Advanced Squad Leader scenario AP142 The Closer After Action Report
This is the second part of AP141 Currie’s Favor. Major Currie’s Canadian unit captured the town of St Lambert-sur-Dives, one of the last points where Germans units fleeing the Falaise Pocket could cross the Dives river. However, a lot of fleeing German units were not aware of it and continued to stream to the point.
Victory Conditions and Tactical Considerations
Twenty German squads, a Tiger, a Panther, two Panzer IVH and an armored car in three waves are pitted against 7.5 Canadian squads, 4 Shermans and a Firefly. The Germans can win by either exiting units or killing Canadian tanks at 2 VPs a piece in 5.5 turns. One of the challenges for the Canadians was that only the Firefly had enough punch (TK23) to kill a Panther (AF18) / Tiger (AF11) frontally. The other challenge was of course having to defend the board length where Germans could pop up anywhere in three waves. The good news was that Stream-Brush costs Infantry 5MF and Stream-Orchard costs them 4MF. The Grain fields would cost them as well so I weighted heavier on defending the Roads / Town Center.
After Action Report
German armor entered on Turn 3. Frankly I was surprised that most of the armor came in on the west (top of the map) where they might need to cross (and bog) in the gully. The Panther (probably because they expected my Firefly at the bridge) went with a lot of infantry to the east. The two Shermans to the west backed off a turn earlier as the Canadian infantry started to get overwhelmed. Unfortunately, the one on the extreme West didn’t get on the right side of the gully. Another Sherman got nailed when it tried to “speed” across in front of the Panther! (Note to self : it’s hard to flash large size tanks pass enemy guns.)
German Turn 4. The Tiger stopped by an killed the Sherman in the gully with a Bounding Fire shot! The PIAT team pulled off from the city center to help towards the west. It stood where the Bocage converges and withstood German attacks well til now. Down east the 10-2 PIAT team pulled back along with the Firefly and the Sherman from the eastern board edge. The Panther did a beautiful loop around the lone Canadian squad defending the road in G15 and got its gun trained on a Sherman. Unfortunately we couldn’t hit him with a HE shot. The Sherman spun around to get ready to leave in the next turn. Meanwhile in the middle one Canadian squad and two stacks of expertly done dummies held the Germans back.
In the Canadian turn that followed, the Firefly went for its sM but couldn’t get a smoke canister off to cover the Sherman. It went down to the northern edge to cover the exit where the German tanks to the west seemed to be heading. Too bad there wouldn’t be a Sherman covering its flank now. Major Currie’s PIAT team pulled off a “miracle” DI shot at the Panther though (quite understandable, isn’t it?) and Immobilized the monster. the Currie team then put itself in a positon to get concealed, get more coverage against the Panther’s main guns and a path where it could possibly close combat the vehicle. Unfortunately the last Sherman to the west got blown up by the Tiger and we were practically haemorrhaging Germans out of the Falaise Gap! The western PIAT team recovered from earlier German attacks but couldn’t pull off another “miracle shot”. The end of the scenario would see the German armor pulling back from going beyond the Bocage cover (and into the Firefly’s LOS) in favor of another route further west.
The Canadians resigned.
How’s this scenario interesting?
The Germans could either win by exiting enough units or by killing enough Canadian tanks. However, killing a Canadian tank only get them 2 CVPs vs 8 CVPs (10 with the Armor Leader) for a Panther, so the Germans really need to do a good job with combined arms. I, on the otherhand, need to play armor better. Spread out Shermans don’t stand a chance against a Tiger or a Panther. Perhaps I should focus my armor to one point after Turn 1 so as to converge on where German armor shows up in Turn 3?