OBJECTIVE OF 14 POINT TUNKHANNOCK PITCH: The objective of 14 Point Tunkhannock Pitch is to reach a score of 52.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 4 Players
MATERIALS: A Standard 52-card deck, 2 distinguishable jokers, a way to keep score, and a flat surface.
TYPE OF GAME: Trick-Taking Card Game
OVERVIEW OF 14 POINT TUNKHANNOCK PITCH
14 Point Tunkhannock Pitch is a trick-taking card game for 4 players. The goal is for your team to reach a score of 52 before your opponents.
This game can be played individually or with partnerships. Teammates will sit across from each other and share a score for the game.
The first dealer is chosen at random and passes to the left for each new deal.
This deck is shuffled and dealt out each player receiving 6 cards.
Card Rankings and Point Values
The trump suit is ranked Ace (high), King, Queen, Jack, off-Jack, high Joker, low joker, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2 (low). The off jack is the jack of the same color as the trump jack and is a part of the trump suit.
For bidding, there are points awarded to players who win certain cards or meet certain criteria during the game
There are points awarded to players who win certain cards or meet certain criteria during the game. The cards that score points are the jack of trumps, off-jack of trumps, and High and low jokers. These all score the team who wins them in a trick 1 point each.
There is also scoring for high, low, game, high spade, and last trick. High means the team that holds the highest trump in play scores 1 point. Low means the team that wins in a trick the lowest trump in play scores 1 point. The game point is awarded to whichever team scores the most points (discussed more below). High Spade means the team that wins in a trick the highest spade in-play scores 1 point. Finally, the last trick point is awarded to the team that wins the last trick played.
For the game, point players tally their score based on the cards they won in tricks. Each ace is worth 4 points, each king is worth 3, each queen is worth 2, each jack is worth 1, and each 10 is worth 10 points
The 5 of trumps is also scored. The winner of it scores 5 points.
There will be a total of 14 points up for grabs.
Once all players have received their hands the round of bidding can begin. The player on the dealer’s left will start and in turn, each player will bid higher than the previous or pass. Each player only gets one chance to bid. Players bid on how many of the above points they must win in a round.
The minimum bid is 3 and the maximum bid is called smudge (or 15).
A bid of smudge requires the pitcher’s team to score all 14 points in the round and win all 6 tricks.
If all other players pass the dealer must bid 3. The dealer can also steal by making an equal bid to the highest bid.
The bidding ends once the dealer bids or passes, or a bid of smudge is made. The winner is the highest bidder and they become the pitcher.
After the bid is completed, the pitcher chooses the trump suit. Each player will discard 3 cards and their hand is replenished with 3 new cards from the undealt deck.
The pitcher will lead to the first trick. Play proceeds in clockwise order. The following players may follow suit or play a trump. If they cannot follow suit, they may play a trump or any other card from their hand.
The trick is won by the highest-ranked trump, or if no trumps were played, the highest card of the suit led. The winner collects the cards from the trick and leads to the next trick a card of their choosing.
The round ends once all 6 tricks are played.
Scoring happens after each round.
The pitcher’s team will determine if they were successful in completing their bid. If they were successful, they score the number of points bid. If they were not successful, then the number bid is subtracted from their score. It is possible to have a negative score. The opposing team scores any points earned to their score as well.
If a smudge was made, then the pitcher(’s team) must have won all 14 points and all 6 tricks. if they were successful they score 15 points, and if not they lose 15 points.
END OF GAME
The game is played until a team reaches a score of 52 or more. This team wins.