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JSS-Savannah, GA

Bruce Cline

Subject: Junior Super Series - Savannah, GA
From: Bruce Cline (level 1)

The event was held April 23, 2000 at MorningStar Games. Registration opened at noon and the first round began promptly at 1PM. Outside of a mad scramble to get one of the two available computers to talk to one of the three available printers, the registration process was uneventful. Deck lists were checked and the players were allowed to correct problems such as illegal cards or number of cards before play began.

John Loniak, a recently promoted level 3.(congratulations John), head judged the event while myself and Rick Slack, a recently certified level 1, assisted. I handled the data entry and generated the result entry slips while John and Rick worked the floor. April 23 happened to be Easter Sunday and unfortunately we only had 11 participants, but never the less we made every effort to simulated the Premier Tournament experience. Our tables were numbered, pairings were posted, and correct completion of Result Entry Slips was required. The event progressed fluidly, but the mechanics of this tournament are not what I wanted to write about.

Although the players in this event were young, they understood the significance of this event and played as such. Many times hands were shaking too badly to riffle shuffle and voices were too stammered to make complete sentences. Some had played in our local events, but have always been hammered by the older, more experienced players. Now they were in an event they could win and were experiencing tournament pressures for the first time. It is important as a judge to understand this because it may have looked like another local Sunday tourney, but to the players it was much more. For young players, the Junior Super Series is the Pro Tour and judges should conduct themselves and the event as such. This was the first time I ever saw a young man after a tough loss in the Semifinals with a flushed face and tears in his eyes, shake the victor's hand and wish him luck in the finals. It was also the first time I ever heard a parent cheer after her son's victory in the final match.

I commend Wizards of the Coast, MorningStar Games, and the rest of the retailers that make these wonderful events happen. I am very proud to have been a part of Savannah, GA's first Junior Super Series Challenge.

Bruce A. Cline

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