DCC January 2024 Report

3:50pm Saturday, February 3rd, 2024

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"There is a grass-roots energy to the fabric of this organization, a tangible camaraderie." 

The heading photo by Shirley Herman is a Chess Dad who brought his kids to the club just so they could play casual chess in the atmosphere of the DCC. How cool was that? I say it was way cool. Teaching a child to play chess means they always have something to do, instead of their chores or school homework :-)

Nicole Hagg - Chess Mom of DCC Scholastic Representative Phineas Hagg - has written an article promoting the DCC that has been published by American Chess Magazine in issue #36. Brian Wall immediately ordered a copy and renewed his subscription. Writing under her pen name Nicole B. Harris, her article will bring national recognition to the Denver Chess Club. Nicole perfectly titled her article, "Purveyors of Hope and Possibility". The Managing Editor of the magazine, Dusan Krunic, in his Editor's Letter, "Chess in America Keeps Growing" had this to say, "...you will read how locals from Denver have kept alive the spirit of their chess club, founded in 1859, written from the viewpoint of a non-chess-playing mom." 


A typical Tuesday night at the, as Nicole says, "world class" Denver Chess Club

Thank you kindly, Nicole, and thanks also to Mr. Krunic for publishing Nicole's work. Quoting Nicole from the article: "...by any number of measures, the Denver Chess Club is world class..." - "How do you quantify hope? How do you palpate possibility" - "...the all important balance between commitment to the mission and joy." - "There is a grass-roots energy to the fabric of this organization, a tangible camaraderie." 

I totally agree with Nicole when she credits Chris Peterson for our great "built from flint and stone" web page, and Dean Clow's caissachess  software. I'll always remember one Tuesday night when we were using SwissSys for pairings, Mr. Clow turned to me and said. "I can write something better than this", and did he ever!!  Also, let me mention that well known chess instructor, Todd Bardwick, has spent a lot of time and effort researching DCC and Colorado chess history. Contact Mr. Bardwick - tbardwick@yahoo.com - for links to his research documents. 


A Shirley Herman photo of row after row of chess players at the DCC.

So then, who won what in January at one of the best chess clubs in America. Where our attendance continues to be outstanding. Over 100 players registered for the 1st Tuesday night tournament of 2024. With more than 60 players playing each week. A great start to the new year. 


Eamon Montgomery (w) vs. Daniel Herman (b). Brian Wall (w) with a fresh snazzy haircut, is playing Forrest Lundstrom (b) 

In the Tuesday night Premier section, I'm glad to say, Mr. Colorado Chess, NM Brian Wall has got his mojo back. After a 1st round bye, Mr. Wall won his next four games to take 1st place and win 218 dollars. NM  Richard Shtivelband also played very well to take 2nd place with 4 points. Losing only to one of Colorado's newest USCF Masters, Daniel Herman. (Matthew Wofford also recently reached the 2200 level) Richard takes home 131 dollars. Mr. Herman ended up with 3.5 points to tie for 3rd place with Eamon Montgomery, and they both won 43 dollars and 50 cents. 


Yes, more proof that Brian Wall did get a haircut. Probably threw Eamon Montgomery off his game :-) Richard Shtivelband (b) against Mr. Lundstrom on the other board.

The 30 dollar Premier Best Upset prize was won by the youngster, Sai Dasari. for his big 351 rating point difference win over the strong Christopher Motley in round 4. The 20 dollar Honorable Mention Upset prize was won by Forrest Lundstrom for his 308 point win against strong Expert, Juan Brenes in round 3.

In the Tuesday night U1900 section, Kristopher Zelkin only gave up a round 4 draw to Benjamin DeGuire. He otherwise won all his games to take 1st place with 4.5 points and win 211 dollars. Seth Fortinsky took a round 4 bye, but upset every other player he played to take 2nd place with 4 points. The rating point difference totaled up to 659 points!! This fine play put 127 dollars in Mr.  Fortinsky's pocket.


 In the foreground Ben DeGuire (b) vs. Tyler Poole (w) - next board is a fine photo of Niall Case's hat, hoodie, and a couple of fingers playing Kristopher Zelkin.

Five players tied for 3rd Place. Ricardo Bogaert, Darshan Satishkumar, Arijit Chakraborty, Ben DeGuire, and Niall Case all finished with a 3.5 score and they each won 14 dollars and 8 cents. Karthika Sakthisaravanan won the 30 dollar Best Upset Prize when she slapped me around in round 3. The 20 dollar Honorable Mention Upset prize went to the youngster, James Corbett for his last round win against long time DCC player, Bill O'Neil.  


In the foreground, Richard Feit (b) vs. Pranav Male (w) Joe Aragon is recording his move against Tom Needham.

In the Tuesday night U1500 section I'm glad to see another long time DCC player, Joe Aragon, share 1st place with Pranav Male. Both players finished with 4 points and they each won 169 dollars. Richard Feit and Christopher Cox tied for 3rd place with 3.5 points and they both won 42 dollars and 25 cents. Mr. Cox's score included two huge upsets totaling up to 850 points!!  The actual 30 dollar Best Upset Prize was won by Dan Nolan for his 530 rating point difference round 1 win against Mr. Feit. The 20 dollar Honorable Mention Upset prize went to Anshul Singhal for his 463 point win over Enrico Moss, in round 3.  


 A great registration for round 1 of the DCC Thursday tournament. Rocco DeGeest is the youngster on the left, rushing to his board. 

At the Thursday night location, we had an over 50 player registration, with an average of 34 players playing each week. A significant increase in both cases. Many thanks are due to Richard Shtivelband for getting this location for the DCC. We aim to provide the opportunity for chess players to engage in their vocation as often as possible for prize money, USCF rating points, and the sheer joy of winning a hard fought game of chess.    


