Saturday turned out to be an absolutely perfect day for kubb in downtown Minneapolis at the picturesque Marquette Plaza. Teams of all skill levels gathered to celebrate kubb on the Nicollet Mall. The day kicked off with group play starting at 10am and a very tough early match between Goofy Kubbers and Regicide. In what became a preview of the finals match, Goofy Kubbers took the match 2-0 thanks to the very good drilling from Evan Fitzgerald. Newcomers and fan favorite Klassy Kubbers learned the game on the fly having played only once before. They proved beyond a doubt how fun it can be just learning the game of kubb. In the other group, Team Meh cruised through group play with Micah and Lee playing lights out kubb. Garrick Van Buren (normally of Kubbchucks) playing as The American Facial Hair Experiment found his team, once again, in a few hourlong grinder matches but managed second in the group behind Team Meh.
Teams fanned out through downtown for lunch as the Pizza Luce Block Party kicked off nearby and the sun crawled it’s way up the tiered pitches. A few big names in the kubb world were seen playing a friendly or two before teams gathered to start knockout play. The #1 vs #4 games went as expected but not as quickly as one might have thought. The Klassy Kubbers didn’t look intimidated against Team Meh and The Queens of kubb held their own against The Goofy Kubbers before both #1 seeds advanced. The #2 vs #3 games were very well played and pretty evenly matched. TAFHE again found themselves grinding out a long and well earned victory over Kubbic Zerconia (known to most as the Lakerol Originals). In the other #2 vs #3 match Regicide outlasted The Kubbler Elves, a very good team that has improved a lot and will be a team to beat at future tournaments.
While teams battled it out on the pitch, Minnesota Kubb designer and artist Sarah Wray created the trophies live on site. At Minnesota Kubb we pride ourself on unique trophies highlighting the talent of local artists and this was no exception. With a variety of supplies and tools at her disposal – players, volunteers, and spectators watched as Sarah created the unique trophies throughout the day. Sarah chose a theme reflecting the urban nature of the tournament – using street art influence to stencil and paint the trophies.
The semifinals kicked off with a match between Regicide and Team Meh that could have been the finals had the bracket played out differently. Both teams were highly skilled and the match reflected that all the way through. Regicide were able to eventually break through winning 2-0. In the other semifinal, Goofy Kubbers outlasted TAFHE and the finals were set.
Goofy Kubbers and Regicide moved up to the waiting Championship Pitch on the top tier of the Marquette Plaza and the finals were underway. The match showcased Evan Fitzgerald, one of the best inkastres in the nation against Dave Ellringer and Cole Vryens, two of the better blasters around. Evan and Braden played great kubb several times hitting clutch doubles with their 6th baton. On the other side the story was Josh Dibley who set up Dave and Cole extremely well all match long. Drilling for the first time in a final, Josh stayed cool under pressure and was the difference helping Regicide capture the first annual Minnesota Kubb Open in two games.
It was a great day to play on the Plaza and we’re looking forward to returning to the space for future events.