Friday night, we once again returned to the Normandy Bocage to complete the 1230 Hours CG Turn of Purple Heart Draw.
Turns 3 and 4 had left my Fallschirmjaeger in desperate straits. For the first time in the CG, the Americans were almost completely in control.
The Germans were on the ropes and hoping for the bell to ring to end the round.
Turns 5 and the US phase of Turn 6 would be rough...but the remnants of my once proud force would survive...for at least one more CG Turn.
The US forces under Big Kansas would continue their advance along the east edge and deep into the center. By the time they rolled us out of Turn 6, three of the 4 Crossroad Victory Locations would either be under direct US control or threatened by it.
CG Turn 1230 Hours would be the turn during which my opponent finally pierced my lines and effected a breakout.
Now we welcome Malcolm Rollrite, Professor Emeritus of ASL University as he walks us through the conclusion of CG Turn 1230 Hours.
A look at the American line as we began Turn 5. At this point, the US forces were completely past the gully, upon which my defensive hopes had been anchored. I remain dismayed by how easily the gully was ultimately traversed. I had really hoped it would be more of a barrier than it proved to be.
Big Kansas' Americans were consolidated and in most cases under concealment in preparation for exploiting the success of Turns 3 and 4.
The first moves came on the western front, where the German roadblock continued to hold the road...which was better service rendered than I had from most of my troops.
The Sherman tried for WP, but rolled too high. It next tried for smoke and successfully smoked my MMG in J29.
The other bogged Sherman tried to unbog and instead rolled immobilization. A lucky break for the Germans.
My 8-1 officer successfully manned the HMG beside the roadblock and would give an excellent accounting of himself throughout the remainder of the battle. Meanwhile US troops surged forward around the roadblock and into my hanging left flank.
The third Sherman moved successfully through the bocage in support of the assault through the center. This CG Turn represented the best tank-infantry integrated assaults utilized by my opponent. For the first time, the Shermans did not operate independently. This allowed them to support the US infantry squads from positions of safety and out of the reach of Germans LATW's.
My failure to eliminate any of the Shermans in CG Turn 3 will no doubt haunt me in the 4th CG Turn.
The one remaining bright spot for the Germans was their successful defense of the road in center-east section of the battlefield. It was also the one area, where German squads were more numerous than the US squads facing them. The bulk of the US forces had moved to the far east edge and would flank this German concentration.
The survival of this pocket of Fallschirmjaeger was critical to allowing the Germans to continue the fight in the upcoming CG Turn 1530 Hours.
In the German phase of Turn 5, there would be one final German success. My 8-1 officer manning the German HMG by the road block would manage to KIA 2 x US half-squads, and DM the remaining half-squad at the Roadblock and H27. The dice were kind with a snake-eyes and a 3. A Knight's Cross was successfully earned.
This officer would also destroy the HMG in the US Phase of Turn 6 to keep it from falling into the hands of the AMIs...who already have far too much of my equipment.
My pocket of Fallschirmjaeger in the center-east found themselves being pressed from two sides. Some careful movements helped keep them intact and the US forces from closing in on them.
On the far east edge, the US forces were successful in securing their first Crossroads Victory Location. A really devastating moment for me as I had really hoped to keep the US off all of the VC's until at least the 4th CG Turn. But the reality was that I simply didn't have the forces to cover the east flank and especially after the Stug was brewed up in Turn 4...the barn door was completely open.
Professor Rollrite points out the porous nature of the German defense.
The Sherman operating along the east edge also successfully traversed the bocage and lent support to the US advance.
Some of Big Kansas largest troop concentrations moved with the east flank advance.
Back on the western front and roadblock, the Germans held on as the US forces slid to the west and moved forward once more.
Having established control of the first Crossroad Victory Location, the US forces moved to secure Zones of Control which will be essential as we begin the 1530 Hours CG Turn.
The final positions of the US forces at western front. The Germans are definitely in trouble.
Regaining our ELR and giving a good fight in the 4th CG Turn will be a priority.
I'm going to hope so...
But...it does seem a tad unlikely...
So we conclude the 1230 Hours CG Turn and give this round decisively to the Americans.
The US forces will now be focused on finishing the job in the 1530 Hours CG Turn.
This concludes our presentation by Prof. Rollrite. Join us next week for a look at how not to lose...(I had better watch...cause man do I need to figure that out!!!)
Next up CG Turn 4 - 1530 Hours.