It’s once again time to catch some tricks in Texico.
That’s the site for the third annual 42 state championship, set for Saturday afternoon at the Texico Senior Citizens Center.
The tournament is expected to draw between 20 and 25 teams, though tournament organizer Jerry Whitney said 30 is possible. There will be trophies for the top two finishing teams, and cash prizes that are so far undetermined for the top five places.
“This year, I got lodger’s tax money, so I was able to pay for advertising with that. I also got sponsorships. I’ll be able to use all entry fees as prizes. It will depend on the entries.”
The entry fee is $40 per two-person team.
The players come from as close as Melrose’s Bill Myers, who won last year’s championship with Dewey Pierce. They also come from as far away as San Antonio and Glenwood Springs, Colo.
Myers is hoping to pull the repeat, and has been playing the game for about 50 years. He said not much separates the champs from the also-rans.
“You’ve got to be lucky, you’ve got to draw lucky, you’ve got to have a good partner,” Myers said. “There’s no secret.”
The game is played with four to a table, with partners sitting across from each other. Each player draws seven of the 28 dominoes, and bids are made. The highest-scoring domino wins each round, or trick. Dominoes divisible by five are call honors and are worth their face value. Tricks are worth one point (seven total), and the honors are worth 35 total.
“It’s a very good, competitive strategy game,” Whitney said. “It takes a lot of offense, defense to win the game. You have to depend on your partner. You can’t do it alone.”
The first team to win seven hands takes the game, and whoever has the most wins after 10 games will take the title Saturday, Whitney said.
Other tie breakers include total points, points given up and a head-to-head if all other tiebreakers are exhausted.
Since most of the players are coming in Friday night, Whitney said, he figured it would be a good idea to have a warm-up tournament 7 p.m. Friday (registration running from 5-6:30 p.m.). That entry fee will be $10, with all entry fees going back as prizes.
What: 42 state championship
When: 7 p.m. Saturday
Where: Texico Senior Citizens Center
Cost: $40 per two-person team