2016-2017 (Season 12)
Eric Klavoon claims 9th league title
Another great season is in the books! Eleven weeks, 37 players, 144 unique teams, and 1,152 total KanJam games played - In the end, one player was crowned champion of the 12th season (2016-2017) of the Buffalo, NY KanJam League. The league championship ultimately came down to a showdown between teammates from the 2-time KanJam World Champions, "Stallion Survivors." Heading into the final week of the season, Eric Klavoon held a six point lead over Jon Sandino for first place overall. After finishing one spot ahead of Jon in the final week, Eric Klavoon captured the league title for the second year in a row and 9th time overall. With Jon finishing as this season's runner-up, Eric & Jon become the third tournament team (Stallion Survivors) to finish #1 and #2 in this league. The prior teams to accomplish this feat were Dorkus Malorkus (Season 3) and Rebel Survivors (Season 6). Coincidentally, all three are former KanJam World Champions.
Without a question, the dedication and talent of all the players (both new and returning) is what makes this league so successful every year, providing a fun and competitive activity throughout the fall and winter. These are the types of players that break an ankle and still play (Josh Greenauer), or have shoulder surgery (Dana Misenheimer) and still return just weeks later. As always, this is a random-draw league, so players are randomly paired up with a new partner each week, which makes for different matchups week by week. For this reason, stats and standings are all individual-based for this league. This marked the third season utilizing two drop weeks (for points). There were a total of five new regular players that joined the league this season, and another seven as subs. And the "original six" all returned to play this season, these players having played in all 12 seasons of the league (Eric Klavoon, Dana Misenheimer, Josh Greenauer, Bob Greenauer, Tim Klavoon, and Phil Schneider).
Eric Klavoon started the season with back-to-back first place finishes, and never gave up the lead, holding onto first place in the overall standings all the way to the end. Eric was one of the most consistent players all season, as one of two players to not have a losing week. He led the league in wins (128), winning percentage (.727), and perfect games (21). In addition, he tied two others with a total of three first place finishes along the way.
Jon Sandino also never had a losing week, staying consistent throughout the season. No question, Jon put up the top performances of the season in Week 3 and Week 9 with a perfect 16-0 record in each of these weeks, something that had not been done in nearly seven seasons of the league (more on that later). Even with Eric having a large lead, Jon made quite a run in the second half of the season to catch up and make it interesting, going 42-6 over a span of three weeks at one point. As runner-up this season, he also finished second in wins and perfect games thrown, and also posted three first place finishes.
#1 Eric Klavoon, #2 Jon Sandino, #3 Josh Greenauer, #4 Matt Nelson, & #5 TJ Burns
Josh Greenauer finished third place in another great season, posting 10 or more wins in nine out of 11 weeks. He also had one first place finish on Week 4, and was one of four players this season to shoot five perfect games in one week. Josh racked up the third most wins and perfect games this season as well.
Matt Nelson (#4) had the greatest stretch of the season, at one point going 56-8 over a span of four weeks, which included 16-0 and 15-1 weeks. For awhile, it was a three-person race between him, Eric, and Jon before Josh passed him later in the season. Matt also put up three first place finishes this season, and he was the top player in overtime games, posting a league-leading .694 winning percentage in overtime.
In fifth place was TJ Burns, posting over 100 wins for the first time, including two Instant Wins along the way. TJ also finished fourth in perfect games thrown and had one first place finish when he went 16-0 with Jon.
There were a total of six players that reached 100 wins or more in Season 12. Eric Klavoon led with 128 wins, having reached 100 wins or more in all 12 seasons of the league. Jon was just one behind with 127 wins, which is his fourth time reaching 100 wins or more. Josh Greenauer put up 117 wins (11th time with 100+), Matt Nelson with 106 wins (3rd time), TJ Burns with 102 wins (1st time), and Scott Silverman got just enough in the final week to get up to 101 wins (3rd time). Coincidentally, this marks back-to-back seasons for Scott with exactly 101 wins.
There was a really close battle among the remaining players in the top 10, with only nine points separating #6 through #10. Scott Silverman finished at #6 with 168 points, followed by Kim Klavoon (#7) with 165 points. Dana Misenheimer and Bob Greenauer both tied with 164 points, but Dana finished one win ahead ahead of Bob to break the tie and land eighth place. And in a close finish to make the top ten, Sarah Burns tied with Evan Sardo with 159 points, but Sarah won the tiebreaker with two more wins than Evan to land #10.
Leading the league in perfect games this season was Eric Klavoon with 21, matching his total from last season, followed by Jon Sandino with 19. For both Eric and Jon, they managed at least one perfect game with 10 of their 11 different partners this season. Next best was Josh Greenauer with 16 thrown, followed by TJ Burns with 13 and Bob Greenauer with 12. For the entire league, a grand total of exactly 100 perfect games were thrown over the course of the season. This included at least one perfect game by 26 different players, including everyone in the top 18. Last season's record of the most perfect games thrown by the entire league in one week was broken. The prior record was 15, but on Week 7 this season, a total of 17 perfect games were thrown. While the team record of seven perfect games thrown in one night was not broken, two teams threw five perfect games (also on Week 7), and they were Josh Greenauer & TJ Burns and Bob Greenauer & Sean McManus.
There were no records set in Instant Wins thrown, but one player came close. Victor Bogado tossed three Instant Wins in one week, all over-the-top shots (Week 10). This was one shy of tying the record of four in a single week by one player. The season lead in Instant Wins was also three, a tie between Victor and Jamar Carroll. TJ Burns, Matt Lafferty, Kim Miller, Trevor Trethewey, and Derek Brifu all threw two Instant Wins on the season, while seven others each tossed one Instant Win.
