Scrabble Club / January 18, 2024

I won two out of three last night:

475-208 against Vivina. I played three bingos: AEROFOIL (62), VERITAS (98) and ZESTIeST (101); none from Vivina.

380-373 against Mad. We each played a bingo: my CERATINS (90) and Mad’s tIMElINE (77). Mad was ahead for most of the game, however when I drew the Q I had to do some serious endgame strategizing. With a rack of AAABENQ I saw the possibility of QI, or setting up a play for NIQAB or NIQAAB but only if I drew an I. There were two tiles left in the bag after Mad had her turn. Of the nine unseen tiles, three were IIU so I felt I needed to empty the bag to give me the best chance of picking one of them. I un-tripled my A’s to score 8 by playing AA under the -AT- in CERATINS, and picked the final two letters, W and I. I always draw them one at a time, even when I know I am emptying the bag, and bemoaned the W, yet it saved me in the end. The last tile in the bag was the I. Mad dropped her E under the T in the top right quadrant to make TE for 2. After TE our scores were tied at 327. The only place on the board for QI would have been to play it under that T to make QI / TI. My play of AA gave me the opening to play TAN / NIQAB. Mad did not see NIQAB, as it is not one of the more frequent U-less Q plays, although Mad certainly knew the word. The W gave me an outplay to take me to 374-373, prior to gaining six extra points off her rack. When we did the postmortem we saw that Mad could have won the game by playing VIRUS in the spot where I played NIQAB, instead of playing TE. I still would have been able to play QI / TI or the more lucrative NIQAB under the -US in VIRUS (which would have brought me ahead 363-340) but her outplay would have scored 20, plus the ten on my rack for the unplayed EW to take her to 370, giving her the win by seven points.

366-385 against Peter H. He opened with TRAINER (66) then played STOUrIE (70). I was never ahead in this game, always fighting back and was at one time behind by over a hundred points. I managed to bingo out with MALtOSE (85), hooking the S onto CARRY. My favourite play however was YPERITE (28).

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