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Indiana Chess Newsletter. *Published on 12/20/2017 by Gerry Roberts

The busy tournament schedule has inevitably been interrupted by the holidays and wintry weather, but fret not!  There are plenty of great events on the horizon, and plenty of results to comb through in the meantime.  For scholastic players, do not miss the chance to register for your regional qualifier to the SCI Individual Championships next month!  Entry fees are a modest $12 by Friday, but more than double to $25 afterwards.  And for everyone, find links below for games from the Indiana State Masters/Generations Championship, as well as for information about the Checkmate Hunger event just around the corner.
I. Tournament Recaps
Greenfield Quick Tournament – November 11
This inaugural event featured five rounds of G/15 d5 quick chess, and attracted 9 players from the Indianapolis metro area.  Perhaps owing to the quick time control, most of the players boasted provisional ratings, which led to many unexpected results.  Top-rated Cliff Aker, fresh off a fine performance only two weeks earlier at the State Championships, was toppled in rounds 2, 3, and 5.  Meanwhile, second-rated Jeff Jackson suffered a loss to a common opponent in round 3, and withdrew thereafter.  That common opponent was Donald Winslow, who paced the field with a 4.5/5 performance, upping his quick rating more than 200 points in the process.  To see the full crosstable, visit Mighty Pawns Tournament – November 11
The Bremen chess team sponsored its first open rated tournament for adults and students at their elementary school.  In the K-3 U700 section, the talented Catherine Lutz earned a score befitting her high rating, going 5-0 against a field of 16 peers.  Not all the favorites carried the day, however, as relative newcomer Luke Kincaid defeated both top of the top seeds in the K-6 U1000 section en route to a perfect score and hefty rating gain.  The biggest jump of the day, though, belonged to Goshen’s Logan Miller.  Entering the day as the 10th seed in a field of 14, he defeated four higher-rated players and drew another (the top seed, Bruce Stump, who tied for 1st).  For his efforts, he was rewarded with 301 fresh new rating points. In the Open section, Purdue’s Logan Cross continued his string of recent tournament successes, upending top-seeded Les Kistler in an early round 2 matchup before cruising to a perfect 4-0 day.  The full crosstable for the event can be found at Late Fall Open – November 11
A dozen strong class players from Indiana and Kentucky gathered on the border at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church for this four-round rated event.  In the end, it was Kentucky’s William Brooks who outclassed the field, defeating two higher-rated players as part of a perfect score.  The top-scoring Hoosier was Dallas Loven with 3-1.  The full crosstable can be found at

ISI Chess Challenge (Indianapolis) – November 11
In its second season of hosting rated events, the International School of Indiana continued its run of successful events, drawing 52 scholastic players from central Indiana.  In the K-3 section, top-rated Gavin Lass paced the field for three rounds before his final game agaist Timothy Cole resulted in a draw.  As a result, both players tied for 1st place.  In the 4th-6th section, top seeds Sunay Konnur and Michael Bao each went undefeated, but only the latter also managed to avoid draws to take home the trophy.  Finally, in the 12th/Under section, Bloomington’s Gael Medina defeated both Connor Rybka and Abhinay Mundrigi, but all three finished tied atop the scoreboard with 3-1 following two draws by Gael.  See the crosstable at

St. Joseph Grade School Open (South Bend) – November 19
Returning to the Ackles Center, this Sunday afternoon event broke the school’s attendance records with 65 players across four sections.  In the Novice section, Luke Waters – playing in only his second rated event – went undefeated in five rounds, besting 21 others in the largest section of the day.  In the Intermediate section, it was the tale of the two Gabriels:  Gabriel Polaniecki and Gabriel Klopper finished with identical 4-0 scores.  The Advanced section was split into two, so the “B” section was led by the young Yewei Chen’s perfect score.  In the “A” section, a penultimate round showdown between top seeds Gerald Roberts and Aiden Kaczanowski was narrowly decided in favor of the former player, securing first place honors.  The full crosstable for all sections can be found at

Indiana State Masters/Generations Championship (Columbus, IN) – December 2-3
Hosted at the beautiful Hotel Indigo in downtown Columbus, this event featured a modest 23 players – but plenty of excitement – in the Amateur and Senior Championships.  In the Amateur Section, Nikhil Datar was nicked for a draw in the last round by Dr. Dmitri Gusev, but still finished half a point ahead of his nearest competitors to take home the first place check.  In the Senior Championship, masters Jim Mills and Lester Van Meter joined expert Joshua Bousum and seven others for the right to represent Indiana at next year’s Tournament of Senior State Champions in Wisconsin.  All three games among the trio were drawn, but Lester’s final round draw against the Arthur Galstian removed him from contention.  In the end, Mills’ 3-1 score bested Bousum’s 3-1 score on the strength of tiebreaks.  ISCA members can view games from the tournament at, while everyone can view the final crosstable at

