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Ingenious (ING) WBC 2016 Report
Updated Oct. 25, 2016 Icon Key
132 Players Rebecca Roppolo, CO 2016 Status 2017 Status Event History
2016 Champion

Return of the (In)Geniuses

Ingenious logged another solid year in its Seven Springs debut! , Attendance remained stable despite the move. I’d like to start by thanking everyone who brought copies of the game to the heats. Your copy of the game definitely helped us seat more players faster. As has been evident over the years, the tournament needs every copy it can get, and this year was no exception. So again, thank you to those who brought their games.

We retained three heats and a demo. Only four players attended the demo, three to learn the game and one for a refresher. It was nonetheless time well spent and sends a welcoming message to one and all that the event is inclusive. The heats ran relatively smoothly, with the lone exception being a delay in Heat 2 due to a shortage of games. Enforced this year was the rule that a player who ingeniouses (scores 18) in all colors wins immediately. Four players in the heats and one in the demo quickly took advantage of this rule, and four more were just one color short. The first heat, the smallest of the three, featured 55 players at 14 tables. Heat 2 drew 86 players, organized into 22 games. Despite the aforementioned delay at the second heat, copies of the game did appear eventually, so thankfully nobody had to be turned away, and even with the delay, all games were finished within five minutes of the heat's scheduled end. The second heat benefited from a new afternoon time slot, which seems like a keeper. The third heat placed 79 players at 20 tables. Heat 3 also featured one of the highlights of the tournament: a complete tie. Megan Byrd and Katie Breza finished with equally low scores in all six colors; they both had 11 green, Megan had 13 red while Katie had 13 orange, and both Megan and Katie ingenioused each of their remaining four colors. In this unique situation, both players received credit for a win. This is the first tie that I have ever seen in many Ingenious games, and I suspect that it will be a while before I see another, so no further ruling seems necessary.

The semifinal round invited the top 16 players from the preliminaries. The heats produced ten double winners, similarly to last year. Yoel Weiss placed second in his third heat, giving him the top spot on the qualifying list, while all of the remaining double winners required margin of victory tiebreaks for seeding. The next 13 players each had a win and a second, but Meghan Friedmann and Jeff Cornett had an additional second from their third heat, securing their spots. The remaining 11 players required margin of victory and margin of defeat tiebreaks in order to determine the four qualifiers and seven alternates. Four qualifiers were unable to attend the semifinal round and were replaced by the top four alternates to crew four 4-player tables. Please note for next year that a win and a second may not be enough!

Rebecca Roppolo rolled through her semifinal, finishing a single yellow shy of a perfect game. Bruce Rae also toyed with an Ingenious of all colors, finishing four yellow short. Jeff Cornett’s score of 11 narrowly bested top-seeded Yoel Weiss’s ten and 2014 champion Meghan Friedmann’s nine. Yoel’s runner-up finish by one point earned fifth place overall. In the last semifinal, young gun Holiday Saccenti sealed victory with an impressive score of 14, besting Craig Thomas's and Carol Haney’s 12. Craig’s runner-up score of 13 beat Carol’s 12, giving Craig the sand laurels.

The final began moments later. Green was the first color to take off, buoyed by Rebecca, Bruce, and Jeff.  Holiday preferred to build the reds and oranges and managed to take the lead with some progress in more colors. Jeff stole the lead with points in blue and purple, but Holiday was first to Ingenious a color, netting 18 orange, although she missed a chance to cash in on the green boom before Rebecca started to close it off. Rebecca strategically ingenioused green and took the lead with a play for yellow and blue, opening up both colors. Holiday soon took advantage of this opportunity and ingenioused yellow. Jeff ingenioused yellow as well and inched even closer to the lead with points in red and blue. But Jeff only had two colors below the “8” mark compared to his opponents’ three. The board then opened up, allowing a big blue play for Rebecca and ingeniouses for Jeff and Bruce. Holiday maintained the lead in reds with nine but trailed with only four blues. The reds finally opened up at this point and Bruce played a double red tile for nine red, giving him his first lead of the game with a score of eight. A very nervous Rebecca thought for a bit about her next move. Her arms shook as she placed each tile, but that did not stop her from making the most exciting move of the game and perhaps the tournament. She ingenioused blue and picked up two orange, but she was far from finished; she proceeded to Ingenious the orange and take six red with it and then turned around and ingenioused red!!! Her final play of the turn was for seven yellow, and then she revealed her two remaining tiles, showing no purple. At the conclusion of her fantastic play, she had ten purple, 13 yellow, and four ingenioused colors, giving her a commanding lead. In addition, she had closed off a significant portion of the board. The others did what they could, but Rebecca’s lead was insurmountable. Bruce could only find one blue tile and Holiday's red Ingenious was in vain, for Rebecca closed off the board with a small purple play. Holiday finished with only five blue in fourth place. Jeff had four colors at 15 or better but only had six orange, giving him third. Bruce was unable to improve his blue score from eight, but it was good enough for second place. Rebecca, with the table still marveling over her sensational play, finished with a score of 12 to win the tournament. All four finalists tasted the lead at some point during the game.

Before I conclude, I’d just like to thank a few people without whom I could not have run this event. While the previous GM, Max DuBoff, was unable to attend this year, he provided me with some valuable guidance to ensure a smooth transition. I am also indebted to Yoel Weiss who took care of all of the sign-ins and managed the numbers in each heat which would definitely not have run as quickly and efficiently without him. Lastly, thank you to all 132 players for supporting this year's tournament. It was an honor serving as your GM and I look forward to future WBC GM experiences.

2016 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 1
Bruce Rae, bc Jeff Cornett, FL Holiday Saccenti, MD Yoel Weiss, NJ Craig Thomas, VA
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
The five sections of the Seasons room
hosted both large and small events.
GM Yoni Weiss with his four
ever-so-smart finalists on their quest to genious.

Ingenious Junior 2016

Joe Yaure has inherited the family gene for public service and, therefore, again served time in the Juniors Room. There were 24 potential Rhodes scholars in attendance on Wednesday morning vying to see who was the most ingenious. The top six were:

  • 1st: Ethen Shipley-Tang
  • 2nd: Andrew Freeman, age 9 and second once again - the same runner-up status as last year
  • 3rd: Alex Freeman
  • 4th: Zach Morris
  • 5th: Aaron Byrd
  • 6th: Aaron Kaltman
When you're smart. you don't need a GM. Ethan Shipley-Tamg gets his prize from GM Joe Yaure.
GM  Yoni Weiss [1st Year]  NA