Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Warren Day 1

Got my new rating in , 1424, a gain of 52 points. Performance rating for the tourney was 1526, I am pretty happy with that. I'm now the number 5 top player in KY, not counting Matt Ridout that is.

I rode up on friday to Warren, MI with Bryan Bowman and Kelly McKenzie.
Got up sat morning at about 7:30, got ready and we headed to warren from the hotel. Took about 30 minutes, grabbed some Tim Hortons and I was ready to go.

This tournament was different from any other tourney ive played in, in more then one way. The tourney wasnt your typical round robin or KOTH(king of the hill), it was a match based KOTH. You played the same opponent 3 times in a row. If you won 2 out of the 3 you moved on (if you lost you were sent to the losers bracket where you still played matches, but winning matches was only good for your record, not for KOTH). Also it was my first tourney where a former national champ was present, Joel Sherman. He is a pretty quiet fellow, keeping to himself a lot of the time (when hes not hacking up snot or phlegm).

Match 1 - Steve Grob (1648 - now 1716) 1-2 Loss
I was really happy to have Steve as my first opponent. I stayed with him one night at the Fenton Tourney and would be staying with him saturday night as well. He is a great guy, very friendly and an awesome scrabble player. I was extremely happy he won the tourney.

Game 1 - Score: 527-389 (Win)
I started off the tourney great, answering his AUTOINg(71) with the double-double RATIF(I)ED(98). Then drew into the natural BULKING(77) which came in second for low prob 7 bingo. Followed up with WH(A)M (36) and the disconnected 9 gR(E)EDIES(T) (72) for a total of 283 in 4 turns. That put me up almost 100 and it was smooth sailing from there on out, sealing the deal with TERCELS (70). Steve complemented me on the disconnected 9, Ive only played one other one in my scrabble career and it was also against him. Good to start off the tournament with a bagging, I felt good going into game 2.

Game 2 - Score 460-353 (Loss)
He opened with WAXILY(44), I bingoed early with SEITANS(70), then he bingoed back with DATARIe(S). I drew into the q and some clunky racks, scoring 20ish each time but keeping the q and junk. He kept hitting hard 31, 27, 30, 30, and by the time I finally exchanged (should have earlier most likely) I was down 70. Had to exchange after a UUI draw a couple of turns later, and he never let up. aUNTIES for 78 left me down 50, and some more ugly racks (ACGIOUY, AAGHOUL, etc) kept me from catching up.

Game 3 - Score 338-418 (Loss)
This game can be chalked up to my error. Early on in the game on a closed board I held CEILRSU and instead of fishing with CUT, I decided to try CURLIES*(81). When I first saw it on the rack I thought it was no good, then managed to convince myself it was (short and curlies??). He held and eventually challenged off the phony. He closed the board and I exchanged the U, and of course drew another one. Serves me right for the phony. I was never really in the game after that. He double-doubled with WILDEsT(98), folled by OUZO(31) and OX(36). I got down (D)HOBI (45), which earned a "nice play" from Steve. Later in the game holding EEFLRS? I found one of the two playable bingos FLENSER(78). He held for a while, decided the only way to lose was to challenge so he let it go. If I don't play curlies who knows how the rest of game plays out, but If I don't lose this game Steve doesn't go on to win the 1000 bucks prize, so I don't feel too bad.

Match 2 - Pete Zeigler (1651 - now 1633) 2-1 Win
I have to admit I was intimidated going into this Match, Pete has a much bigger word knowledge then I do.

Game 1 - Score: 502-291 (Loss)
I believe this is my biggest tourney loss so far. My racks were decent, my timing was just off, and his was great. He opened with BEDOUIN(76) , a few turns later I got down nET(T)IEST (68), and he responded with ROADIES(75). I made a stupid challenge of his R(O)TENONE(61) a few turns later, thinking I would have seen the word already studying by probability. I was aware that he knew he had greater word knowledge then me, so I had assumed he would try some phonies, I guess not.

Game 2 - Score: 427-411 (Win)
This was a back and forth game where I never felt secure in having a lead.
He bingoed early on with V(A)RIOLES(62) which I followed up with READOUT/O(VARIOLES)(74). He gets down ZONAE (39), I bingo/bango with GARROTE(S)(72) and LIAISON (73) to go up 80. Two turns later he gets down POUTINE(77) and the game is very close there on out. 379-377 and my turn with AACEHO? with the bag empty I find the best endgame sequence according to quackle (although he was holding DDHSY?, which helped) and pull out the win. His last play, DaSHY/MINDINGS* (34) I had to let go even though I was 95% sure it was phony.

Game 3 - Score: 335-404 (Win)
Nothing too exciting here, he bingo's with (U)RENIMIA, i bingo with CREAT(I)NE and FANT(A)siE (missing ANTEFIXA for 25 more). He was getting some bad racks I think because a couple times he sighed loudly. The turning point might have been when he played AGLEY/(OAT)Y* and I challenged it off. I drew most of the power tiles as well, but according to quackle played a pretty solid game.

Match 3 - Rob Long (1548 - now 1470) 2-1 Win

Game 1 - Score: 451-352 (Loss)
Never had a shot in this one. He opens with FRESHeD(86), and two turns later REeNAC(T)S (86), to put me down 150. My draw into ANTES is bv and I knew right then that game wasnt meant to be. I have a nice run later in the game of LEISTER (76), FLEX(54), HITTER(50) to bring me within 30, but he gets the j and z out of the bag picks up some spread points.

Game 2 - Score: 435-415 (Win)
I bingoed early on with SAFROLS (78) he hit back with the double-double GRANTE(R)s (82), I hit right back with OVER(L)AID (84). He did one of those annoying sigh/grunt things as I was putting this down. A couple of turns later I get STEELING(70) and coast til the end game. I block the better of his two out bingo spots, and he pulls close with INGeS(T)ED(75). After this game Rob said to me "I have a request for next game, could you not chew gum? Its really annoying." Linda Hoggat was next to me also chewing gum and kinda laughed. Later we joked about it, I have to assume its because he had just lost a close one.
Game 3 - Score: 444-310 (Win)
The tiles were falling in my favor this game. SERINES(91) early on, then I foolishly challenged S(WOB), (thought it was swab/swop, must have missed swob), then he drew into some ugly tiles while I bingoed again with SINGLET(88). He wrongly challenged my play of REDIAE/(LEV)A and even though he drew both blanks it was too late to do anything with them. (He double blanked me all 3 games btw)

After the last game a group of us (Linda Hoggat, Jeff Clark, Steve Grob, Tina Totten King, Roger Cullman, and another lady I dont know) went to Red Lobster to eat. Great food, I split the trout with Roger (big meals). Afterwards we wen't back to the hotel and played a poker tournament. 20 dollar buy in, started with two tables and I believe 15 people. I played smart, caught a couple breaks and ended up getting to the final two. Me and steve knapp decided to split it rather then play heads up all night (Tina, Steve and Roger were waiting for me, we had an hour to drive) and walked away with 120 bucks. Not a bad first day, the sheet estimdated my rating gain at 84, I was tied for the class prize and I won some money.

9 games - 19 bingos
Day 2 to come...

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