According to Wikipedia, the name Heffernan comes from a Gaelic word meaning demon. Our Josh Heffernan certainly played like a man possessed in yesterday’s Weasel Royale club championship game. Also, that beard of his does sort of make him look like the devil. Perhaps we should ask more questions about the time Heffernan spent in the Orient.
Anyway, despite Heffernan’s apparent supernatural aid, this game belonged to Nate "Beefy" Cockerill in the early going. And by "early," I mean through 1910. Yes, 1910!
Cockerill, playing France, held the lead in the winner-take-all championship from 1904 through 1910. The following year, he relinquished it to Heffernan in Germany. Even then, the game refused to end.
For three more years, the players slugged it out over the map of Europe, finally conceding the Bull Weasel title in Spring 1915 with Heffernan at 16 centers and threatening to solo. The final center counts were:
Austria (Don Glass): 2; 1.081 points.
England (Brad Harrington): 0; 0.000 points.
France (Nathan Cockerill): 2; 1.081 points.
Germany (Josh Heffernan): 16; 69.189 points.
Italy (Kevin O’Kelley): 0; 0.000 points.
Russia (Jim O’Kelley): 5; 6.757 points.
Turkey (Matt Sundstrom): 9; 21.892 points.
The supply center chart is here. I hope we’ll hear from the participants. In the meantime, here are some noteworthy items from our sixth annual Weasel Royale.
- At 13 years and nine days, Kevin is the Royale’s youngest participant ever. He swam with the sharks for a bit, too. He peaked at five after simultaneously dotting Austria and Turkey in Fall 1902. That same turn, Austria dotted him. Austria’s stab, although also only for one dot, was more decisive. Kevin was eliminated in 1906.
- Cockerill reached 12 centers in 1907, but was knocked right back to nine the following year. Thereafter, his grip on the game was tenuous. By the end, he was actively abetting the German win.
- Sundstrom was knocked down to two in 1902. He gained one in 1903 but would have been knocked right back to two in 1904 but for a gamble by the Russians that didn’t pay off. After that reprieve, his Turks ground their way to nine by game’s end.
- Glass was at eight in 1908, just one center behind the leader. He never got closer and finished with two.
- Heffernan was the fourth seed. Author and would-be horseplayer Ted McClelland can scoff all he wants about numerology, but that’s the fourth time in the Royale’s six years that the fourth seed has won the Bull Weasel title.
- Finally, ending in Spring 1915, this game was our second longest Royale. The 2010 championship ended during the Fall 1915 turn.