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March Madness (MMS) WBC 2019 Event Report
Updated December 20, 2019.
47 Players Jeff Mullet 2019 Status 2020 Status Event History
  2019 Champion   & Laurels

Jeff Mullet Defeats Two Greenwood Teams to Capture Title!

For the first time in 16 years, this report is not coming from Terry Coleman who has kept this group of die-hard sports fanatics somewhat under control but definitely having fun on the hard courts. When Terry wasn’t sure of his availability for WBC, I was asked if I wanted to step up. So with assurances from my geek husband and sons to help, how could I not since this has been such a part of my WBCs for so long. We went to fixed brackets with pre-determined byes based on number of entrants at each heat with brackets made up for any number between 4 and 40 teams. In addition, we had 40 unique teams with team logos to select from at each heat drawn from the over 500 team database by Bruce Monnin

In Heat 1, we had 28 players. The top nineteen seeded teams were selected but with the tightly rated teams some players decided to go for lower seeds that appealed to them. This included Steve Raszewski taking the #40 seeded 2008 Xavier. He showed that this tournament was going to be wide open though as he defeated the #1 seed 1961 Cincinnati of John Shaheen 85-64 in the opening round. John was joined in opening round upsets as the #3, #5, and #8 through #14 seeds all went down. Three of the opening round games had winning scores over 100 and in the 2018 Duke (Pete Stein) - 1964 UCLA (Joe Birnbaum) game, both teams scored over 100 with Duke going down. Unfortunately, we did have one negative experience in the opening round as one player only losing by 12 points at half resigned to go play in another event.

The upsets continued in the second round with the favorite winning only 3 of the 7 games. The most interesting score was Danny Lewis’ 71-70 win over Steve Razsewski as that was the same score from his first round game. In the heat quarterfinals, Bruno Passacantando first three rolls were position resolves; however he overcome them and his 2011 Butler defeated Debbie Gutermuth’s 1976 Rutgers 70-60. He continued that theme in the heat semifinals when his first roll versus Danny Lewis was a resolve but pulled out the 87-76 win. On the other side, Don Greenwood had masterfully handled the #2 seed 1974 Maryland team past all the upsets with 64-48, 62-52, 73-65 wins into the semis against 1948 Kentucky of Chad Gormley. In the lowest scoring game of the heat, Maryland won 61-37. Bruno had had such good luck with those early resolve rolls, he continued it in the heat final with his first two rolls. Unfortunately in a nail biter, his luck ran out and Don Greenwood won the heat 82-81.

In Heat 2, 20 players showed. Once again the top seed 1957 North Carolina couldn’t survive the opening game as #34 seed 1990 Georgia Tech of Joe Birnbaum won 125-104. The other big upset was Ken Gutermuth’s #4 2015 Duke losing 74-50 to Owen Kyrollos’ #19 2008 Memphis. The second round saw the #2 and #3 seeds bow out as well. The #5 seed went out 96-86 in the only necessary quarterfinal game leaving Bryan Collars’ 200 Michigan State at #8 as the highest seed for the semis. Too bad the upsets continued as Debbie Gutermuth’s #12 2015 Arizona prevailed 78-75. In the other semifinals, 2008 Memphis took out Harry Flawd’s #10 1980 Louisville 72-65. Could Owen take out both Gutermuth’s in the same heat? It was not to be, as Debbie’s Arizona won 70-55.

In Heat 3, 26 players showed. For the first time this year, the #1 seed made it out of the opening round as Bruce Reiff’s 2001 Illinois defeated Max Jamelli’s #39 2015 Utah, 71-65. The highlight game of the round was a 111-110 double overtime win for Jeff Finkelday’s #5 2010 Kansas over Dennis Nicholson’s #27 1972 North Carolina. The upsets were back in the 2nd round as #1 lost as did #3 and #5. The bracket was thrown a curve ball as one of the players who won in the second round announced they were leaving to go play a semi-final in another game. An extra late round bye had to be granted. The heat semis matched up Joe Birnbaum’s #4 1979 Indiana State against Tom Browne’s #13 1963 Loyola Chicago and Jeff Mullet’s #10 1999 UConn against Dave Stiffler’s #16 2003 Kentucky. Tom pulled off the upset 107-98 while Jeff held off Dave 82-56. In the heat final, it look liked an NBA All-Star as no one wanted to play defense. Jeff won 110-107.

In Heat 4, only 14 players showed for a last attempt to make the Final Four. We will either move or drop this heat next year. We returned to this year’s norm of the #1 seed being beat in the opening round 108-85. Dennis Nicholson’s #17 seed 1977 UNLV beating Jeremy Billones’ 1956 San Francisco. We had a couple on upsets in the 2nd round #2 losing to #8 and #5 losing to #12. The first semifinal game matched Joe Birnbaum’s #12 seed 1988 Oklahoma with Dennis Nicholson’s 1977 UNLV coming off the bye. Joe’s Oklahoma prevailed with a 99-98 win over Dennis. Our second semifinal game was Henry Rice’s #3 seed 1966 Texas Western versus Don Greenwood’s #8 seed 2017 Baylor. During the first five resolves, Don rolled ones. But he was able hold Henry off and win 68-54. With this win, Don was on to the final for his quest to win two heats. Now it was up to Joe to make sure Don did not win a second heat. With the last roll upon us, Joe just needed not to roll a 1 and he wins. But the unfortunate thing happened, Joe rolled a 1. Don Greenwood won his second heat.

The first Final Four match up was heat one winner Don Greenwood’s 1974 Maryland team versus heat two winner Debbie Gutermuth’s 2015 Arizona. Debbie was down by 11 at halftime. She was able to score more than Don in the second half however it was not enough. Maryland beat Arizona 78-73 and was on its way to the Championship game.

Our second Final Four match up was heat three winner Jeff Mullet with 1999 Connecticut and heat four winner Don Greenwood with 2017 Baylor. With Don winning the first Final Four match up, all he needed to do was beat Jeff to have the opportunity to have his Maryland team play his Baylor team. But Jeff’s Connecticut team did not let that happen. They lead the entire game. Final score 78-66.

Now we are down to the final two, Connecticut and Maryland, with Jeff playing Don again. Connecticut played a very consistent game. Scoring 35 points in each half. Maryland played hard - too hard as two Terps players fouled out. Final score Connecticut 70 Maryland 53. Jeff Mullet is the 2019 March Madness Tournament winner.

2019 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 0
Don Greenwood Debbie Gutermuth Thomas Browne Bruno Passacantando Joseph Birnbaum
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th

Harry Flawd trying to defend his title.

Pam Gutermuth enters the action this year.

GM Carrie Lewis in heat action.

Debbie Gutermuth avenges Ken's loss to Owen
earlier in the heat.

Don Greenwood defeats Joseph Birnbaum to win heat..

GM  Carrie Lewis [1st year]  NA
 N/A  NA