Photo courtesy of Darren Finger.
CHIPPEWA FALLS, Wisc. — To help celebrate 150 years of brewing beer in Chippewa Falls, Leinenkugel’s sponsored the Leinenkugel’s 150th Anniversary Kubb Tournament on Aug. 12, 2017. The tournament took place on a picture-perfect, sunny, 80 degree day at the Northern Wisconsin State Fairgrounds.
The day started with group play where the 18 participating teams were divided into four groups. Groups A and B consisted of five teams and groups C and D had four teams. Each team played three qualifying best-of-three matches and the results were used to seed the 16 team championship bracket, which included two play-in games. The eight teams winning in the round of 16 moved on in the championship bracket, while the eight teams losing teams filled out the consolation bracket.
In the championship bracket, Kubbitz (Dan Drumm, Jeff Gibson, Riley Radcliffe) took out worthy opponents on the way to their first tournament win. It started with a three game defeat of Damage Incorporated (Darren Finger, Scott Forster, Gregg Jochimsen) in the quarterfinals. In their last turn in game three, with the game tied, Radcliffe drilled six kubbs and Gibson blasted down five. Gibson then followed that up with a field/baseline double to set up Drumm to get the last baseline kubb and Radcliffe to topple the king.
Kubbitz moved onto the semifinals to take on the Ringers (Aaron Ellringer, Dave Ellringer, Ethan Forney). Both of these teams have met on the pitch many times, and both have been able to claim victory over each other for the better part of the last five plus years. Drumm and Dave Ellringer have been playing kubb since it was first introduced to the Eau Claire area. On this day, Kubbitz was red hot and advanced with a 2-0 victory. Radcliffe’s drilling was in line with some of the best of the day and Gibson’s blasting ensured that Drumm and Radcliffe took primarily 8 meter throws all day.
The other semifinals featured Tyr’s Tre (Eric Anderson, Scott Graham, Cory Shay) against BBC (Casey Anderson, Brian Evans, Brian Winistorfer). Winistorfer described the match as fun and intense, saying “BBC was dialed in on 8 meter shots.” BBC took that match 2-0.
In the finals, game one had BBC striking first, but Kubbitz stayed the course and was able to steal the game. With eight kubbs in play, Kubbitz was able to knock down the final 8 meter kubb and the king with the final two batons to win. In game two, Kubbitz started two-for-two at 8 meter kubbs, only to have BBC come back and strike down three baseline kubbs themselves. With five kubbs in play, Kubbitz was able to clear the field kubbs and Drumm went two-for-two on the baseline. Riley clipped the last baseline kubb and was throwing at the king for a perfect game. Radcliffe stated, “Well this is Kubbitz and that just can’t happen. So as it goes, I missed the king.” BBC added one more baseline kubb the next round followed by two more king misses by Radcliffe. Kubbitz got one more turn and Drumm hit an amazing long double and the king for the win. Kubbitz won 2-0 over BBC.
Tyr’s Tre won the third place match over the Ringers 2-0.