NorCal Regional Mixed Triples II

Yesterday my gang and I went to Sonoma to partake in the 2018 NorCal Regional Mixed Triples. My accomplices were Tamara aka (the Pétanque Queen) and Santa Claus (Noel) in civilian clothes.

By Vang

We arrived around 8:00 am as instructed by the VOMPC pamphlet and found very few people on the field. Little by little the participants trickled in and around 8:30 most of the contestants were present. The number was rather small (12 triplettes) but the caliber high.

  1. Mike Cooper/ Hans Kurz/ Lisa Vaughn
  2. Peter Wellington/ Teri Sirico/ Bill Miller
  3. Joe La Torre/ Sandra Sirkey/ Mark Shirkey
  4. Manu Le Bihan/ Janice Bissonnette/ By Vang
  5. Ed Porto/ Liza Moran/ Chan Alberto
  6. Peter Mathis/ Beth Lysten/ Wolfie Kurz
  7. Tim Wetzel/ Kris Edwards/ Rob Houghton
  8. Erin McTaggart/ Mike Meneffee/ Steve Dudgeon
  9. Alain Efron/ Tamara Efron/ Noel Marcovecchio
  10. Maryanne Curley/ Phominik Lee/ Poe Lee
  11. Kevin Evoy/ Holly Sammons/ Dave Lanter
  12. Carlos Couto/ Maggie Lane/ Brendan Cohen

As usual, 3 timed games were played before lunch and in the afternoon people would battle for Concours and Consolante glory.

On our 1st game of the day (against Joe La Torre) we got lucky and we won 13/6. An auspicious beginning.
Then we faced a bunch of cutthroats (the Mathis gang) who slaughtered us 13/1.
Finally (against Hans Kurz and his pack) we managed to win 13/11, and this meant only one thing. In the afternoon we would play in the Concours and tangle with the Big Guys.

In the Concours we faced Erin McTaggart and her posse and they beat us 13/5. This very team by the way made it to finals.

As I always said, pétanque keeps you humble. When you defeat another team, don’t crow too high because chances are that you will probably be whipped by another team soon after.

And in pétanque, like in any other sport, you need to have Lady Luck on your side. Without her assistance you are always walking a tight rope.

In the Concours finals, Manu le Bihan, Janice Bissonnette and By Vang faced Erin McTaggart, Mike Meneffee and Steve Dudgeon.

The match was played in the pebble-strewn area adjacent to the picnic area. This is a difficult terrain, especially for people who are not familiar with it.

In this area, it is hard to point and difficult to shoot. To point well, you need to master the art of “plombé” and to shoot efficiently you need to fire “au fer”. If you are not proficient in any of two these methods, you are in big trouble.

By Vang, Janice Bissonnette, Manu le Bihan

Le Bihan, Bissonnette and By Vang defeated McTaggart and her team by the impressive score of 13/1.
Both teams played well, but the Sacramento team kept the pressure on and prevailed. As I keep repeating, “pétanque has a way to keep you humble.”

1st place: Manu Le Bihan/ Janice Bissonnette/ By Vang
2nd place: Erin McTaggart/ Mike Meneffee/ Steve Dudgeon

1st place: Maryanne Curley/ Phominik Lee/ Poe Lee
2nd place: Kevin Evoy/ Holly Sammons/ Dave Lanter
3rd place: Ed Porto/ Liza Moran/ Chan Alberto


Don’t forget to watch the pictures.

Henry Wessel

Henry Wessel

Henry Wessel passed away last night in his sleep.

I just heard the terrible news and I am absolutely stunned. Henry and I played together two days ago and I never suspected for a minute that he was in such a dire state.

I have known him since he joined the club in 2012 and we sympathized almost immediately. He was eager to learn the game and was a very good student. In practically no time he rose to our club’s cream of the crop.

He and Calvert (his life partner) were great pétanque players and delightful people. Calvert always was an extremely talented pointer and Henry was a great shooter. Together they formed a fearsome combination that reaped many awards.

Henry was a renowned photographer and taught at the San Francisco Art Institute for many years. He was also a modest man who never bragged about his many accomplishments.

He was an active board member of La Pétanque Marinière and he did a lot to beautify and maintain our field.

Henry always struck me as an intelligent, learned, kind fellow and I like to think that he thought of me as a friend. He often asked me how to pronounce some French words and I was pleased to oblige. I am grateful that Calvert and him were part of a circle of companions that have blessed my house from time to time.

Calvert and Henry formed a great relationship on and off the field and I have clumsily maybe offered her my deep, heartfelt condolences. I was too distraught to find the proper words.

Henry, a great guy who left too soon and who will be sorely missed.


Please look at some pictures of my dear friend Henry Wessel

Summer League 2018

The Summer League season ended last night… in complete darkness. We are grateful by the way to Ken Lee who used a flashlight to assist stragglers complete their match.

The Concours ended way before La Consolante and when La Consolante finally produced a winner, most of the people were gone.

Let’s not forget that the Summer League and the Fall League are the brainchildren of our good fairy Brigitte Moran.
The proceeds of both tournaments will go toward the purchase of a night lighting system that will allow fans to play late evenings games.

I usually find a moment to snap a few pictures, but during this tournament I had very little idle time. I managed to take some photos August 1st (at the beginning of the tournament) and a single shot last night.
The pictures of the winners were all taken by Brigitte Moran.

This tournament (like all tournaments) was fun and I invite everybody to participate in the Fall tournament. You won’t regret it.

Jacques Gautier, Nick Davantes, Charlie Davantes, Liv Kraft

1st place: The Originals (Charlie Davantes, Liv Kraft, Nick Davantes with Jacques Gautier as a substitute for Charlie)
2nd place: Les Bons Temps: Brigitte Moran, Herb Moran, Leslie

1st place: Almite (almighty): Teri Sirico, Mireille Di Maio, Alain Efron


Check the pictures!