ADDED TO LADDER Ladder Report Submitted

Will S

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#1
NOTE - Submitted as a new thread in this forum; Not "submitted’ in the normal way using “Report a Ladder Game” button. Report a Ladder Match button still missing from upgraded forums at time of this submission.

Match Winner
Will S

Match Loser
Meat Grinder

Was the result a Draw? No

Combat Mission Version
CM Battle Normandy

Comments on the Battle
Large Purchase Probe QB. Map was a fairly expansive area of operation (maybe 1.2K squared?), two objectives of equal value. Consisting of rough hedgerows, crop fields, generally very rural, the only buildings were scattered farm complexes. Two paved roads led to each objective from the staging area, but the middle of the map was mostly road-less, with one wandering dirt road connecting farm buildings and providing field access. American (WillS) attack, German (MG) Defending. Special condition was no air assets, otherwise open purchase. Morning attack started early under the cover of darkness.

1st Battalion, A Co (rifle) B Co (rifle) D Co (weapons) with one engineer platoon, were tasked with overcoming German resistance in this sector. Armor support consisted of a mix of Shermans (75's & 76's and a single 105) along with four Stuarts. Intel on German forces was largely unknown but expected to be regular infantry in at least company + strength, likely battle hardened veterans. American command was briefed to expect Panthers, and as always, to be prepared for German artillery. Mines were a concern, especially along any developed road system. Although the Intel on the makeup of the opposing force was largely unknown, the commander in this sector was well known, having been faced before in a number of battles across the Normandy countryside. He is a keen fighter, known to be aggressive and make bold moves.

A Co had the eastern side of the AO, while B Co was assigned the western part. Assets from D Co were positioned centrally and/or divided to support the advance of each rifle company. Armor units were in two platoons and a Co HQ, able to be flexible and provide support as needed. The general battle plan was to have B Co advance through western fields, locate the enemy and set up in a screening position along major hedgerows on the left flank, covering for the assault of A Co. A Co would advance along the eastern road system to a group of buildings, then attack north crosscountry with the hope of splitting the defending force in half and exploiting the more open fields in the center of the AO. A Co would secure the eastern objective, and B Co would follow to secure the western obj.

It was not long after A Co scouts left the staging area that the sounds of German armor advancing broke the morning silence. The enemy was not far away. A Co troops entered the near cluster of buildings without any resistance, and waited as 1 pltn took position on the eastern flank. As 1 pltn entered the large fields they came under heavy German fire from the far hedgerows. This seemed like more than an outpost line. D Co Mortars, A Co Mortars and an Armor Pltn were all quickly brought up and given firing orders for the far hedgerows. 1 Pltn was able to advance with this covering fire, many Germans were found on the other side of the hedge and promptly killed. Estimate to be a full platoon. Right flank secure for the time being.

Meanwhile B Co had taken defensive positions along the western road and was cautiously advancing into some thicker fields and hedgerows near the center of the AO, meeting no resistance. Contact was made as a squad of Germans rapidly advanced through a hedgerow path right into the sights of waiting riflemen from 3 Pltn. Germans were KIA before they knew what hit them. At the same time a small team of Germans and a lone Panther made contact with 2 Pltn along the western road. They were aggressive, advancing into a strong American position. The Panther caused a few casualties but quickly became a target for bazooka teams, and was put down, although rather stubbornly. B Co continued their advance to their designated screening position, finding some resistance but were quickly able to put overwhelming firepower on most of the German positions. 3 Pltn met the stiffest resistance in the small fields on B Co's right flank, and took some casualties but was able to effectively maintain their objective. Western flank/screen secure for time being.

By this time 3 Pltn A Co had begun their advance north from the building cluster and quickly came under German fire, which including a Panther in position behind a tall hedgerow. D Co's 81mm mortars zeroed in on this area as did most of the allied armor. A incredibly intense firefight followed, with each side advancing, losing ground, advancing again for control of the area along a minor dirt road. Allied Armor lost four tanks in this area, but was able to immobilize one Panther, and eventually forced the other to fall back. 3 Pltn secured the south side of the road with heavy casualties with 2 Pltn relieving them and assaulting the north side of the road. The immobilized Panther made quite a problem for the American advance, although immobile it's gun was very functional and it was very hard for Allied armor to target without overly exposing their own position and very out of range for any safe bazooka position. This caused a major delay in the main axis of advance until American forces were able to move close enough and deliver a KO shot. Once the road was secure the fight moved to a corner and southern hedgerow of a large field on the right flank where remaining Germans along with one Panther had made a solid line of defense. It took a while to get an in to this area, but once it cracked, resistance crumbled and Germans were caught retreating in the open. The Panther made a last ditch solo attack, taking out two Shermans before the third and last finally got an effective hit (MG video). From this point A Co was able to advance on their final objective, overcoming remaining German resistance without major casualties. Engineer support was crucial in A Co assault on the dirt road system. Eastern Obj secure.

Once A Co had secured the dirt road region B Co continued with their advance toward their final objective. Stiff and effective German defense was put up along each major hedgerow in this AO, with support from one Panther. Working with armor support from two Stuarts and eventually two Shermans B Co was able to get fire superiority on the hedgerows and force the defenders to fall back. Engineers were running low on satchel charges in this area which slowed down the advance considerably. The Panther was intimidating, but once infantry support was neutralized it was forced to fall back as well, not being able to stand on its own. Once B Co made it into the objective, both from the front and with 3 Pltn making a flanking assault, the remaining German forces were killed. The remaining Panther, true to its brethren, made a charge directly into B Co's right flank but was hit by waiting bazooka teams, before eventually coming into the sights of a waiting Sherman and getting its death blow. Western Obj secure.

3 Pltn A Co (only HQ and 5 soldiers from 2 squad remained) along with 3 Pltn B Co (no HQ and 70% KIA/WIA) suffered the heaviest casualties of the day. 5 of 8 Shermans were KO and one of the four Stuarts. No Germans were left alive or mobile, and none surrendered.

Good Game as always MG. Looking forward to our next.
 
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Meat Grinder

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#3
My compliments on your very methodical, well executed attack. I definitely was over-aggressive with that early maneuver on my right flank. Was hoping to catch you distracted, but you are far too savvy for that. Good game. We'll play another one after I lick my wounds a bit. :)

Edit: I thought I would also point out that my infantry was having ammo shortages during the last twentyish minutes of the game. Several teams ran completely out.
 
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