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NASC 2015 Commentary: Round 31

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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, 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.

Round 31

Division 4’s winner has been decided! Evan McCarthy (Windham, NH) defeated Constance J Creech (Metamora, MI), 420-366. The 2010 School SCRABBLE Champion has won a division at the adult NASC! Connie had played LArGEST and Evans got down AERIEST, but was behind. I see QINTARS, AVENGED, PILATES*, and OREO* on the board (these last two were Connie’s plays!) He bingoed out with OUTSpENT through the N to win the game, 420-366. Evan, 18 years old, will enter Wentworth Institute in the fall to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering. Good for Evan!

I follow Chan Fonseka (Dublin, CA) and Jack Peters (Nantucket, MA) to the challenge machine: INSAINS* is ruled unacceptable and comes off the board. I see LoOKERS on their board.

John Karris (San Jose, CA) vs Kevin Fraley (San Jose, CA). I think QuOITING is Kevin’s first play, pretty (replying to John’s opener). Later Kevin played LAnTERN John got down RENTIER, ISOLATED, and HUNKERS. This was John’s win, 439-371, and it makes him now 2-1 in their best of 5. Kevin’s second bingo was an outbingo. This is the second time someone has outbingoed and lost the game. I am sensing a theme here.

On the Gunther Jacobi (Portland, OR) vs. Tod Taylor (Seattle, WA) board, I see FAItOURS.

On the Greg Feldkamp (Cleveland Heights, OH) vs. Daniel Novinson (San Francisco, CA) board, I see HORNY, DATINGS, DETRAINS, ATAPIES, LEADIEST, BEHAVes, CURLIER, and SCURRIER.

Will Anderson (Croton, NY) wins the third game in his series with Panupol Sujjayakorn (Thailand), 523-387. He is now 2-1 over the Thai. The game was partially picked up and Panupol was trying to put the tiles back and told him not to bother. Will said, let me sum it up for you. “I opened with QUOTH and Panupol replied with REMOVED underneath for a bunch of points. We traded more bingos and I got the upper hand by a bit when I played the game’s last two bingos: SMIDGEN and DOLLIES.

After losing 3-0 to Dave Wiegand (Portland, OR) yesterday afternoon, Evans Clinchy (Boston, MA) does the very same thing to Joanne Craig (Australia), defeating her this round, 472-435. He admitted he came into today with a tank full of extra fuel! I see her TOLIDInE and his CORONIS#, REDATED, WATERInG to the G, and NOTELET (with a bunch of overlapping plays). In their endgame chat I heard him say. There was a JQ? left in the bag and wouldn’t you know, he got the blank. The winning move, they both agree was WATERING. He played a picked one tile in the bag, the Q, but he had such had such a lead at that point, it didn’t matter.

Speaking of parallel plays, Jason Broersma (Caledon ON) opened his game against Carmel Dodd (Australia) with AMBARI for 26 (and his scoresheet says, +5, so I assume she challenged). She replied with NEATEST for 78, creating AN/ME/BA/AT/RE/IS. Jim Pate found that so charming he had to bring me over to see.

More Finals Games:

At the very start of their 4th game, Bill Ewing (Missoula, MT) played BANTAmS which drew a challenge. Turns out that it wasn’t the bingo that Charles didn’t like, but the hook which was HOWS, but it is good. Charles Dupont (Seattle, WA) got to think about his rack for one more turn! Later on, I saw some other fun words on their board: ROsINOL, DILATE, and DEMISES. They were all Charles’ plays. So, I wanted some info, but the game got super tense. And I thought they were over, so I tried to approach and heard the “we are going to do a recount” thing and felt the hand go up, so I walked away and had lunch. When I got back, I discovered that the game had been decided. Initially, Bill was to have lost by 3 points. He did gain points in the recount, but only 2. Oh well. So, it was a 3-1 win for Charles and Bill ends up in second place, not too shabby.

The 4th and deciding game for 3rd and 4th place has been played in division 1. Will Anderson (Croton, NY) defeated Panupol Sujjayakorn (Thailand), 423-376, and has won 3 of 4 games, earning him 3rd. I see Will’s GRATINEE and DESTINED. Will said, “don’t miss the game’s best play, Panupol’s OVERFrEE. Congrats to them both!