Sarah Burns led with 60 overtime games played on the season, followed by Jon Sandino (54), Eric Klavoon (53), and Kim Klavoon (52). Sarah also led with 37 overtime wins, with Matt Nelson next best with 34, Eric Klavoon with 32, and TJ Burns and Evan Sardo both with 31. Matt Nelson was the top player in overtime, posting a .694 overtime winning percentage (34-15). The most overtime games played in one week was nine, and this was done by five teams: Kim Miller & Sarah Burns (Week 5), Eric Klavoon & Kim Klavoon (Week 9), Bob Greenauer & Adam Williams (Week 9), Jon Sandino & Evan Sardo (Week 11), and Alex Reinecke & Derek Schultz (Week 11). The best performances in overtime were Jon Sandino & Matt Nelson (6-0 overtime record), Evan Sardo & Matt Nelson (7-1), and Kim Miller & Sarah Burns (7-2). The longest game of the season happened in the final week in a match between Alex Reinecke & Derek Schultz and Chad Cowell & Matt Nelson. The game went to six overtime rounds before Alex & Derek won.
There were five weeks where there was a tie in record for first place. While head-to-head play did break the tie in most of these cases, two of them went to a tiebreaker shootout since the teams split their head-to-head games against each other. In a three-way tie at 13-3 in Week 5, a tiebreaker shootout was held for first place. Bob Greenauer & Derek Schultz scored the most points to claim first place in Week 5 over Eric Klavoon & Matt Nelson and Kim Miller & Sarah Burns. The other shootout for first place happened on Week 10 with two teams tied at 11-5. Kim Miller & Tim Klavoon beat Evan Sardo & TJ Burns in a tiebreaker game to earn first place that week. While not for first place, there were two instances of a four-way tie in record; one that happened on Week 2 (for 7th place) and another on Week 10 (for 5th place). The first was broken by a four-way shootout, while the other week had head-to-head play determine the top and bottom teams of the group, while the middle two teams played a tiebreaker game.
Before this season started, a prize was announced for the first team to go undefeated, something that had not been done since Season 5. On Week 3, the streak was finally ended when Jon Sandino & Matt Nelson went 16-0, including six of their wins in overtime and one perfect game. In doing so, they each won a $15 gift card of their choice and their half of the team registration fee waived for the upcoming 2017 KanJam Klassic this spring (4/29/2017). It took exactly 70 weeks of league to do it, spanning almost seven full seasons since the last time it was done. However, it would not take that long for it to happen again, as TJ Burns & Jon Sandino went undefeated on Week 9 as well. TJ & Jon threw three perfect games among their perfect 16-0 record, marking the top performance of the season. This was the second undefeated week for both players (both of Jon's were this season, while TJ also did it back in Season 5). Matt Nelson almost came close to a second undefeated week this season in his pairup with Scott Silverman in Week 6. Matt and Scott went 15-0, but lost the very last game of the night to end their bid. They still went 15-1 with three perfect games to claim first place that week. And in the first week of the season, Austin Matteson & Eric Klavoon went 15-1 with four perfect games for one of the top performances this season.
This season also saw three players record their first weekly top finish. Sean McManus, Evan Sardo, and Kim Miller all recorded a first place finish for the first time in league. Sean went 13-3 in Week 2 (with Eric), Evan went 14-2 in Week 8 (with Matt N), and Kim went 11-5 in Week 10 (with Tim).
While there were no records set in total number of Instant Wins or perfect games thrown this season, there are new records for the total most games played and most overtime games played in a season. Here are the totals by season, with this season (12) highlighted in yellow:
This season averaged about 13 teams (26 total players) each league night, with Week 3 matching the prior largest league night from last season with 15 teams (30 players). Also, even with drawing random partners each week, there were a few instances of current and past major tournament teams that got paired up this season:
- PHILorkus (Phil Schneider & Josh Greenauer) - Week 2
- The Heroes of Kanton (Adam Williams & TJ Burns) - Week 2
- What The (Brian Schultz & Derek Schultz) - Week 2
- Stallion Survivors (Eric Klavoon & Jon Sandino) - Week 7
With conclusion of this season, Jon Sandino and TJ Burns have now played enough weeks of league to qualify for the all-time league overall standings (minimum of 60 weeks). Also, Dana Misenheimer became the fourth player in league history to record 1,000 wins in league, accomplishing this feat on Week 10 to join Eric Klavoon, Josh Greenauer, and Bob Greenauer. Scott Silverman came close to joining that club, but came up five wins short. For certain, he will become the fifth player next season. Check out the updated all-time overall standings here.
Thanks go out to all the players for another successful season. This cannot be possible without their dedication, week after week. Of the regular players, 23 of them competed in at least 9 of the 11 total weeks. The league set records in the total number of games played (1,152) and total number of overtime games played (311). They also surpassed a major milestone of over 10,000 KanJam games played over the course of 12 seasons! Once again, The Apex has provided a great location for this league, marking the 6th season for the Buffalo, NY KanJam League at their facility. Special thanks goes out again to Erik Arneth for helping coordinate the use of the facility each week.
|Winning %:||Eric Klavoon||0.727|
|Instant Wins:||Jamar Carroll
|Perfect Games:||Eric Klavoon||21|
|OT Games Played:||Sarah Burns||60|
|OT Wins:||Sarah Burns||37|
|OT Winning %:||Matt Nelson||0.694|
|First Place Finishes||Eric Klavoon