McNay, Neyhart win Senior Mixed Pairs
Roger McNay and Irva Neyhart of the Portland OR area won the Senior Mixed Pairs on Friday. It was their first NABC+ win, making McNay a Grand Life Master and leaving Neyhart about 1200 points short of that rank.
The pair was strong throughout the event, starting third after the first qualifying session with 60.93% and leading after the second with 63.69%, earning a carryover of 98.18 – almost four boards. In Friday’s final sessions, they scored 58.46% and 50.08%, finishing with 805.50 to win by about a quarter of a board.
In second were Markland Jones of Phoenix AZ and Patricia Dovell of Gainesville FL with 798.73 – just 0.56 matchpoints ahead of Louis Sachar and Marjorie Michelin.
McNay said the lesson from their win was not to go looking for good boards after a bad start. “In every session, after about 10 boards we were below average,” he said. “We didn’t go head-hunting. We just put our heads down and worked, and by the end we were ahead. I’m so proud of Irva. It’s so easy when you have a bad start to fall apart, and she never did.”
Neyhart, who won the Summer NAOBC Three-Day Pairs earlier this year, said she maintained composure during the game but was a wreck in between sessions. “I couldn’t eat dinner, I was so nervous. I didn’t sleep last night,” she said. “This has been a great year for me. My game improved. I really studied.”