SCANDIA, Minn. — Twenty-six hearty baton-chuckers proved it’s almost never too cold for kubb at the third annual Kubb Society Vinterfest Scramble in Scandia over the weekend. Temperatures were in the single digits as many players began the day at the nearby Scandia-Marine Lions pancake breakfast where the syrup was flowing and the sausage links were disappearing.
The batons began flying promptly at 10 a.m. for this scramble-style tournament. Throughout the day, each player earned individual points for wins and ties while playing with two to three randomly assigned teammates. Teammates were re-shuffled for each of the eight morning matches and then every player’s score was tallied. The top 12 individual players then moved on to the championship bracket with the remaining 14 competing for the consolation trophy.
The morning scores were tallied while players grabbed lunch at nearby Meister’s. Some preferred to remain out on the pitches, occasionally holding their slushy beverages over the fire to get them back to a more drinkable, liquid state.
Tim Motzko finished the morning in the top spot with a perfect 18 points. Brian Winistorfer (16 points), Drew Kutzke (15), Chad Stute (13), and Chris Baker (13) rounded out the top five. The cutoff for the top 12 championship bracket players ended up at 12 points.
For the prize-determining rounds, each individual player was again matched up with two to three teammates (the championship bracket consisted of three-player teams only). For these final round matches, the teams stayed constant to the end for four matches. For example, the morning-round number one finisher was teamed with the fifth and ninth-place finishers, the number two finisher with the sixth and tenth-place finisher, and so on.
Both the championship and consolation brackets consisted of a four-match round robin. As before, players accumulated individual points that were added to their morning totals to determine the final standings. Scoring for the afternoon matches was five points for a win and two points for a tie to create more separation in the standings.
The afternoon matches were graced with a bit of sun, and the end of the light snowfall that had begun earlier the day. Good cheer continued throughout the day as the weather and whiskey reddened the cheeks and spirits.
The end of the day found Brian Winistorfer in the number one spot for the second consecutive year. Chad Stute finished strong as well, in second place, with help from teammates Christopher Jones and Nick Brill. Taking third, and playing with Winistorfer and Tyson Batton, was Mr. Consistency—Steve Dolan (also a 2018 Vinterfest top three finisher).
The first and second place consolation bracket finishers consisted of teammates Joe Dekan and Dori Dufresne. One of the biggest winners of the day turned out to be Jones, who walked away with a great door prize, and a much-coveted fuzzy, blue Care Bear onesie suit. No need to pay for a Halloween costume this year!
Photo courtesy of Christopher Jones.