ParaRifle Co, 3/504 vs 362. Infantrie Division

Allies: 6 | Corky272
Axis: 1 | Ertle

ParaRifle Co, 3/504 (Fearless Vet, 2755 points)
Company HQ (w/3 bazookas, w/1 sniper)
First Platoon (2 squads, w/bazooka)
Second Platoon (2 squads, w/bazooka)
Parachute Machine-gun Platoon (4 M1919 LMGs)
ParaMortar Platoon (4 M1 81mm mortars)
Tank Platoon (2 M4A3 Shermans w/Improvised Armor, 2 M4A3 (76mm) Shermans w/Improvised Armor)
Tank Destroyer Platoon (4 M10 3in GMC (late) w/Top Armor 1 & Improvised Armor)
Para Field Artillery Battery (4 M1A1 75mm pack howitzers)
Corps Field Artillery Battery (4 M1 155mm howitzers)
Anti-aircraft Artillery Platoon (2 M1 Bofors & 2 M49 quad .50 cal AAGs)
Naval Gunfire Support (Light Cruiser)
Priority Air Support (P-47 Thunderbolt)

362. Infantrie Division (Confident Vet, 2755 points)
Company HQ (w/At section, w/3 snipers)
Grenadier Platoon (3 squads)
Grenadier Platoon (3 squads)
Grenadier Machine-gun Platoon (4 MG42 HMGs)
Grenadier Mortar Platoon (4 12cm sGW43 mortars)
Grenadier Anti-tank Gun Platoon (2 7.5cm PaK40s)
Heavy Tank Plt (4 Tiger I E)
HG Panzer Plt (4 Panzer III M, 1 w/concertina wire)
Rocket Launcher Battery (3 21cm NW42 launchers, w/AT section)
HG Heavy AAG Plt (2 8.8cm FlaK36, w/extra crew)
Limited Air Support (FW 190F)

Italy Campaign Mission Situation: Padiglione Woods (woods, railroad overpass)

Our table was dressed in accordance with the “Operation Fischfang” mission from page 20 of “Italy Battles”. The mission rolled up was “Encounter”. After deployment, the Germans rolled to attack. This was a fierce battle of wills, with the Germans suffering heavy casualties including the total loss of 5 platoons as well as their Commanding Officer, while the Americans suffered mild casualties including their Executive Officer.

The Allied Commander built his Parachute Rifle Company from “Road to Rome.” The Axis Commander built his Grenadierkompanie from “Dogs and Devils.”

After our last engagement at Padiglione, both commanders wanted a decisive victory, with definitive control of both the factory and the road to Anzio. The Allied Commander knew that the Nisei had fought hard and realized they were a turn from victory, but wanting to utilize every tool at his disposal, he sent the Nisei back to the rear, and called forward the ParaRifles of the 504th to finish the job.

Likewise, the German commander realized that his mountain infantry were not being used to their full potential, so he sent them back to reinforce the interior, and called forward a reinforced grenadier platoon of the 362. Infantrie Division.

A massive battle, one which would last for 8 hours and 40 minutes over the course of 3 days, lay before the commanders. The German Commander deployed his objectives in the factory and just beyond the railroad underpass, while the American Commander deployed his objectives deep in the Padiglione Woods, and along the northern road to the factory. Knowing that he had superior firepower, the American Commander dug in his artillery, called in his naval gun fire and air support, and used his First ParaRifle platoon to taunt the Germans. Displaying typical German arrogance, the German Commander deployed his ground troops and rockets, attempting to swarm and overwhelm the American position.

Though the forces were matched, this battle would not be fought as fiercely or violently as the German Commander intended. This fight was a battle of wills and a war of attrition and the American Commander knew that it was only a matter of time before victory was his.

The first four rounds of combat stalemated with the infantry from both sides advancing only slightly beyond their deployment zones. The First ParaRifles elected to dig-in and go to ground, to keep the Germans focus occupied on them while the American artillery rained down death and mayhem on the rest of the German forces. The Germans, falling prey to this scheme, did just that, concentrating all their efforts, albeit to no avail, on routing out the Americans. With absolutely no air support and the American artillery safely behind the raised road, the Germans were helpless against the American artillery.

Turn 5 however would soon break the spirit of the Krauts while reinforcing the Yankee fighting spirit. The Germans rejoiced as their Tigers arrived from reserve and proceeded to creep to the front lines to engage the Americans. Unfortunately for them, in a concentrated effort of fire power, the Americans destroyed all four Tigers headed their way.

Unbelievably shocked, and disbelieving that their prize fighting machines were so easily dispatched, the Germans scrambled trying to organize a second offensive to press on the Americans. Their anger intensified and vengeful focus on the American artillery, the newly arrived Panzers from reserve advanced and assaulted the American guns. While the Panzers would contest the objective, with victory in their sight, a successful counter assault kept the Americans fighting.

Turns 9 through 11 witnessed the proverbial straw which broke the German’s back. Although they had to fight bogging in the woods and on the rail line, and through constant harassment of German anti-tank fire, the Shermans, Tank Destroyers, and 155s fought to reinforce the American lines and made waste of the Panzers. In his haste to seek vengeance, the German Commander had left the northeast objective undefended. The Tank Destroyers and Shermans both double-timed on this prize with no more panzers to stand in their way.

In a last ditch effort, the German Commander committed a frenzied assault on the dug in Americans on the western border. Pushing forward, and pulling the Americans out of their fighting holes, the Germans fought hard for three rounds of assault combat before being forced to fall back and ultimately fail their morale. On Turn 12, the morale did not just fail for the German grenadiers, but for the German Commander as well. He knew that he had been beaten, and conceded a 6-1 victory to the Americans.

Allied Losses
Executive Officer
First ParaRifles (2nd Lt, 6 fireteams, 2 bazookas, 2 LMGs)
Second ParaRifles (1st Lt, 2nd Lt, 4 fireteams, 1 bazooka, 2 LMGs)
Tank Destroyers (2 M10s)
Parachute Field Artillery Battery (OIC, observer, 1 “75”)
Corps Field Artillery Battery (1 “155”)
ParaMortars (OIC)

Axis Losses
Commanding Officer
Grenadier Platoon (OIC, 6 fireteams, 2 HMGs, panzerschreck)
Grenadier Platoon (OIC, 6 fireteams, 2 HMGs)
Rocket Launcher Battery (3 NW42s, OIC, observer, PaK40)
HG Heavy Anti-aircraft Gun Platoon (1 “88”)
HG Heavy Tank Platoon (4 Tiger I E)
Panzer Platoon (4 Panzer III M)
Mortar Platoon (1 tube)
Anti-tank Platoon (1 PaK40)