Palaces R Us
Richard Fetzer and Debbie Gutermuth
doing her annual Alfred Hitchcock cameo in her own photos.
Charles Faella, Doug Faust and Chris
Greenfield join the palace building craze as Alhambra
again tops 100 entrants.
Alhambra used only two preliminary heats to again break
triple digits with 116 players chasing 25 available advancement
First heat highlights:
· Karen Roberts topped David Meynard by a single point;
· Ed Roberts posted the highest score of 122. This table
also had the lowest score (49).
· Carolyn Strock's 117 denied 2007 champ Vassili Kyrkos.
· Ashley Collinson's 104 generated the largest margin
of victory (27) over runner-up Robert Drozd.
· Lynda Shea won her table with the smallest wall length
of 4. The average wall length of winners in the first heat was
12. This is the lowest wall length for any winner of the past
two years. In the process, she beat defending champion Luke Koleszar,
who did not return for the second heat - thus ending his title
· Ted Mullalley's 84 generated the smallest spread (25)
between first and last.
The other winners in the heat were Craig Moffitt (90), Nick
Henning (96), Peter Eldridge (99). Laura DeWalt (120), Jay Fox
(105), Jeff Mullet (103) and Franklin Haskey (103).
Second heat highlights:
· Eric Freeman topped 2009 champion Kevin Wojtasczyk,
denying his bid for a second title.
· Rob Kilroy had the highest score (107 and the greatest
spread (28) over runner-up Lee Mewshaw. Despite this, Eric Cheathams
was able to buy three buildings with exact change and was able
to pick up three cards to finish that turn.
· Kevin Lewis won the closest game, besting Angela Collinson
by one and Alex Henning by two.
· Tammy Lusk and Marybeth Mitchell both won their respective
games with 100 points and tied for the game with the largest
first-to-last spread (38).
· Hillary Haagen won with the smallest first-to-last spread
of 20 points
· Anthony Daw won with the smallest wall (8).
· Rolinda Collinson and Brian Mongold both won their tables
with the largest wall lengths (18).
The other winners were Stu Hendrickson (105), Ashley Kilroy
(83), Thomas Idzikowski (98), John Luckini (102), Heather Spangenberg
(99), Michael Shea (93), and Vassili Kyrkos (89). Since this
was Vassili's second heat played and the lowest score of those
on the bubble, he was the last alternate.
With 29 winners from the two heats, four would not advance if
they all opted to continue. But as so often happens, the lure
of other attractions kept four winners away so all qualifiers
who wanted to advance were able to do so.
The first semi-final seated Rolinda Collinson, Stu Henrdickson,
Ed Roberts, Jay Fox, and Marybeth Mitchell. Rolinda took an early
lead by building a wall length of 8. By the second scoring round,
it was a very even game with a 7-point spread between the highest
and lowest scores. A lot changed by the last scoring round, as
this table ended with the largest spread of 29 points between
the winner and runner-up. Stu had only picked up two additional
buildings to finish last with 63 points. Marybeth had only gained
three buildings for a score of 68. Rolinda and Ed each gained
four buildings and almost doubled their wall lengths, but Jay
had gained five buildings while also doubling his wall length.
Jay scored 116 points with Ed at 87 and Rolinda at 78.
The second table drew Jeff Mullet, Lynda Shea, John Luckini,
Eric Freeman, and Rob Kilroy. The first scoring round came early
with only seven buildings purchased. This put Lynda in the lead,
followed closely by Jeff, with John and Rob in the middle, and
Eric trailing without points as yet. By the second scoring round,
the order had almost completly flipped. Most of the green buildings
had appeared so there was a lot of fighting over the lead in
green. Eric had taken the lead by obtaining four green buildings
and a wall length of 12. He was followed by John who was battling
Eric but had only obtained three green buildings and a wall length
of 10. Rob was in the middle with a score of 28; followed by
Lynda with a score of 22, and Jeff now in last with 17 points.