Winter Jam (West Lafayette) – December 2
Purdue University’s Stewart Center played host to this four round action tournament with 86 players in three sections.  In the K-3 division, the top two seeds – Gabriel Klopper and Michael Pu – each finished with 4-0 scores.  For Klopper, the final round represented his 10th consecutive victory.  There was an identical story in the 4th-8th division, where top-seeded Sam Liu and Naitik Rambhia each finished with perfect scores.  Thankfully, the Open division broke the monotony with a final round pairing between its top seeds, with the pre-tournament favorite Archit Mokashi managing to best former state champion Bernard Parham.  Archit may be provisionally-rated by USCF, but he is obviously no beginner.  To view the complete crosstable for the event, visit

Bloomington Winter Scholastic (Bloomington) – December 9
University Elementary School hosted the 11th edition of this popular scholastic event, attracting 94 talented young players from Indiana and Ohio. In the 1st/Under section, Childs Elementary student Robert Cole was the only representative from his school, but nonetheless he managed to finish atop the individual leaderboard on the strength of his 4.5/5 performance.  University Elementary won the team trophy on the strength of Liam Eads and Khanh Tran.  In the 3rd/Under section, Gabriel Klopper continued his dominant ways (see above), going 5-0 to keep his active winning streak at 15 games.  Klopper has gained nearly 550 rating points since he started playing tournament chess just two months ago.  Meanwhile, Bach Kieu led his Childs Elementary team to the first place trophy after his 4-1 performance, with Rogers-Binford Elementary finishing just half a point behind.  In the 6th/Under group, Timothy Chien En Lim and Faraz Hussain each finished the event with perfect scores, so an unrated blitz game was held to decide the first place trophy winner.  In the Armageddon finish, Timothy needed to win with the white pieces, and had two extra minutes to accomplish the task.  Though the clock situation gradually evened out, Timothy had converted his extra time into a material advantage, and managed to checkmate Faraz with a flurry of moves.  Still, Timothy’s performance wasn’t enough to power his Smoky Row team to the pinnacle, as they finished half a point shy of University Elementary and its quad of players each finishing with 3-1 scores.  Last but not least, the 12th/Under section was won by Canterbury 7th grader Ben Finkel after posting an impressive win against top-seeded Christopher Chow in the penultimate round, as well as a win against perennial Martinsville competitor Kevin Huang to close out the event.  Martinsville Wooden won the team trophy by a very large margin.  As the director, I wanted to issue a special thanks to all of the volunteers who helped set up and tear down, as well as the cooperative group of players and parents who made my day run smoothly.  The full crosstable can be found at

Goshen Winter Tournament (Goshen) – December 9
Report from the Joepye Chess Newsletter (subscribe at

“Not quite as big as last year, but big enough!  That describes the Goshen Winter Tournament, held Saturday, December 9, at the Goshen Middle School. Although we didn’t quite reach last year’s lofty total of 210 players, we did have 171, which was enough to make a good tournament in all 5 of the sections.  The event was a homecoming of sorts for a couple of the winners.  Logan Cross, a Goshen Middle School alumnus, returned to his old stomping grounds to take clear first in the Open Section.  Logan was nicked for a draw by Stuart Krahn in the third round, but came back to upset Expert Ben Bentrup in the finale to finish with 3.5 points.  Good job, Logan.  An alumnus of less recent vintage won the Reserve section with a perfect 5-0 score.  Josh Keister came back after a long break from competitive chess to sweep the Reserve. Let’s hope Josh keeps playing now that he’s put his toe back in the water.  In the Novice Grades 7-12 & Adult section, Seth Conkle, a home school student from Ligonier, was perfect for the day to take clear first.  In Novice Grades 4-6, Quinn Shreiner Landes beat back all challengers to go 6-0 and take clear first.  The Novice K-3 section was topped by Jacob Stump.  Jacob had one draw to go with 5 wins to finish alone on top with 5.5 points.

The student/parent trophy was captured by Ben Bentrup with son John. Last year’s co-winners, the Olivers and the Smiths, tied again this year with very good results, but both were very narrowly edged out by Ben and John.  Complete results are available at and you will find a link to the USCF crosstable there as well.

