Goals for 2013 Kubb Season

2012 was the Kubbchucks freshman year of Kubb. It was only 8 months ago that we played at the Loppet tournament playing under our previous nom de kubb Kubbicle Nation.

The Kubbchucks competed in the Loppet tournament, US Nationals in Eau Claire and the Dallas 6-person tournament. One of the Kubbchucks, Jim, competed in the Des Moines Fall Klassic as well with his sister under the KubBernard banner. In all we look back at our freshman year as a success. We learned a lot and got solidly better at tournament play. While not being a contender for thin edge of the bracket, teams brought their A game and took us seriously on the pitch.

As we look forward to 2013 we have a fairly simple objective for 2013, to progress in the championship bracket. In Nationals and Dallas this year we got into the winners bracket from the round robin, but in both cases we lost in the first round going T-17 and T-5 respectively. Next year we will progress into that bracket.

This year we also solidified our positions. Garrick is our inkastare. Jim at blaster or cleanup thrower. I am the franchise thrower and occasional blaster as well as slayer. Garrick’s drilling this year improved leaps and bounds and he continues to focus on this discipline drilling dozens of Kubbs nearly daily. I will continue to focus on zen and stress free throwing of final batons at straggling field kubbs keeping opponents from advantage lines and bringing fury and fire to their baseline. I’ve focused on revamping my throwing style and adopting the Minnesota Step for more baton speed and accuracy.

2013 is going to be a great year for the Kubbchucks. I can’t wait to see you all on the pitch in February at the Minnesota Kubb Loppet Tournament!

Kubbchucks at 2012 Dallas Oktoberfest Kubb Tournament

Planet Kubb yard signs on display at Dallas.

The Kubbchucks had to go to the 2012 Dallas Oktoberfest Kubb Tournament. Why? Well, several reasons.

  1. Garrick, our team captain, had been in that area as a kid growing up in Wisconsin and had driven through Dallas once prior to this.
  2. Dallas adopted a 6-person team format. This was the first tournament to require 6-person teams in the United States.
  3. The Kubb Tournament is part of the Dallas Oktoberfest celebration, and those are always awesome.

Garrick and I talk about the 2012 Dallas Oktoberfest Kubb Tournament in our Open Loop podcast in Episode #4 – Enough Win For Everyone.

Team of 6?

From the Kubbchucks we only had Garrick and myself. Garrick’s son Cooper joined us for the day so we had three players. We also recruited Jake Freeberg, a Minnesota Kubb engine and longtime Kubb player to join our team. To fill out the rest of the lineup we had three baton throwers from Des Moines Kubb join our flank; Jeremy Harpold, Heather Woltz-Benz and Mike Farrell. They played great and we all melded really well.

So, I got up at 5:00am on Saturday morning to head out of town and play 6-person Kubb in Dallas, Wisconsin — population 356.

We arrived right on time for registration at 8:30am. We got situated and surveyed the pitch. For a tournament with so many people it sure seemed like very few pitches were set up. You don’t need so many pitches when everyone has 6 players! There were 14 teams registered but two dropped out at the last minute leaving 12 teams and over 72 players (some teams had seven players, just in case). This also gave Eric Anderson, the tournament organizer, a bit of a last minute challenge to redo the tournament format around 2 fewer teams. The round robin was modified to go five best-of-three matches, the first three in your group of three teams, the last 2 in the next grouping.

Players checking out the pitches and getting familiar with things in the cold October morning.

Round 1: Big Red Machine

The day started cold and the play on the pitch was pretty cold for the Kubbchucks in the first round. We went in agains Big Red Machine from Fox Valley Kubb. This team as the Kubb Snipers right in the center with other Fox Valley Kubbers filling out the team of 6 roster. The match went poorly for us. We lost 0-2 and the match was over in about 25 minutes.

We successfully shrugged off the lost and went into round 2.

Freshly made, warm off the griddle lefse. It was great. Super thin!

Round 2: Cynthia Plaster Inkastare

Round two we went up against our fellow Minneapolis Kubbers. This team was built around John Kubbar Mellencamp and I know those guys can throw some solid Kubb but there batons were pretty cool. We played strong and won the match.

Garrick enjoying one of the best brats ever.

Round 3: Hometown Kubbers

We got to play the one and only local Dallas team in Round 3. We took the first game pretty solidly, it was a lot of fun. The Hometown Kubbers were a fun team to play with. In the second game we got cold, they got hot, and we lost the game and gave the Hometown Kubbers there only win of the day. We closed out the match in the third game to take the win.

Round 4: Steve Feathers and the Shufflers

In Round 4 our games got long. Really long. We were excited to come 2-1 into Round 4 and take on our friends from Des Moines Kubb led by Steve Feathers. I think Feathers and the Shufflers may have had the most fun of any team at the tournament. We played for 75 minutes with the Shufflers and never completed even one game. We ended the match, called by time limit, 0-0 and we won with 2 kubbs on the baseline to their 1 kubb.

