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Feb 5th, 2022 Wood Shed Axe Throwing Youth Axe Tournament Winners

Tournament Side A Winners: 1st place Cole, 2nd place Nolan, and 3rd place Isaak
Tournament Side B winners: 1st place Kaede, 2nd place Joey, and 3rd place Iliana

Saturday February 5th, 2022 and 24 young axe throwers gathered to compete in a tournament for the ages. It was no coincidence the event was held on Coach Trevor’s Grandmother’s Birthday. The day would be remembered for years to come. It was almost a normal feeling as the restrictions from two long years of COVID were in the process of being lifted.

Wood Shed Axe Throwing in Sylvan Lake was the host. The stage was set. Boards were wet, axes were sharpened, projector lenses polished, and AC DC was blaring the warm up music. All were ready to let the steel fly and challenge their opponents in the friendly game of axe throwing.

The day was off to a great start, and youth were getting their practice throws in. Many experiencing the generosity of end grain block targets for the very first time. The digital scoring and moving bullseye had a mystic feeling, almost as if you were one with not only the axe, but also the lane and target. Steel meets wood and crowd cheers, the perfect combination for the day.

A brief review of the rules for all the competitors and all that was left was to say as Bruce Buffer “It’s Tiiiiiiiiiiime!”

Qualifying Rounds

The qualifying consisted of each of the 24 athletes throwing 4 games of 10, and their individual scores being tallied, creating the seeding for the knockout. Everyone was equal, same boards, same bullseye, holding an axe, 40 throws. The only thing that was different was the skill of the thrower, and each had a chance to prove their accuracy.

Qualifying completed, and we had ordered lunch from one of our lane sponsors, Dominos Pizza, which was devoured by the hungry steel chuckers. At this point, the scores were tabulated, the top 12 would compete on the A side and the other 12 on the B side. Just like a great 80’s mix tape, 12 pieces of art on both sides.

Double Elimination Tournament

The double elimination format has the top players from each side playing a lower ranked player. Similar to the 2006 Stanley Cup run of the Edmonton Oilers, where they were ranked 8th and played the first place Red Wings. Reminder, the Oilers beat the Wings, then the Sharks, and Ducks, before losing in game 7 to the Hurricanes, but just like Bruno, we don’t talk about that. As the players progress, they are still in the tournament and have a chance to move on until they have lost two matches. Each match consisted of the first to win two games, with a lane switch in each game. I, as a lifetime Oilers fan was hoping that there were a few examples of the 2006 team that could create an upset or two.

There are two ways to get to the final, one you never lose, and two, you lose, then have to compete against many others who have lost and win each match. The person who does lose early, may have to play 7 matches to win, that is a lot of throwing, a possibility of 21 games in a short period of time. Hydration is of vital importance.

The Results

Our finals featured both ways. Keade lost his first match on the B side and was bumped down to the loser bracket, where he needed to win to stay alive. Joey won all his games, and made it to the final after 4 wins. Keade needed to play 5 matches, all facing elimination before being able to challenge for the final. The throw down was epic. Nobel steed vs steed. Close games, and Kaede took the first match. Now they both had one loss, the next match would determine the winner. With pipes burning, adrenaline pumping and eyes laser focused, Kaede was able to conquer and be declared the champion.

The A side had Cole who was successful in every match verses Nolan, who made the trip from Airdrie to compete. Both worked hard to get to the finals, but in the end, Cole was too accurate on this day and took the championship 2-0, to remain undefeated the whole tournament.

It was a great day and seeing the youth smile, compete, and work for success has us excited for the next event on April 9th.