Jeff Dobbins

Hot Chess in Vancouver (Updated)

On August 4th — the hottest day in three years — many of Oregon’s most dedicated chess players gathered in Vancouver, WA, to begin play at the 113th Annual U.S. Open chess tournament.Site of the US Open 2012 The vitality of the Northwest’s chess community was demonstrated by the U.S. Open Scholastic Tournament, which had 104 players registered — the same number as in Irvine, CA in 2010, but many more than in Orlando (33 players in 2011) and Indianapolis (35 players in 2009).  Some notable results for Oregon scholastic players in that event:

Congratulations to Seth Talyansky, who swept the field with 4.5/5 in the Elementary Championship Section, as well as to Andrea Botez and Marshal Xu, who ended with 3.5 in this highly competitive section.  In the HS/JHS Championship Section, no player was perfect, but on a day when 4.0/5 meant first place, the plus and even scores of Philip Weiss (3.0) and Grant Yu and Ethan Allison (2.5) were a good result.

In the HS/JHS U1200 section (that’s USCF U1200, not NWSRS), Jonathan Yau took a clear first place in light of his perfect 5.0 score.  Preston Fenimore (4.0) and Josiah Perkins and Benjamin Kleier (3.5) were close behind.  In the Elementary U1000 section, the best-placed Oregon players were Corbin Frias, who tied for first with a perfect 5.0, Gavin Zhang and Andre Klingler with 4.0, and Keshav Siddhartha and Aidan Garnder-O’Kearney with 3.5 points.

Some of our Oregon scholastic players chose to instead compete against the adults in the Weekend Swiss. Congratulations to Yogi Saputra and Takuma Sato-Duncan, who both had an excellent score of 4.0/5 and were just a half-point off the first place finishers.  Finally, we shouldn’t forget Oregon’s representatives at the Denker Tournament of HS Champions (Alexandra Botez) and the Barber Tournament of K-8 Champions (Aaron Grabinsky) who continue their competition through Tuesday afternoon.  Best of luck to both of them.

Well done to all the players, to the organizers, and to scholastic chess in the NW!

Summer Chess

Hopefully everyone is settled into their summer routine.  Although the summer tournament schedule is a little thinner than during the high winter and early spring season, there are still many opportunities to fit chess into your student’s busy summer.  Here are some upcoming options — remember you can always check the NWSRS calendar for updated information (and for details on the below events).

July 6: Tigard Grange Quads, 5:30pm. Easy-to-reach quads sponsored by OSCF Treasurer Steve Cousineau.

July 7: Laverne Park (Coquille) Summer Fun. 10am.  If you live on the South / Central Coast, or want to go visit for a while, stop by for this Saturday outdoor event!

July 13: Chess Odyssey Friday Night Quads.  6:15pm. The Friday night standby is here for the summer months.

July 14-15:  Summer Open at the Portland Chess Club. A two-day tournament with long time controls for advanced scholastic and adult players.  Great prep for the US Open!

July 27: Chess Odyssey Friday Night Quads.  6:15pm. Come brush up before the US Open!

July 28: Laverne Park (Coquille) Summer Fun. 10am. One more time!

July 28: G/60 at the Portland Chess Club. PCC’s monthly one-day tournament for advanced scholastic and adult players.

August 3: Tigard Grange Quads, 5:30pm AND Chess Odyssey Friday Night Quads.  6:15pm.

August 4-12: U.S. Open, Vancouver, WA.  The US Chess Federation’s premiere event comes to the local area.  In addition to the “big event” — the nine-round tournament with three different schedule options — there are many different side events, including bughouse, blitz, and scholastic tournaments.  Check the USCF website for more information.

August 24: Chess Odyssey Friday Night Quads.  6:15pm.

Coquille’s LaVerne Park Tourney: More to Come!