My apologies for getting off to a late start – again.  Just can’t seem to get going when I want.  Thanks for your patience.  And thanks to all for the excellent tear-down help.”

II. Hoosiers Win Abroad
26th Annual Kings Island Open (Blue Ash, OH) – November 10-12
Just northeast of Cincinnati, this event is one of the Midwest’s largest each year, with a prize fund of $30,000 and attendance of more than 300 players.  With 7 sections (Open, U2100, U1900, U1700, U1500, U1250, U1000) each playing five rounds, Hoosiers managed to place in the top 10 in more than half the sections.  In the U2100 group, Bernard Parham II finished in a tie for 10th place with his 3/5 performance.  In the U1900 group, Dr. Arthur Galstian posted an identical T-10 result and 3/5 score.  In the U1700 section, both Daymion Phillips and Braydon Povinelli finished in a tie for 7th place on the strength of their 3.5/5 scores.  The best result by an Indiana player, though, came in the U1250 section, where Timothy Chien En Lim finished in a tie for 2nd place with 4 points.  Congratulations to all of the competitors, and thanks for representing our state so well.  The full results can be found at

Motor City Open (Dearborn, MI) – November 24-26
Indiana’s David Masse impressed in the U1400 section, finishing in a tie for 5th place after losing only to the eventual winner.  David earned his first established rating of nearly 1200, a full 21 years after playing in his first event.  One can only hope that his success results in more frequent tournament activity.  Otherwise, look for David to win the U1800 section of the World Open in 2038.  The full crosstable can be found at

III. Tournament Calendar
SCI Individual Regionals (Hammond, Terre Haute, Evansville, Goshen, Indianapolis) – January 6 and 13
Registration details and links are now available for the 2018 SCI Individual Regional tournaments.  Hosted across the state on January 6 (Hammond, Terre Haute) and January 13 (Evansville, Goshen, Indianapolis), these events decide the qualifiers for the SCI Individual Championships in Indianapolis to be held on January 27.  Remember that this event not only decides who Indiana’s representatives are to the Denker Tournament of High School Champions and Barber Tournament of K-8 Champions, but also awards scholarship money to the top finishers in the 6th/Under Championship, 8th/Under Championship, and 12th/Under Championship.  You can only play in one regional.  The regional events themselves are not rated, so USCF memberships are not required.  Instead, all it takes to play is $12 if you register before December 22, or $25 thereafter.  There are junior varsity sections (limited by ratings) for all grade levels except 3rd/Under, so there really are options for everyone to play and succeed.  For general information about the tournaments, click here.  To register, visit here.  Online entries are immediately posted here.

Toledo January Swiss (Toledo, OH) – January 13
Hosted at the University of Toledo Health Science Campus (Mulford Library – Basement Cafe, 3000 Arlington Ave., Toledo, OH 43614), this recurring event has a time control of G/75 d5 for round 1, and G/85 d5 for rounds 2-4.  Onsite registration ($25) is available from 9:00am-10:00am, or you can register in advance for $20 by mail (see for the address or additional details).

Sixth Annual Checkmate Hunger Chess Tournament (Warsaw, IN) – January 13
Warsaw Community Schools invites players young and old to this perennial favorite.  There are six sections for rated and unrated players, so this truly is an event for all players: Unrated K-3, Unrated 4-5, Unrated 6-12, Unrated Adult, U1200 Rated, and Open Rated.  ALL PLAYERS will go home with a trophy or medallion.  Full details can be found at, while registration (just $8 online!) can be completed at  Early entries are posted at, but expect the list to grow exponentially in the coming weeks.  The winter months are typically the slowest on the tournament schedule, so don’t miss this great chance to keep your game warm.  Questions?  Email Joe Riegsecker at

Wabash Quads (Wabash) – SUNDAY, February 4
On the first Sunday of even-numbered months, Terry LeMaster directs quads at The Access Youth Center in Wabash, Indiana (approximately halfway between Fort Wayne and Kokomo).  For those unfamiliar with the quad structure, all of the registered players are ordered by rating, grouped into sets of four players, and then paired against each other player in their section.  As opposed to large Swiss events, this means that you get three games against players with similar ratings to your own.  Time control is a leisurely G/85 with a 5-second delay with rounds beginning promptly at 10:00am.  Entries are $25, including lunch and prize fund, but must be submitted in advance by mail to 35 E Market St, Wabash, IN 46992, by email to, or by phone to 260-571-7802.  Recent events have attracted upwards of 8 to 16 players, ranging from 1000’s to 2100’s (not limited to scholastic players), so consider making the trip.