A tense Orry Swift (Houston, TX) vs. Thomas Reinke (Middleton, WI) is going on at the next table. I see THROBBED, EpIMYSIA, ERUDITE, and OUTRIDER. There is plenty of time left on both racks, but Orry took a lot of time figuring out his last play (he was configuring his “play out in two” strategy). He put down a word, the picked it up and finally decided on something for not too much, holding SEA, which he turned upside down on his rack, ready to drop down on his next turn. I wanted to see Thomas’ rack and see what was making things so tense, but felt attention would only make it worse.

Austin Shin (United Kingdom) and John O'Laughlin (San Francisco, CA) continue their bingo-laden games. I watch Austin play REvOTING to the G in front of me for 82. Other words on the board: TENTERs and SWORDSMAN from the S. Okay, with a rack of AEIILTY, Austin tried a bingo. John challenged and they managed to walk to the machine, type it in, clear the screen, and get it picked up off the board before I could even see what it was and I was standing right behind them! Fast fingers and a queue at the challenge machine obscuring my vision are my main excuses (that or I’m just very very very slow!).

April McCarley (Austin, TX) wants me to know that managed to win 22 games at this championship (by virtue of being in the top 8 she may have had access to more games?) and she is delighted. She had a great time at these nationals and cannot wait for next year! This reminds me of a stolen moment with Kate Fukawa-Connelly (Lawrenceville, NJ) yesterday, late in the afternoon. She was leaning against the command center, looking out over her division, division CSW, and the top two roped off boards. She looked at me and said, “I’m so sad, it is almost over. I don’t want it to end.” And, I loved her for this, because I feel the very same way every year. I don’t want us all to go back to our normal lives. I want us to be together for longer!

The fourth game for Kevin Fraley (San Jose, CA) vs. John Karris (San Jose, CA) had the MOST REMARKABLE thing happen, AGAIN! The peon who bingoed out, LOST! I see Kevin’s WARMtHS and NAVALISE*. John played ROLAMITE and REGAINERS. John bingoed out with TROUbLE and Kevin won, 468-397. They are now 2-2 and onto game 5!

Tod Taylor (Seattle, WA) almost stopped keeping track of score in his fourth game with Gunther Jacobi (Portland, OR). I see EvERSION, SMOLTiNG, ANGERED, FLINTERS. So, going 3-1, Gunther wins 3rd place, Tod wins 4th, and they both get to go out for a nice lunch!

Game 5 of the 3rd and 4th place in division 5 was just determined. Chan Fonseka (Dublin, CA) defeated Jack Peters (Nantucket, MA), 454-410. It was a battle, too! Jack played BERATER* and they both thought it was good. Chan managed to triple-triple through the R with DOWAGERs for 167 points! Then, when he play INMATeS, it pretty much won him the game.

Back to John Karris (San Jose, CA) and Kevin Fraley (San Jose, CA). This time the outbingo actually WON the game! Under his breath I heard Kevin say, “I just had to go over on my clock and lose 30 points to find it!” He say LIAISON in his rack, but he needed more points. He found it: SIALOId! John played HORNDOGS and DOTTIEr while Kevin got down ENDEAVOR and SPACKLEr. In their last game, John thought he’d learned OTITIDE*, so he played it. But, Kevin knew it had to have the S, so challenged it off!

So, the room cleared out more than an hour ago. The bulk of the players headed off to the Silver Legacy ballroom A to check out the live coverage of the last couple of games. Both the CSW and div 1 titles took 5 rounds to determine. The annotated CSW game just finished up with Peter Armstrong (Oakland, CA) winning the first place title. Dave Wiegand (Portland, OR) came so close! I went up the to just finished board and asked Peter if he could attribute his win in round 5 to his replacement annotator (John Chew stepped in and did a whole round of annotating!). Peter smirked, but said he won by managing to not all apart and keep it all together. And, as an afterthought, he said, “getting away with this helped a lot.” I looked at where he was pointing and saw INDITOR*. Getting a phony past Dave? Wow! Congratulations to them both!

In TWL land, we are waiting for the 5th and final game between Jesse Day (Berkeley, CA) and Matthew Tunnicliffe (Ottawa ON) to finish. We discovered with all the players gone from the room, the commentators were easy to hear at the playing tables, so Robin and Jesse have spent this last game whispering throughout. We are going to run out of this room across the street through the festival to the awards ceremony across the street!

Our new NASC Champ: Matthew Tunnicliffe (Ottawa ON)! He defeated Jesse Day (Berkeley, CA) in an exciting 5th game. Jesse, as cool as could be, congratulated him and then grabbed his bag of nuts and started chomping down. We are running over the viewing room for the prize ceremony now! The Ottawa SCRABBLE club must be rejoicing! Time to order another celebratory cake!

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