two bridges forcing Ray to use the Grief teams at Lullange. But then the dice went completely feld grau and Ray cleared six areas. 17-2 went Tom's way except for one battle, a 6-1 at Longvilly...critical as it turned out. On 17-3, Ray made a 5 to 1+1 at Bastogne. Tom whiffed and Ray killed both defenders to take the town. Tom was forced to counterattack on 17-3 but was unable to recapture the town. Ray then attacked Bastogne heavily on 18-1 while trying to crack the rest of the US line. Tom came back with a 10-7 in the key crossroads on 18-1 but only killed two steps while losing six. Ray's other attacks on the 18th were shot to pieces. On the 19th, Ray again pounded Bastogne but failed to make much progress elsewhere. Without hope of getting the Bastogne VP back, Tom conceded. The fall of the town early was absolutely critical as the German army was by now a complete wreck. Of his original force and reinforcements from the 17-18 turns, the Germans only had two 3 SP units on the map, 11 2 SP units and 22 1 SP units.

Round 4: At this point, Mike was 3-0 and guaranteed no worse than second place, but Dave could score three with a win, and Ray had 2.5. The last pairings were Mike-Ray, Bryan-Dave, and Mark-Bob. As the Germans, Hamel got off to a decent start, but Bastogne held until 19-2. Bob was able to get across the Ourthe River and take Neufchateau on the 19th, but needed something extra to win. Marche fell on 21-1, creating possibilities, but Bob was unable to score another VP and Kolenski held on for a close win.

Wong's Germans had a tough start against Eshleman and the game was not in doubt after a few turns as Bryan was able to hold Bastogne into the 20th.

The results of the other games meant Mishler and Freeman were playing for the top two places. Ray took the Germans as Mike bid 1.5 for the US. Ray started hot, clearing four areas and repairing the Marnach bridge on 16-1. On 16-2, three more areas fell, but two held against 6-1 and 5-1 attacks. On 17-1, the Germans cleared six areas, and the US was in serious trouble. Then things got weird. On 17-2 the Germans attacked Bastogne at 8-2 (two defenders) and killed only one. Then on 18-1 bridges at Sandrin and LaRoche blew, but Vielsalm fell. However, a 9-1 on Bastogne whiffed! If Bastogne has fallen on the 17th or 18th, the game would be over. Now, Ray realized that his offensive was completely stuffed in the south. On 18-2 the Germans attacked Trois Ponts (bridge did not blow) and Houffalize heavily. Although neither fell, US losses were high, and the 2nd SS was released. On 19-1 Baraque, Bastogne and Fauvilliers fell. On 19-2 Grandmenil fell but Trois Ponts (6-1) and Neufchateau (10-3) held.

It was looking rather bleak for the Germans at this point but a low odds attack at Ville took the space. Mike caught another break when his 40% shot at the Ouffet bridge succeeded on 20-1. Ray took Neufchateau and Hotton on 20-1, but a critical 9-3 at Sprimont failed. On the 20th, two German attacks vs a 1 SP unit failed at Transinne, and little attrition was gained by a heavy attack on Marche. On the 21st, German hopes were fading fast as another bridge blew. Two high odds attacks succeeded at Transinne and Baillonville, but a 5-2 at Ouffet failed and another attack on Marche (10-4) killed only two SP. Ray made desperate attacks on Ouffet, Wellin and Groupont, but only Grupont succeeded and US engineers blew the Wellin-Transinne bridge. When the Grupont-Wellin bridge blew on 21-3, Ray conceded and Mike had successfully defended his title.


German Wins: 6

American Wins: 12

Draws: 2

In 2009, the Germans won more games than the US.

Number of Games with Bids: 8 (all for the US)

VP Bid Range: 0.5-1.5

1 game at 0.5

4 games at 1.0

3 games at 1.5

In games between the top scorers, the record was five US wins, two German wins, one draw.

 GM      Ray Freeman  [11th Year]   NA
    Rayfreeman3@comcast.net   NA

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