Croquet News 2023 – Tournament Winners

Advanced-Intermediate Hi-Lo Snake-in-the-Grass

Winners – Peter Rassenti and Robin Duncan

Intermediate Pairs Croquet Tournament

It was an honor and privilege to host the Intermediate Pairs Croquet tournament on Saturday, July 22, 2023. Perfect weather, at least in my opinion, and the wonderful camaraderie made for a wonderful tournament.    

Nine intermediate players came out to challenge their peers in what turned out to be an exciting tournament.    Joining me in the tournament:  Angelina Flath, Mike Skene, Martha Pennock, Mike Pennock, John Harris, Norma Alison, Michele Aylward, and John Binsted.

The tournament consisted of a three-game round robin with a final and consolation to determine first, second, and third. 

The results:

1st placeMartha Pennock and John Harris
2nd placeNorma Alison and Sandy Hodel
3rd placeMichele Aylward, Angelina Flath & Mike Skene
4th placeMike Penock and John Binsted
John Harris and Martha Pennock

2nd Sandy Hodel & Norma Alison; 3rd Mike Skene, Michele Aylward & Angelina Flath

Thank you all for participating and making this a very good competition and a fun day.  All participants played well. (contributed by Sandy Hodel)

Hi-Lo Novice-Intermediate Tournament

Today, July 4, 2023, we held the Hi-Lo Novice – Intermediate Croquet Tournament. It was a successful tournament, and despite the heat, all seemed to enjoy themselves.

1st Place – Edie Potvin and Michele Aylward
2nd Place – Justin Aldhouse and Martha Pennock
3rd Place – Mike Pennock and Marcel Potvin
4th Place – Annette McCandlish – Bob Vander Steen – Annette celebrates her first successful jump shot – look out all!

1st – Michele Aylward and Edie Potvin

Congratulations to the winners and to all who competed – it was a very
interesting tournament and all played well!

Contributed by Sandy Hodel

Advanced DoublesTournament

With the support of our cheer leaders, seated after their efforts, Peter & David won. 

Contributed by David Whiting

The cheering section.
Winners – Peter Rassenti and David Whiting

Open Club Ladies Croquet

See write up and more photos on this event here

Victoria Day Croquet Tourney Showcases Top Players Third Win for Portland’s Steve Scalpone

Four days of nonstop Association Croquet filled Victoria’s downtown croquet courts from May 19-22.  Twelve competitors from across the US and Canada faced each other in 61 hard-fought singles games lasting around two to two-and-a-half hours each.  At the end of the last game, Portland’s Steve Scalpone was the last man standing.

The field of entrants was one of the strongest ever seen for this annual event, featuring Canada’s top-ranked and third-ranked players — Ontario’s Brian Cumming and Victoria’s Chris Percival-Smith — and highly-ranked Americans Rich Lamm (Colorado), Scalpone, and Michael Albert (Florida). 

In the end, the contest came down to games between Cumming and Scalpone.  The championship playoff required all contestants to lose twice to be eliminated, and on the final day, Scalpone had lost once and Cumming not at all.  If Cumming lost the first game, he’d take the trophy.  But Scalpone took him down 26-9, leaving them both with one loss and another game to play.  Again, Scalpone played effectively, hitting 50-foot shots with alarming accuracy, and came from behind in the last turn to win the final game and the tournament 26-23.  Rich Lamm finished third.

Association Croquet is a game played on an 84 x 105-foot grass court set with six unforgiving metal hoops and a central stake.  Each player has two balls and must take both balls through each of the six hoops in one direction, then in the opposite direction before hitting the central stake.  With two balls earning 13 points each, the maximum score is 26 points — the first player to earn 26 wins the game.  In time-limited games like those played in the Victoria Day tournament, the player with the higher score when time is called is the winner.

In addition to the high-powered visitors to our fine, local croquet grounds, the tournament drew several BC players:  Michael Dowling and Pierre Dunn from the Victoria area; Tony Simmonds and James White from Saturna Island; Brian Wasylyk from Campbell River; Russell Uhler from Vancouver; and Michael Kernaghan from Mission.  Some boasted of improving play and looked towards a bright competitive future; others complained of poor performance — but still insisted on looking at the future with hope.

The weather was excellent, though a bit windy on Sunday.  What really made the difference was fine lawns maintained by excellent groundskeepers at both the Victoria Lawn Bowling Club and the Canadian Pacific Lawn Bowling and Croquet Club.  In fact, one of the stronger players remarked that the lawns were almost too good, since they allowed less-experienced players to play well, and didn’t force them to overcome the obstacles that less-well-maintained lawns provided for separating the cream from the milk.

 Many of the competitors remarked after the event that the kitchen staff, headed by Victoria’s Annie Boldt, did an outstanding job of providing great food throughout the competition.  Since no time was allocated for sit-down lunches, and players could only grab a few bites here and there between turns on the court, Annie’s crew faced an unusual logistical challenge, and met it effectively.

The support provided by both clubs was excellent, and the efforts of all the volunteers were much appreciated.

(contributed by Pierre Dunn)

Victorian Croquet Players Defy Wind and Rain to Place High in 2023 Croquet Fools Tourneycontributed by Pierre Dunn, 4/8/2023

Two of Victoria’s top Association Croquet Players finished in the top four at this year’s Croquet Fools tournament, held at Portland, Oregon’s King City Lawn Bowling Club March 30 – April 2.  In addition to Canadian #3 Chris Percival-Smith (a member of CP) and Pierre Dunn (a member of both CP and VLBC), the solid field of players included Portland’s Patrick Sweeney and Steve Scalpone (who also finished in the top four), Idaho’s Peter Bach, Washington’s Gary Anderson, Colorado’s Ron Eccles, and Portland’s Curtis Toops.

Play began at 8:00am every day and continued until the sun was setting, giving each player three 2-hour games per day, mostly played in wind, rain, and hail.  After a full round-robin of seven games, the top six finishers were seeded on the third day into a double-elimination ladder.  After the first round on the final morning, the weather took over and play was abandoned with three players left in contention: Sweeney and Scalpone had one loss each, while Dunn, with no losses, was leading the competition.  Percival-Smith took his second loss in that first round of the day, so was out of contention with a fourth-place finish.  At this point, Sweeney and Scalpone will have to meet again to determine who will face Dunn in the final.   The final will be one game if Dunn wins, but if he loses the two contestants will be tied at one loss apiece and a tiebreaker will need to be played.

Upcoming AC tournament action in BC this year will include the Croquet South Island’s Victoria Day tournament from May 18-22 (contact <> for info) and the USCA’s Western Regional AC Championship at Vancouver’s West Point Grey LBC, August 24-27 (contact <> for info).

lawn bowling, croquet, social