Saturday, December 1, 2012

Nishnabotna River Pt. II

As the battle resumed, the situation was such that one of the bridges over the Nishnabotna had been crossed and the Union forces were pouring across the ford.  Only in the center was the situation still in hand.  For the moment the Confederates had an advantage in numbers across the river.  While they would never be able to attack across themselves, they might destroy the isolated forces on the near bank.

The remaining Reb cavalry began to mass on the right to try and delay or get an opportunistic charge in against the Yanks.  In the center the two brigades of Whither's division sorted themselves out from march column while Cheatham's division, already in line, dallied.

As the Yankees and Rebs began to exchange long range fire, two regiments and a battery from Donelson's usually steady men bolted at the first fire received.  (Damned "snake eyes")  The first of several unexpected and precipitous routs this night for the Rebs. 

Even when charging into the (refused) flank of the Yankees stalled without closing.  Small consolation was the elimination of a few Union stands and a regiment.  While some respite was gained by Yankee delays crossing the bridge and ford, the exchange of losses in the middle without coming to grips only served to aid the Union cause.  The Reb cavalry enjoyed some success finally on the right, running off or meleeing to extinction some units, the success only served to draw in the brigade of Whither's sent there.  They would suffer for their aggression later as the Yankees figured out how to utilize their numbers and threatened to cut off the brigade.

In the center a well-timed and executed charge pushed back Whither's other brigade and only a remarkable sequence of point blank fire coupled with a natural 24 on four dice stopped them.  Still, all hope of securing the bridge and ford was lost as weak dice and lack of aggression where it was needed doomed the Rebel cause.

Kudos to the Union forces for a well-planned and executed attack that while costly, was complete and total victory.  Tip 'o the kepi for Dan's imaginative scenario idea and to the players for patience and goodwill as the good/bad luck streaks ran.

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