2013 CNSC

June 21–24, 2013

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Commentary: Round 16

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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, Award Ceremony, Final Round 1, Final Round 2, Final Round 3, After the Tournament.

Round 16

Players were ushered in to play this round and few were still outside and Mad was calling for them to get moving. She smacked Gabriel Gauthier-Shalom (Montreal QC) on the bottom and said, "kick some butt!" He stopped and said, "But I need a hug." And, ever the wonderful director, she gave him one. He went into the room smiling. Getting a cup of coffee, Dielle Saldanha (Richmond BC) shouted over, "Where is my hug?"

Sal Desiato came to visit us this afternoon. After some pleasantries he asked if there was a computer that he could use to watch the annotated game between Adam Logan (Ottawa ON) and Jackson Smylie (Toronto ON). John Chew took him to one. Then Chris Lipe sat down beside me (how does this guy have so much free time? I can never watch the annotated game!) and loaded the annotated game. He said, "Watch this, Sherrie." And then, through the EL, Adam slapped down MELANOSIS. I gasped. Nice! Jeez Louise! Then Sal came back into the foyer and said, "Did you see MELANOSIS? Sheesh!" This game, as it turns out for those who don't know, was a grudge match. At the last CNSC in 2011, Jackson played Adam in game 1 and BEAT Adam. So, there was NO WAY that Adam was going to lose this one. And he didn't. Do check out the annotated game section. Jackson told me he was impressed with many plays, but JUNK on the triple extended on another turn to JUNKETER, was top notch. This kid is cool under pressure and he sat and chatted with the annotators for a long time when the game was done. This win puts Adam two games ahead of the pack with two games to go, but I hear rumblings that he won't be gibsonized.

A barn burner is going down at table 3 between [error: no such id: johns] and Max Panitch (Toronto ON). I approach and John is all Zen with his legs crossed under the table. The board is upside down to him, but it is his turn. I check out the scoresheets. I see John's COMITIES for 77, VIEWERS for 79, and PROLAtE for 83. At that point, Max had played ACHIEVED for 71 and SURICATE for 62. The score at this point is 332-327, so very close (yes this is my dodge, I don't note who had which score). I walk around the board and spot a blank on Max's rack, few tiles left in the bag, so I take off. When the game was over, I wandered by and saw that he got down WETLANDs from the W for 65. It was a 436-363 win for Max. John thought he stood a chance until that last bingo went down. Wonderful game.

Jeremy Hildebrand (Ottawa ON) vs. Dean Saldanha (Richmond BC). I arrive just as the game was ending and Jeremy said, "I drew the bag on you, sorry about that." I told Jeremy about Dean's last win and that the other shoe had dropped. Dean agreed. Early on, Jeremy played SNARERS for 84 and LIANOID for 69 and was well ahead. Then Dean played FRIZETTE on the triple lane for 140 and caught right up. But that was short lived as Jeremy played ASTIBLES for 67 and ALIENERs through the L for a 122-point triple-triple. It was a 536-423 win for the bearded one. He said, "Hey Dean! Your play scored more than my triple-triple!"

I catch Dean Porporo (Nepean ON) and James Leong (Vancouver BC) doing paperwork at the end of their game. I see aGERATUM, played by James (It had Mad pausing to look at it. She said, "I have never seen that word before!"). The rest of the plays, ETCHINGS, AIRWORK, TATTIEST, and UNpAUSE, must have been Dean's since he won, 500-353.

On a Matthew Tunnicliffe (Ottawa ON) vs. Christopher Sykes (Cambridge ON) board, I see AsSURES, ROUIlLE (blank L), TOPLINE, and the fun LITHER.

A few of the players were gathered together outside and hearing the stories of "I lost again" and the like, Eric Tran (Calgary AB) said to Matthew Tunnicliffe (Ottawa ON), "Hey, what happened to young players being in the finals!" I guess they had a plan that has been foiled.

John Robertson (Cambridge ON) had his highest tournament game EVER this round, against the gracious Barbara Bultz (Dollard-des-Ormeaux QC). Before I go on about him, I'll let her sole bingo say it all: LOATHING. :) He got down RECANTER (which drew a challenge), DECODER, PAlIESt (blank L), and his outbingo of SENORES. A 590 score for him. Great job, John!

Kristen Chew brings her two kids and tournament working Alice Ching-Chew's two kids to the event and they hang out with some of the players and eat cookies. I wish they would stay longer, but they are off for more fun adventures.

Chris Lipe writes:

Craig Rowland (Mississauga ON) stops me before the start of Round Sixteen to let me know that, officially, he has merely tied his lowest tournament score ever. "In a Montreal tournament many years ago, I lost to Zev Kaufman (Toronto ON) with a 210. Just to make sure that Allen Pengelly (Waterloo ON) knows he does not hold the record, he has merely tied it." Allen had won 422-210. Yikes.

Joel Wapnick (Montreal QC) is going second against Dielle Saldanha (Richmond BC) and is holding ABERUY? after Dielle opened with ZAX. The only seven plays only in Collins. (1)

Here's one. Juraj Pivovarov (Calgary AB) opens with MICRO. Bernard Gotlieb (Montréal QC) bingoes with RANDIES / MICRON. Juraj's rack is laid out ?IDWIFE. After a lot of deliberation, would you play MIDWIFES? It's more points than WILDFIRE. MIDWIFES goes down, and Bernie holds. Would you challenge MIDWIFES? It remains unchallenged, and it is acceptable.

Just so everyone knows, Jason Ubeika (Mississauga ON) could have opened the game against Chris Williams (Vancouver BC) with EWE in Norwegian Scrabble also, and it would have been acceptable, and it would have been worth 20 points instead of 12.

More rough times for Andy Saunders (Guelph ON). He opens his game with FINK, I on the star, and Heather McCall (Toronto ON) immediately hits mONSTER / FINKS for a 2x2. Andy dumps some vowels, playing AGIO / MONSTERA, and Heather's next rack is ENEMIES / AGIOS on the triple line.

Roger Cullman (Toronto ON) is having a similar experience with Joshua Castellano (Vienna, VA) -- he opened with QUID and Josh immediately hits him wire WIReMAN / EQUID for a 108 point 2x2. I assume that it was Josh's bingo only because Roger shot me a frowny face as I walk by.

Dean Saldanha (Richmond BC) is on fire today. He's got two triple-triples already and just now against Jeremy Hildebrand (Ottawa ON) he lay down (F)RIZETTE on the triple line slotting the Z for 140. Jeremy holds and then does not challenge.

Tony Leah (Ajax ON) and Steve Ozorio (Mississauga ON) are done and I look quizzically at ?OUTINE / ?ID on their board thinking to myself, umm, what is this? PID* is no good! Until I look at Tony's scoresheet, it didn't even occur to me that there are other -OUTINE words.

I'm walking past Kristiina Overton (Maxville ON) and Shan Abbasi (Mississauga ON) and Shan has Kristiina on hold following a five-tile play, and so Kristiina has taken her courtesy tiles and put them on a separate rack. They are all extra-long racks, though, so the two of them side by side extend across half the table. Let me tell you, I love this rule. I wish they could make extra-extra long racks that are eighteen inches apiece. I wish we could use two racks at a time in almost every situation. I wish there could be courtesy draws that require three or four racks. I want.... I want the Rules Committee to take note, and put on the docket for discussion, let's find some situation where a third rack is required. I know I support it, as a matter of turning Scrabble into absurd performance art, and I'm sure certain rack manufacturers will support it as well. It's a win-win!


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