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NSC 2009 Commentary: Round 14
Go to: Before the Tournament, Round 1, Round 2, Round 3, Round 4, Round 5, Round 6, Round 7, Round 8, Round 9, Round 10, Round 11, Round 12, Round 13, Round 14, Round 15, Round 16, Round 17, Round 18, Round 19, Round 20, Round 21, Round 22, Round 23, Round 24, Round 25, Round 26, Round 27, Round 28, Round 29, Round 30, Round 31, After the Tournament.
I climb the short two steps to the elevated game 1 in division 1 as this round was ending and find Ben Withers (Houston, TX) floating in a haze of SCRABBLE delirium. I grab him by the ankle and pull him down to chat. He has a sweetly goofy smile on his face and he said, "Adam Logan (New York, NY) opened with ZEnAIDA. I played OUTRIVAL. Adam played FLEETING. I played STATURE. And then, Adam played INWORKED#, which I challenged off." This last bingo is good in the World SCRABBLE dictionary and Adam is former World SCRABBLE Champion who may have had momentary dictionary confusion. This challenge gave Ben a bingo lane which he jumped on and he slapped down ENCYSTED from the E for 95 points. Then he got HOsPICE for 106, winning by 140 points or so. I spoke of this game with Kate Fukawa-Connelly who watched it remotely with John O'Laughlin and Cecilia Le. As soon as the computer displayed Adam's play, John said, "Oh no! Not our dictionary!" And he saw it coming up even before Adam did. Kate says that she and husband Tim and their guests played SCRABBLE all weekend and watched the live coverage avidly, from John's iphone when they were out of the house. Yeah for technology and keeping up with the goings on. We miss all four of you, btw!
I ran into Adam a few minutes later and he just kept shaking his head. He ends the day 11-3 +738, in 4th place behind the 12-2 trio of Dave Wiegand (Portland, OR), Nigel Richards (MYS), and Rafi Stern (Seattle, WA). There are many SCRABBLE games to come.
Darrell Day (Richardson, TX) lived through two triple-triples today. In round 9, Will Nediger (London ON) found ENDURERS and won their game, 497-431. In round 13, he played one against Laurie Cohen (Tempe, AZ), ESPECIAL, and won, 503-451.
Jan Dixon (Wilmington, DE) and Chris Lipe (Rome, NY) are deep into an endgame analysis. Any time the tiles are reassembled to a final version of the board, Jan picks them up and suggests another possible set of plays that could have happened. Chris is also doing his own analysis, both of them speaking to different sets of friends who have crowded around. I am sitting at the end of the table, trying to glean what happened, could of happened with both of them talking at once about different plays, picking up tiles that each other has just put down. It was almost like and Abbot and Costello skit. My notes say, "Chris was up and the bag was empty. All he had to do was go out in two, but Jan had so many high-scoring plays at her disposal he ended up losing by 4 points." One huge advantage Jan had was time. She had lots left on her clock. Chris ended the game with 11 seconds on his. She admitted to playing fast to give him less time to plan. It worked. 353-349, Jan's win, after a recount (which took place before anyone was near their game). Two fun bingos: her LANTERN for 67 and his TRigNESS for 74. More "who was on first, what was on second" over what those two blanks might be enused.
We end today with Thomas Reinke (Middleton, WI) leading the pack in div 2 at 13-1, but Sam Hollington (St. Catharines ON) is right behind him at 12-2. Dave Leonard (Buffalo, NY) leads div 3 at 12-2 with Errol Wilson (Brooklyn, NY) and Matt Canik (Austin, TX) at 11-3. Div 2 is led by Chris Canik (Austin, TX) who is 11.5-2.5. Max Karten (Barrington, RI), Joan Knobelsdorf (Palm Harbor, FL), and Christopher Walleck (Lakewood, OH) are half a game behind. And div 5 features two School SCRABBLE wiz kids in the top 3. Tristan Vanech (Venice, CA) is at 12-2 in first place, Ruben Radlauer (Los Angeles, CA) is in third place at 10-4. And sandwiched inbetween them both is David Meredith (Bowling Green, KY) at 11-3.
Can't wait for tomorrow!
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