Umbrellas decorate the shelter at the Coquille Chess LaVerne Park Chess Tournament on June 23, the first of a series of three. Next two tournaments are July 7th and July 28th. Hopefully sunscreen instead of umbrellas will be needed at the future events!Despite constant rain the day before, Coquille’s Coach Nancy Keller did not cancel the LaVerne Park chess tournament on Saturday June 23.  She reports that the tourney was a success, though a bit damp:

Twelve true diehard chess players (and true Oregonians) attended the tournament which provided an opportunity to keep their chess skills primed during the summer.  Adults and scholastic players attended, including Aaron Grabinsky and Josiah Perkins — Coquille’s top two rated players, who are looking ahead to the US Chess Open they plan to attend in August.

Coach Keller announced that she could not control the lighting, the temperature, the noise level or the wetness, but she could guarantee fun.  There was no rain to start, but Coach Keller did not dare trust the skies and kept the tournament at tables she had collected under the yellow shelter the night before. The players huddled at their boards laid out on the three nearly dry picnic tables. Non-player family members played scrabble or caught salamanders at the nearby river.

Oregon Chess at USCF Elementary Championship

Praveer Sharan, Kyle Liu, and Colin Liu

Praveer Sharan, Kyle Liu, and Colin Liu

Congratulations to the Oregon elementary chess players who participated at the USCF Elementary (K-6) Championships in Nashville, TN, last weekend. In the K-3 Championship section, Praveer Sharan (a Primary Elite co-Champion at Seaside) had 6 points after seven rounds, tying for third place overall, while Colin Liu (third in Elementary Elite at Seaside) tied for top honors in his class (USCF rating 700-799), with 4.5 points during the tournament. In the K-1 section, Kyle Liu (the other Primary Elite co-Champion at Seaside) won 5 points and his own National Championship trophy.  Congratulations to all three of our Oregon participants!

For those of you looking to become involved in the national chess scene, the US Chess Federation web site lists numerous national tournaments.  Of particular note are two significant events coming in the next year:  First, one of the premiere events of the US Chess Federation’s year, the 2012 U.S. Open chess tournament, is being held this coming August in Vancouver, WA.  More experienced players can play in the main tournament (nine games, with schedules ranging from one a day to a three-day schedule), while scholastic players might want to try out the scholastic tournament to be held Aug. 4-5.  Second, and of particular relevance to our scholastic players, next April 5-7 brings Supernationals V to Nashville, TN.  Supernationals is a multi-day event combining all three major national scholastic championships (elementary, middle school, and high school) in one place — the Gaylord Opryland resort in Nashville.  It’s the weekend before the 8th Annual OSCF State Championship in Seaside, so you’ll be able to attend both events!

Spring 2012 All-Stars List

The Spring 2012 All-Stars list, which identifies the players active between January 1 and April 30 who achieved the top ten established (NWSRS or USCF) ratings, has been posted here. Those on this list, on the Winter 2012 list, or on the Summer 2012 or Lifetime Achievement lists (to be published in early September), are invited to the OSCF All-Stars Invitational Tournament, which we anticipate being held on October 12 this year. If you’d like to learn more about how to qualify, read about it here.

Seaside Statistics

The 2012 State Championship was the largest ever…thank you to everyone who helped make it happen!

  • 493 Students qualified for the tournament (around 400 last year)
  • 275 Students attended the tournament (268 last year)
  • 92 Players competed in Blitz on Friday Night (87 last year)
  • 164 Players (82 teams) competed in Bughouse on Friday Night (136 players / 68 teams last year)
  • 75 Place Trophies, 30 Honorable Mention Trophies, and 74 Plus and Equal Score Medals were awarded on Saturday.

2012 OSCF State Championship

The 2012 State Championship in Seaside came to a close last Saturday evening, and students from throughout the state headed for home with awards of all sorts, as well as the satisfaction of games well played. Over the next several days we’ll be posting more details about the tournament, but let us begin with a big “thank you” to all of you who came, participated, and volunteered throughout the weekend to make this yet another fun event for all the players.

Thanks to the hard work of Lisa Still, our registrar and treasurer over the last several years, the rating report for the tournament has been posted.