Round 5: Team Kubboom

We went into the final round of the round robin against the famed Team Kubboom. Team Kubboom also had two kids on their team so that matched off well with Cooper on our side. I can’t remember if we won the first or second game, but we traded the first to games 1-1. The 3rd and final game went on and on and we again got called on time with the Kubbchucks winning on baseline kubbs.

Round 4 and 5’s long games came around to haunt us in the end.

The bracket in a state of confusion.

With the round robin behind us it was time to figure out the seeding into the bracket. The Shufflers had already being written into the #1 seed in our group until we came over and reported our 4-1 record for the round robin. Turned out that Big Red Machine, Feathers and the Shufflers and the Kubbchucks all finished 4-1. We beat Feathers, and Big Red Machine was beat by Feathers so Kubbchucks were put in the #1 spot and we were beside ourselves on a #1 seed!

Then, we realized the Big Red Machine beat us. So, we had the triangle of three teams with the same record all having beat each other. So, then we count the number of individual games won and Red Machine had 9,  Feathers 7 and we had 5. From #1 to #3 seed. Boom.

Quarterfinals: Six Pack

Off to the quarterfinals we went. We were happy to be playing and we had to line up against Six Pack, a super team of The Beers from Des Moines Kubb and the Wolfpack. These guys have fire power. Our best tactic was our Des Moines teammate, Mike. He was great at talking trash at Chris Hodges. Alas, it didn’t work at all. Hodges laser focus blasted everything in its site. The Kubbchucks were never really in it. We took our lumps and exited the bracket after a 0-2 match.

We had a great time in Dallas! We will definitely be back next year!

Kubbchucks 2012 Logo

The Kubbchucks have taken the wraps off the logo for our inaugural Kubb season! Kubb is awesome and a ton of fun, and it’s only made more fun with an awesome team logo! We will be having this placed on some very highly regarded apparel for our trip to US National Kubb Championship.

Now back to the practice pitch! Melissa Pfingsten, a Sconnie mind you, put this great logo together for us working with our Team Captain Garrick. Thank you Melissa!

Twin Cities Winter Tournament 2012

Garrick signed us up for the Twin Cities Winter Kubb Tournament before we even knew what Kubb was. The invite to throw wood around in the snow was quickly accepted and the seeds of Kubb Fever were set.

Round Robin

We drew a round robin group with Kubb Snipers, Sporting Wood and 2 Pump Chumps. The matches in the round-robin were all best of three.

Our first round was against 2 Pump Chumps and I don’t remember what their actual team name was. The two guys were super cool and were very accommodating to our naiveté in regards to specifics of tournament play. You see, we had played the Mortal Kubb variation of the rules without even really knowing it. We also didn’t know about the advantage line, or at least I didn’t. We lost against them, if I remember 1-2.

Sporting Wood was our next team and they were not a tournament team. They had 6 players and were focused on having a good time, and we all did just that. We took them 2-0.

The third team in our round robin was the Kubb Snipers from Fox Valley Kubb. Chad and Chad are exceptional Kubb players and we went down quickly 0-2. With that said, it was a tremendous round because we really saw Kubb strategy being played out. These guys could drill, they were crazy accurate from the baseline and took care of the Kubbchucks quickly and easily, although I think we made it at least moderately difficult.

We left the round robing 1-2. I felt pretty good about the result though since Kubb Snipers and 2 Pump Chumps finished the tournament 1st and 2nd. We played the best in the tournament, and lost. But, that also shoved it straight into the consolation bracket.

Consolation Bracket

The consolation bracket was single game, not best of three. I’ve come to realize that this is a pretty tough route due to a potential bias for the team that wins the first throw.

The first round we opposed Settlers of Baton. It was a good game but we were consistently ahead through the entire match. We saw some interesting strategy from Settlers as they got behind on field kubbs, but we ultimately prevailed. The Settlers also got a punishment kubb against them in this match which was our first exposure to that.

We then took on the Kingdom Kubbers. Another good game but we stayed ahead the whole time. At this point we started feeling pretty good about our game with visions of winning the consolation bracket.

We then went to the quarterfinals of the consolation bracket and faced off against Zorbaz ON the Lake from Park Rapids, MN. We watched them play their round to get the quarterfinals and we were honestly hoping we were going to play the team they beat. Zorbaz team looked strong and they were. We tried to hold them but quickly dropped behind in Kubbs. The missed a shot at the king which kept us alive a little longer, but we ultimately lost. Zorbaz finished 2nd in the consolation bracket losing to NW MN Kubb.


The tournament was a great time. The location was great, Surly on tap was awesome and Eric Goplin did an amazing job organizing it all. It was a super time and we all enjoyed it so much that it solidified the Kubbchucks as a long running Kubb team that will be making many more tournament appearances.