Southern Indiana Open/Reserve (Bloomington) – February 10
This event returns to the Holiday Inn in Bloomington for the fourth consecutive year, with a drastically increased prize fund and a new section.  Given the overwhelming attendance last year, this year’s iteration will feature a separate Reserve (U1800) section, with everyone playing 4-SS G/70 d5.  Also departing from recent practice, ISCA membership is NOT required to play in the event, but members’ entry fees are reduced by $5.  Otherwise, entries are $45 in advance by February 6, or $60 onsite (before 9am).  For more information, visit the ISCA Tournament Calendar, or email director Craig Hines here.  Online registration is now available at

SCI Team Regionals (Terre Haute, Mt. Vernon, Hammond, Goshen) – February 17 and 24
Regional Qualifiers for the SCI Team Championships will be held on February 17(Terre Haute, Mt. Vernon) and February 24 (Hammon, Goshen) this year.  Teams can sign up for the 3rd/Under, 6th/Under, or 8th/Under sections, with top finishers awarded a spot at the State Finals in Terre Haute on March 24.  As always, 12th/Under teams do not need to qualify.  Registration is not yet available, but check back periodically here for more information.

U.S. Amateur Team Championship North (Schaumburg, IL) – February 16-18
Gather your favorite chess buddies and plan your trek to Chicagoland in February for this annual favorite.  Four-person teams with an average rating below 2200 will compete for an array of prizes (top overall, top class, best name, best costumes, etc.).  Full details are in the TLA here.

77th Indiana State Chess Championships (Indianapolis) – April 20-22
Save the date!  Details will be announced soon at, but expect some of the usual features: Open and U1800 sections, a blitz championship on Saturday night, the annual membership meeting on Sunday, and live broadcasts of the top boards online.  As a quick reminder, the membership voted to move the championship to the spring to align with other state championship events and avoid common scheduling conflicts in the fall.  If you have any preliminary questions, send me an email at

USCF Rated Online Chess – Every Week
The USCF runs rated blitz and quick tournaments on the servers.  And best of all, it’s free for USCF members to play.  Every Monday night at 6pm, verified members can play in a 5-round, G/10 Swiss system tournament for real rating points.  If that’s too early for you, there’s also a 7-round G/5 tournament at 11pm.The blitz continues on Wednesdays, where players can sign up for a 7-round 3/2 tournament beginning at 8pm.  For those preferring slightly longer time controls, you can catch the 15/10 tournament on Friday nights at 8pm.  To be eligible to play, just fill out the verification form located here.

IV. Chess Clubs
South Bend Regional Chess Club – Thursdays at 7:00pm
Michiana’s strongest chess club meets on Thursday nights from 7:00pm-10:00pm in the deli area of Meijer on Grape Road in Mishawaka.  There is an organized event every meeting, ranging from G/5 round robins to G/20 Swisses.  The standard deviation on attendance is high, with meetings ranging anywhere from 8 to 30 players, but with regular attendees including masters John Cole and Dennis Monokroussos, who can afford to miss out?

Chicory Cafe Chess Club (South Bend) – Mondays from 6:00-8:00pm
Come and play some casual games of chess at the Chicory Cafe at the corner of Jefferson and Michigan in downtown South Bend.  While you’re there, be sure to enjoy the New Orleans-style food and fun atmosphere for both young and old.

BISCC Library Chapter (Bloomington) – alternating Sundays at 1:30pm
The Bloomington Indiana Scholastic Chess Club’s library chapter meets on alternating Sundays from 1:30pm-3:30pm in rooms 1B/1C of the Monroe County Public Library. Several of the area’s top scholastic players are regular attendees, but each session includes a lesson for beginners as well as a weekly activity.  Your first meeting is free to attend, so stop by to see if it would be a good fit for you and your child.  For more details about the club, visit BISCC’s revamped website at, which now includes an option for online registration.

Bloomington Chess Club – Tuesdays at 7:00pm
The Bloomington Chess Club meets every Tuesday from 7:00pm-10:00pm at Buffa Louie’s.  Come play in a relaxed environment while enjoying great food.  Games are frequently played at rapid time controls (G/20 or G/15), blitz (G/5), as well as un-timed, so there’s a little bit of something for everybody.

Other Clubs in the State
For a non-exhaustive list of other city or regional clubs in the state, please visit  Please note that the information listed there may not be up-to-date, so you should always contact a representative of the club in advance.  If you have trouble locating contact information, send me an email and I will do my utmost to connect you with the right person.

Gerry Roberts