ADDED TO LADDER New Ladder Report Submitted

Will S

FGM Colour Sergeant
West Coast, USA
Match Winner: Will S

Match Loser: Pinchy

Was the result a Draw? No

Combat Mission Version: CMBN

Comments on the Battle:

This was a medium purchase probe QB. Holland Sept '44. Pinchy requested to defend with German forces on a map that had lots of wide open space. Will S attacked with American forces.

Map was very open and flat, with the sole objective being the small town of "Best". The attack had to go across several hundred meters of farmland and crop fields. A few groups of trees and some farm buildings provided American troops a bit of cover for overwatch, but assault forces had to cross very open and exposed ground to take the objective. I found this map challenging and fun. Conditions were day, dry, hazy.

A Co (Rifle) and D Co (Weapons) of 1st Battalion infantry were tasked with securing the town. Armor support consisted of 5 Shermans (two 76, two 75, one 105) and 2 Stuarts from 2nd Armor. Not much was known about German forces, although given the open terrain it was likely to consist of ranged Armor and AT assets supported by infantry and artillery.

D Co objective was for initial recon and to set up Mortars, MG's, and Snipers, providing overwatch and fire support for A Co assault. D Co HQ teams were quick to notice 2 German AT guns and some MG positions setup in front of the town along dirt roads between crop fields. Mortar fire put these weapons out of action before the main assault moved forward.

3 Pltn along with 4 pltn mortars made the initial advance on American right flank through fields with tall crops. A small dip in the terrain provided the advancing men a bit of cover. As they came over the crest of their shallow ridge up to the first dirt road, contact was made with dug in Germans. Mortars put effective fire on German foxholes, and a third AT gun but advance was slowed when multiple Panther tanks positioned behind town buildings made their presence known in a violent manner. One Stuart was KO'd while a Sherman took a hit but survived and fell back behind the gentle ridge. Casualties were taken by the forward most infantry teams, who quickly sought cover in the tall crops. The rest of 3 pltn spread out and stayed low as plans were made to overcome the intimidating German armor.

With the right flank being inhospitable orders were given to attack the town directly up the middle of the AO. This route was through wide open recently plowed fields with little to no cover or concealment available, but did offer an advantage of putting buildings between the advancing infantry and German armor. The two 76 Sherms, plus the HQ and 105 Sherms re-positioned to just in front of the farm complex where 2 Pltn was awaiting their assault. If the Panthers wanted to sight them up, they would have to take a chance against all four. The 75 and 105 engaged the front row buildings of Best while battalion mortars began sending HE and WP rounds into the town. The 76's stayed ready to engage any exposed German armor. After a few minutes of heavy fire, orders were relayed and 2 Pltn made their move, fast and deliberate across the field followed close by the Shermans and behind that came 1 Pltn with Co HQ.

2 Pltn made it to the first dirt road in tact but that was soon to change. As they came within 100m of town right flank teams were engaged by German armor and took heavy casualties while center teams were pinned down by small arms fire from the buildings. Sherman support helped push the remaining Germans from the first buildings and 3 Pltn was able to take cover behind stone walls and in a small field of tall crops. As the smoke started to clear Sherman crews saw German armor positions, engaging them at 100-150m. KO 2 Panthers, 1 Marder and immobilized 1 Panther. Once German armor was taken out remaining German infantry started to fall back, and the ones who tried to fight were put down.

Meanwhile, as 1 & 2 Pltns came even with the dirt road, 3 Pltn resumed their advance on the right flank. The 75 Sherm was KO'd by a Panther as it positioned for a flank shot on a Panther, and the Stuart was KO'd by the Marder as it made a dash toward buildings which had been reached by infantry teams. Despite losing all its armor support, 3 Pltn did make it into their objective area, engaging and pushing back a few teams of German infantry while doing so.

German command surrendered as American forces pushed into Best and German tanks were no longer of use.

Good Game Pinchy. Fun and challenging.