Latest patrol started with a quick refuel stop in the Solomons, then departed NW to a patrol zone. Almost immediately I ran into a couple of merchants (one Nippon) and sank them. Caught a Kisigari DD a little after that.
Crossing the Bismark Sea, jumped a convoy of 6 with two escorts, W at 5kts. Just a Shimushu and an Eorotufo (? looked like Parker's Tin Can). The convoy had two more Nippons and 3K-4K size vessels. First attack I quickly put down two Marus, and took out the Shimushu as it camped behind to wait for me.
Did an end around and caught the remaining 4 merchants, now weaving unescorted, with the other escort back looking for me. Took out two more with my last 4 bow torps. Swung around and got off the last 4 aft torps at the remaining two. Took out one. Just as I was firing the last torp...ping ping ping. I honestly still thought he was 4 or 5 miles behind. He was 1200yds. I had taken too long setting up for the last two, trying to flank them and get another perfect 90 shot.
45 minutes of tough, deep maneuvering later, and my first career with a Balao is over. Very humbling.