Exactly a hundred players in four sections competed in the July Joust chess tournament at Floris Elementary School on Sunday. In the K-3 U-400 section, Andy Chen, playing in his first ever rated tournament won all his games to take first place, and his teammate from Colvin Run, Michael Pang won three and drew one to take second. In the 4-8 U-400 section, Justin Li (fresh out of the Tournament Training Class!) went 4-0 to win the section, and to help lead a group of kids from Floris (including Neel Davuluri, Nathan Cheng, Anusha Bhatnagar and Gaurav Mantri) to take home the top team trophy for U-400.
In K-12 U-800, Evan Shi (also fresh out of Tournament Training!) dominated the competition, winning all his games. Saiteja Bevara, Capison Pang, and Jerry Wei tied for second through fourth, each winning three games and drawing one. Floris won this section as well, led by Rahul Gorijala's 2.5, with help from Kavin Ilanchezhian, Ashna Bhatnagar, Rajan Chidambaram, and Shreya Papneja.
Finally, in the K-12 Championship section, Andy Zhang (also just out of Tournament Training!) just beat out Bryan Zhao and John Lin on tiebreaks to take home the first place trophy. They each finished with three and a half points. Greenbriar West won the team competition, led by Andy and with help from Andrew J Song and Revanth Vejju.
This was also a special event because we had Grandmaster Jesse Kraai doing game analysis, which was extremely entertaining and informative.
The second session of Tournament Training ended on Sunday, and the results from the games are in the link above. There were some unusual and exciting games played, including this one, where one player had two queens for much of the game. Most of the focus in these classes is on the games played in the classes themselves, and this tends to help make the lessons more personal and effective. It's one thing to be told that it's important to castle, it's another to see a game where one player loses because they don't castle, and it's a third to look at your own game where you lose because you neglected to castle. Looking at a game right after playing it, especially with the help of a stronger player is spectacular way to learn and improve (and the player who lost because of a failure to castle castled promptly in his next game).
The next session starts on Sunday, July 17, and online registration is available here.