By the last scoring round, a lot of people were ready to make
their move. Unfortunately, Rob was not able to become the sole
lead in any color, but shared the lead with Jeff in red and white
so he trailed the pack with 60 points. Lynda was in a similar
situation, sharing the lead with Jeff in the brown buildings,
for 65 points. John had made up a lot of ground, but being tied
in three colors did not help. He ended with 80 points. It was
up to John and Eric to battle it out. They both ended up sharing
the lead with the brown buildings with John being the lead in
blue and Eric the lead in purple. John had built a wall length
of 18 while Eric had a length of 16. The fact that purple is
the highest paid color and blue is the lowest made the difference
between them with Eric pulling out the win.
The next table had Laura DeWalt, Kevin Lewis, Vassili Kyrkos,
Hillary Haagen, and Anthony Daw. After the first scoring round,
Anthony's slow start left him with 6 points and trailing the
others at 9 and 10 points. By the end of the second scoring round,
Anthony had dropped further behind the pack with only 15 points.
Hillary dropped back to fourth place with 22 points. Kevin was
in the middle with 25. Laura & Vassili were tied at 34. The
order did not change in the last scoring round as Anthony ended
with 48 points, followed by Hillary with 73, and Kevin at 82.
It all came down to Laura & Vassili. They had both obtained
12 buildings and wall lengths of 11 or 13, but Vassili's combination
provided him more points giving him the win with 111 points to
Laura's 104. Vassili, the last one into the semi-finals, had
now returned to the Final.
The fourth table was contested by Karen Roberts, Tom Idzikowski,
Heather Spangenberg, Mike Shea, and Brian Mongold. After the
first scoring round, the field was spread with Heather taking
the lead with 13 points, followed by Brian 9, Karen 8, and Tom
2. Mike was shutout. By the end of the second scoring round,
Mike had rejoined the pack. Heather was still in the lead and
Tom was in the rear. Tom was unable to make up any ground and
ended with 55 points. The rest were grouped together except that
Mike had now taken the lead in three of the six colors. His 97
topped Heather 87, Brian 86, and Karen with 85.
The last table had Peter Eldridge, Ashley Kilroy, Craig Moffitt,
Tammy Lusk, and Ashley Collinson. The first scoring round grouped
Peter, Craig, and Tammy within one point of each other with both
Ashley's trailing the pack. Unfortunately, for them, this trend
did not improve. After the second scoring round, Peter pulled
ahead of Craig and Tammy by 15 points. Peter lost half his lead
in the last scoring round but held on to best Tammy by 8 points
with Craig in third.
The five victiors then contested the Final round. By the first
scoring, ten buildings had already been purchased. Eric had only
one building and one wall length for 3 points. Mike also had
one building, but 2 wall length for 4 points. Next came Jay,
who had two buildings and a wall length of 3 for 6 points. Peter
had three buildings and wall length of 4 for 7 points. Vassili
also had three buildings, but had the best wall length of 6 giving
him the early lead with 15 points. By the second scoring round,
there were a lot of ties in the color race. Eric and Jay were
tied for the blue buildings. Peter, Eric, and Vassili had a three-way
tie for red. Mike, Eric, and Vassili also contested a three-way
tie for green. Even though quite a few more buildings were added
to their Alhambras, the wall lengths had not significantly changed
except for Eric with a 7 and Mike with a 5. Otherwise, the other
three had stood pat in the wall race. After the second round
scores, Vassili was still in the lead, followed by Mike, Eric,
Jay and Peter. Even though Peter had gained 11 new buildings,
he did not improve his position by the end and trailed with 53
points. Eric had secured the lead in purple (the highest point
buildings), but in doing so, had lost his position in the others
which left him with 65 points. Jay had secured the lead in blue
and brown and had a nice long wall length of 13 for 78 points,
but did not make up the 20 points he fell behind the leader after
the second scoring. It all came down to Mike and Vassili. Both
added only five buildings to their Alhambra, but Mike had 14
points to make up. The wall lengths were the driving factor.
Mike had added only three wall lengths to his Alhambra between
the second and last scoring round, giving him a length of 8.
Vassili was able to keep his lead in buildings yet almost doubled
his wall length from 8 to 15. This gave Vassili seven more points
between rounds for an 8-point victory and his second Alhambra
title which puts him at the head of the class in Alhambra's
eight year WBC run.
Rolinda Collinson, Pam Gutermuth and
Rick Bynaker tote that marble for their designer walls.
Vassili Kyrkos, Michael Shea, Jay
Fox, Peter Eldridge and Eric Freeman emerge from a field of 116
to make the final five.