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NSC 2002 Player Profile: Angelina Scroggins
Congratulations to our new National Champion, Joel Sherman!
Prior to September 2001, before Angelina Scroggins was introduced to club SCRABBLE® play, she'd been playing online with an addictive fervor. Her first few visits to Club #42 in Minneapolis, MN, were a struggle since she couldn't rely on the computer to add up the plays and keep the game score. She had to do those things for herself! Despite the added work, it's been a worthwhile undertaking and she's a happy club regular now.
Less than a month later, Angelina found herself at her first tournament: the Wisconsin Dells. Out of the event's five divisions, she was placed in division 4 (and seeded last, since she had no rating). Her overwhelming concerns were: could she remember tournament etiquette? Could she accurately count her plays, hit the clock, and record the score before replenishing her rack? Despite these newcomer jitters, as the tournament drew to a close, Angelina was vying for the division win. She claims she was "a nervous wreck." In the last game, she was paired against someone from her club who has always been victorious in their club sessions. Throughout the game, their scores were neck and neck, but Angelina eked out a win and first place at her first tournament!
Angelina meets with her fellow Club #42 buddies at The Bridge Center on Tuesday nights where Carol Dustin directs and Steve Pellinen "taps out the pairings after the first round utilizing his lap top." She credits nightly online games against Joe Gaspard for teaching her the finer points of the game. "Joe taught me strategies including sacrificing a few points or a turn (by exchanging) even if these actions are to my opponent's advantage," explains Angelina. "He encourages me to manage my time well and play as fast as possible at the beginning of the game so that I will have plenty of time planning my end game."
When I asked about her Nationals preparation, Angelina said, "I am not worried about my two-letter-words as I have mastered them all from playing online. I've memorized ninety percent of my threes and possibly twenty-five percent of the front and back hooks to make fours. I have a lot more to learn as far as the basic bingo stems, i.e., SATINE/SATIRE." She's also brushing up on her eight-letter-words. In a recent game she opened with TERATOID through her opponent's I and she's played REORIENT to the T. She says, "I spotted them in less than 30 seconds. So, yes, it pays to study."
The 40-something mom works with human resources employee data at Honeywell.
In her spare time she gardens and plays golf. Since she doesn't report
hollering "fore" nearly as often at the club as she does on the green,
I'll assume that her SCRABBLE® game is improving faster than her golf game!
Her other hobby is fishing and her goal, is to "catch a walleye big enough
for mounting." Note that she could play WALLEYE in a game of SCRABBLE®, since
the word is acceptable!
When asked about her best plays to date, she differentiates between
the live and the online plays. Qualifying as best live
play: RELENTS on a triple lane placed beneath AW, AMI, LIN, and E,
forming RELENTS, AMIN, LINT, and ES. Her opponent challenged AMIN
(it is good) and she got to make another play. Execellent online plays
were the triple-triple MAGAZINE for 230 points and WAISTED above
and parallel to MENTHOL, forming WE, AN, IT, SH, TO, and EL.
Now rated 1226, Angelina is one of 17 Club #42 players scheduled to play 31 NSC games in San Diego (and that isn't even factoring in the after-hours games she's sure to play!). Her excitement bubbles over when she says, "I am very excited and looking forward to being where the elite of the elites of the SCRABBLE® world will be present. I look forward to interacting with hundreds of people who share the same passion and my week will be consumed by SCRABBLE®, from morning to night. Is it heaven? Is it a curse? Whatever it is, I intend to make it the most memorable event of my SCRABBLE® 'career.'"
You just can't buy enthusiasm like that!
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