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Back to 1998 MSSC Commentary

1998 MSSC Commentary: Round 4

The Civic Center employees have wheeled barrels of sodas and water into the playing room--much appreciated by everyone.

I've noticed an interesting way of testing out plays at this tournament. The team whose turn it is, puts the tiles onto the board with the precarious thin side resting in the squares so that their opponents can only see the backs of the tiles. This way, the players can try out different plays on different parts of the board without their opponents knowing their tiles. Very clever!

On one board I see ZITS, STRICT to a triple, SAINT to a triple, PROBES, PAINTED, and an unchallenged IX, oops! All these words are acceptable, but IX. I think the students meant to play XI, which is acceptable.

Photographing boards has been difficult as the students pick them up almost instantly after they are done. I'm used to SCRABBLE® experts pouring over their plays for at least a few minutes after a completed game!

On table 2, Silverman/Moss (Runkle blue) just made a lovely play of BEADINg for 77 points. They hooked this word onto the bottom of AWE, making AWED.

At table 25, William/Ng (Brookings blue) just played QUILT on a triple for 42 points.

At table 11, Cioffi/Otolan (Immaculate Conception-Revere red) defeats Medina/Nelson (Brookings red), 217-211. Cioffi/Otolan played ORANGe, DOG (creating JIBED from an existing JIBE), and SLEEPs. Medina/Nelson played QUOTES and JIBE.

One student handed me a slip of paper when I was busy taking a photo. I thanked her, but didn't open it until I reached my computer desk. After round 4, she'd taken time to write a poem! I share it with you:

SCRABBLE® by Ellen Handly (St. Mary Star of the Sea)

What goes on inside my head
when I'm far away from home
different room and different bed
Do I feel all alone?
"No!" is now my strongest quip!
'cause I'm here at the SCRABBLE® Championship!
Double words
and double letters
Now I will get
even better
learning words like
"cwm" and "crowned"
we get better every round
So far we have won
uh--twice!
And we feel really nice
The prizes--all three
are big I can tell
Like the first place
a trip to FL!
But no one walks
away empty-handed
Cause everybody that is branded
(with a name tag--not a seal)
gets a prize that *I* feel
is really cool and worth it too!
So no one ends up being blue!


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