Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Crown #86

I must admit to feeling a bit discouraged. I fought well, but I did not accomplish three of my five bench mark goals. I did advance from my pool, and I did go five rounds, winning more fights than I lost. In total, with the smaller pools, I won seven fights and lost five. In the end, I was frustrated by four things I thought I was prepared for. The format did hurt me. I only lost two sword and shield fights, but i lost both my pole arm fights and my one two weapon fight. My endurance was good, but a long fight in the 4th round is part of why I lost in the 5th. (that is counting the pool as round one) I was having trouble getting people to take my blows throughout the day, both cuts and thrusts. And I still had trouble with the northern region fighters with their huge shields. These are all things I should do better at.


There were five people in our pool, myself, Jabril, Julien de la Point, Wolfir, and a two sword fighter named Asa.

I challenged Jabril first, knowing he was the toughest in my pool. I managed to take his leg and hit him. Against Wolfir I hooked the top of his blocking spear and hit him in he face. Julien killed me with a face thrust. Itook Asa's leg then finished her off with a body thrust. the pool ended in a three way tie between me, Julien, and Jabril. After Jabril killed Julien I hit him with a simple saber cut. Jabril and I advanced.

My first fight was against William McCrimmon. After a couple of tries I took his leg and then I hit him with a butterfly in he arm pit. I threw it with kind of a half step of. Wrap fake, kind of like Ed's version, but with a shield hook and without stepping all the way around.

Next I drew Gregor. Our first fight was with pole arm. I fought with a left hand lead, so our poles were in line instead of crossed. I tried to strike along his pole but did not commit enough. It was a good long fight and I felt good about it. It was my choice for the next fight and I chose two weapon. It is not a form he uses a lot, and I felt it gave me my best shot. We both used two swords, but I had thrusting tips. It was a good fight. I tried a couple different techniques.

I tried a high-low strike but he stepped out of it. I was defending his attacks very well.

I tried the Bellatrix attack I learned from Radnor 30 years ago. The Bellatrix two sword style is based on cross blocking. Right hand will block right hand strikes, etc. so you are cocked for a strong strike with the left. Radnor taught a patterning technique, where you strike right-left-right-left-right-left setting up a pattern where you are crossing sticks kind of like Morris dancers. On the 6th and 7th strike you block with the left hand twice, then strike down the middle with your right hand. Unfortunately, Gregor was jam blocking instead of cross blocking, so it didn't work.

Then I started using my Milwaukee technique, jam blocking, cross blocking to guard my head and double striking. At one point i struck left hand, right hand, cros blocked his shot at my head, then double struck right hand toward his head left hand toward his body. I was very proud of that exchange, but he baled out.

Later he stepped in and wrapped taking my left arm. My one sword was no match for his two and I dropped into the losers list.

I fought Damien Von Drachenklau in a long fight. He always fights me hard and this time he was all over me. He launched an extensive flurry and I defended it well. It was intense but a bit wild, and eventually he opened his head up and I hit him.

Then I got mugged by Edward MacGuyver. I always have trouble with him, but this time I was embarrassed. Our first fight was with pole arm and that was where I made a fool of myself. He has one technique, no matter what weapon he is using. He bull rushes you and pushes you around with his body. With the pole arm he just jumped on me and tried to butt spike me in the face. He had be backed into a corner. I tried to bale out but did it terribly, spin away, ran away like a frightened little girl, and got hit from behind in the ribs. It was awful. In our second fight he chose sword and shield. His sword and shield style is about the same. He charges forward and shoves his shield into your shoulder and rains blows upon you. I noticed the he cocked his shield tip out as he closed, so I hit him with a belly thrust. We both chose sword and shield for the third fight. He adjusted by moving his tip inside cutting off that thrust. After a couple of passes he took my leg. That's when it really got hard. He walked in and just shoved me around with his shield. He pushed me over. I tried to take his leg but in doing so I fell over several times. Finally I gave that up and he hit me.

The list itself was fun. It was clean and exciting. Gregor won on the day after his 50th birthday, which is encouraging. With the way it was set up, with neither semi finals nor finals going past three fights, we did not see a shield in either round. I had a really good time, and loved most of my fights. It was a long and expensive drive, and well worth it. It was also great to see Tux, hang out with Bill and his squire brothers, see Alethea, and to fight.

Tux said I was looking tired from the middle of my fight with Damien onward. I certainly felt it before my first sword and shield fight with Edward. She said by the time I got to my first sword and shield fight with Edward my hip mechanics had left me. Alethea said I looked like I was in pain, and although I didn't feel hurt while fighting, my shoulder was sore after the round robin. I think in a standard list, without weapons requirements, I might have gone one more round.

In spite of these problems, this was a great list for me and for everyone. I loved fighting in it.

This was the 86th crown tournament that I've fought in. My next time in armor is likely to be next Wednesday at Nutley. If next eastern crown is the first Saturday in May as usual, I will miss it for a wedding in Cali (so I am hoping it will be early like this crown was). I may fight in West Kingdom crown in March if Obidiah allows me to.

It is 88 days until Birka.

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