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NSC 2008 Commentary: Round 11

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Go to: 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, Award Ceremony.

Round 11

Joel Wapnick (Montreal QC) appears to be having better day today. He is at table 2 in division 1 and is playing Mark Kenas (Madison, WI). Long after the game is over and they are gone to lunch, I see that Mark won, 511-311.

A visiting business associate of the SCRABBLE-playing Thai contingent, Ravee Joradol (we think he is faking that he is Thai as his full name is only a total of 12 letters, which isn't half the length of the average Thai surname!), has spent much of this round with John Chew. In addition to their shared wonder of the game, I think they are also discussing the possilbity of John's software making an appearance at an upcoming major Thai event. How exciting!

The parents of Jason Katz-Brown (Cambridge, MA) are here in time to see their son take a turn at table 1 in division 1. I walk over to give them an update on the score of the game, but the ever-sophisticated duo is way ahead of me. They are using the ballroom's wireless to watch the game live. They are 15 feet away, watching it unfold live! This round, Jason defeated Ian Weinstein (Coral Springs, FL), 432-257.

Carl Johnson (Hillsboro, OR) vs. Joey Mallick (Cape Elizabeth, ME). Carl played REtSINA for 88 and TRUDGES for 77. Joey got down STOMPER for 81, BULKAGES for 82, and PAINTED for 83. Joey's win, 425-406. Way to keep it close, Carl!

Michael Baker (Portland, OR) lost a heartbreaker to Rob Robinsky (Minneapolis, MN) this round, 449-458. This is the second-highest score that Mike has earned this entire tournament and he lost the game. Ugh. Mike played GIROLlE for 74 and DESCANTS for 86 and Rob played RaRENESS from the first R for 74 and OUTFEELS for 95. In the endgame, with the bag full of 12 consonants and 3 vowels, Mike lucked out and drew TORULATE for 76, which brought him close. but not close enough. Both players are 3-8 now and looking for some better tile synergy soon!

Elspeth Abbate (Venice, FL) tells me that this round, in a game vs. Sam Hollington (St. Catharines ON), she played OBElIZES for 126.

Jeremy Hildebrand (Ottawa ON) vs. Pakorn Nemitrmansuk (Thailand), 436-410, Jeremy's win. I see Pakorn's COMITIES and LIQuATeD and Jeremy's THUNDERS and AERIALS. Pakorn is now 5-6 (wins-losses) and Jeremy is 6-5. Standing nearby, Lisa Odom (St Louis Park, MN) and Steve Pellinen (St Louis Park, MN) tell me that they are also 6-5. I guess it is all the rage!

Robert Gillis (Owens X Roads, AL) vs. David Weiss (Billings, MT). Toward the end of the game, down on time, and needing to open bingo lines, Bob played GIRN for 6 points and then VAIR for 21. On his next play, he found DEVELOPE for 67 through the V. By catching David with WORRU (16 points) on his rack, Robert won the game, 372-364. Bob opened the game with TERGItE and David found LUMINOUS from the L.

Stress of tournament can make people confused beyond belief. As proof, John Robertson, directing division 5, took a strange director call this morning. A player tried a bingo, designating the blank as a P. The opponent challenged the bingo and since it was bad, it came off the board. The director question was "if the blank is used in a subsquent word, must it remain a P?" The ruling is, "No, the blank can be any tile in a subsequent play.

Recounting his favorite game, John Robertson recounts playing former World SCRABBLE Champion Dave Boys (who is not with us this year). In their game, which John lost, he managed to play two Archie Bunker words: DINGBAT and MEATLOAF!

Joe Edley (Port Jefferson, NY) tells me about his favorite tournament game in a long, long time. He was playing Robin Pollock Daniel (Toronto ON). UNAGLILE for 68 was Robin's opening play. He replied with LIONISED for 61. Robin played AWA for 20, he played ZED for 55. She then played the non-bingo, lovely POLEAXE for a 64-point double-double. He played ANTRUM for 33, she responded with PEARWOOD for 74, which fell one letter short of the bottom triple line. Joe then replied with INCHED for 51; score 226-200, Robin's lead. Her next play was BUMEY fr 36 and holding AOBCGST, Joe played GAB for 24, keeping COAST. She played JUNK for 31, and then he had COASTQF. He played FACTS/PEARWOODS for 47 and was down by 22. She found INERTIA for 21. He held MOSQUEA and played MOSQUE for 42, now down 1 oint. Robin played THEY for 55, giving her a 369-313 lead. Holding AEFGNTT, he has to open a bingo line, and so he plays EF for 29. She uses that front hook and plays VIDE, hooking to create DEF for 23. Holding AGONNTR, Joe opts to play AGOG for 16 points. To NNTR he picks SEI. He has the blank, but she can't bingo. With 3 tiles in the bag, she playes RAX and is ahead, 402-358. Joe can now play one of two plays: STINTER or another bingo in another spot. Figuring the prior one was more dangerous, he played STINTER. She held ELORRV?, took 5 minutes, and found FLAVORER for 74 to win the game, 480-428. He lost, but the loved the game!

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