Daniel Herman (w) vs. Brian Wall. Have I mentioned that Mr. Wall got a haircut :-)

In the Thursday Night Premier section for once, Daniel Herman did not finish in clear 1st place. He was upset by the getting better by the game, Rocco DeGeest in round 1. Consequently, he had to win against Brian Wall in the last round to tie for 1st place with Mr. Colorado Chess. Daniel and Brian each won 112 dollars and 53 cents, with 3 point final scores. Finishing with 2 points, new to Colorado chess, Suchinder Kalyan tied for 3rd place with Alexander Steger and the youngster, Henry Kovacs. Who had to have played very well to draw Grayson Manuel and NM Shtivelband. Mr. Kalyan and Mr. Steger each won 24 dollars and 12 cents. Henry won the U1900 prize of 48 dollars and 24cents. 


Ben DeGuire (b) vs. Henry Kovacs

In the Thursday night U1600 and Unrated section, Will Evans had three big upset wins in his final 4 point score. The rating point difference totaled up to 463 points!! He won 128 dollars and 60 cents for his excellent play. The young Kaavya Sakthisaravanan finished with three wins and a round 2 bye, to take 2nd place and win 96 dollars and 45 cents.  Richard Teller, Pret Bram, and Benjamin Hanson all ended up with 3 points and they each pocket 16 dollars and 8 cents. Davin Barthold finished with 2.5 points and won the U1600 / U1300 prize of 48 dollars and 23 cents. The 20 dollar U1600 Upset prize was won by Nivid Singhal for his 388 rating point difference win over Shirley Herman in round 3. 


In the foreground Landon Hershey (b) vs. Kaavya Sakthisaravanan (w) Pret Bram (w) vs. Nivid Singhal (b) on the other board.  

Thanks to the DCC tournament directors and DCC officers who devote their time and effort and have made the DCC one of the best chess clubs anywhere. I know I've already mentioned that fact a time or two :-) Thanks also to Shirley Herman who took most of the photos used in this report. And of course, thanks to all the players who are supporting the DCC with their attendance at both weeknight locations and the DCC weekend tournaments. Thank you all kindly.

A great Games section this month which actually includes games from players other than Brian Wall. But of course, we'll start out with his games. 

6rk/2p5/1p5B/pbpP4/4B1Q1/P2P2P1/1q2nR1K/8 w - - 33 66
1) Brian Wall vs. Vedanth Margale. Thursday. Round 1. After 33... Re8-g8 Brian's move 34. Qg4-h4 is a winning move but can you see a mate in two? See answers after the last diagram. 

8/8/8/8/8/4K3/5nkp/8 w - - 78 156

2) Rocco DeGeest vs. Brian Wall. Thursday. Round 2. Final position. NM Wall says "The height of my advantage would be 11 ... d4!!  +3  if I played it. The last 50 moves were basically playing on my delay and trying to recreate the score later." Once again we see Pawn Wave Guy winning with a passed pawn.

1n1k2r1/1np2b2/1pNp1p1r/p2PpP2/1PP1P1PP/P4B2/1K5R/7R b - - 69 137
3) Brian Wall vs. Suchinder Kaylan Thursday. Round 3. Why is 69. Na7-c6 essentially a winning move? 

1k1r2r1/ppqb4/5P2/8/3p4/P3BQ2/2P3PP/1R2KBR1 b KQ - 22 43
4) Daniel Herman vs. Brian Wall  Thursday. Round 4. In this position after 22. Bxe3 capturing a Knight, Instead of ...dxe3 Brian interposed 22... Qc3+ and says "22...dxe3 is totally winning. I can't believe I lost this game" 

rnbq1r2/5pbk/p2p1npp/3pp3/2B1P1P1/2N1BPN1/PP1Q3P/R3K2R w KQ - 13 26
5) Brian Wall vs. Eamon Montgomery. Tuesday. Round 5. Black has just played 13... cxd5. Do you recapture with the Bishop or the Knight? NM Wall calls it a 218 dollar move. Meaning he took 1st place with his reply. 

1k3rr1/ppbb3p/4pB2/8/P3P2P/2P5/1PB3P1/R4R1K w - - 24 48
6) Brian Wall vs. Forrest Lundstrom Tuesday. Round 4. In this position after 24...Rdf8 Mr. Arrogant says, "Everything wins here. I have 400 extra rating points, two extra pawns plus a 21:14  to 3:20 time advantage. Game Over."

1k3rr1/ppbb3p/4pB2/4P3/P6P/2P5/1PB3P1/R4R1K b - - 25 49
6a) the same game after NM Wall replied with 25. e5. Now Mr. Humble says, "I played the unfortunate 25 e5? opening the Silk Highway to g2. Suddenly Forrest is getting tons of play. Frustrated and angry at the way things are going now, I start taking oodles of time to make bad moves. Each decision made things worse." (See a winning line for Mr. Lundstrom below.)

1k3r2/pp5B/4pB2/4P3/b5rP/2P5/1P3RP1/7K b - - 30 59
6b)  the same game But after 30. Bxh7, now Mr. Not Easy To Beat says "I was back on top in Exchange Sac Pawn Wave Mode" All's well that ends well.

r1bqkbnr/pppp1ppp/4p3/3Pn3/4PP2/8/PPP3PP/RNBQKBNR b KQkq f3 4 7
7) Alex Steger vs. Brian Wall. Tuesday. Round 3. I suppose anyone in this position would automatically move the Knight. Not NM Brian Wall. He says, "4 ... e6xd5!! discovered in Josh Bloomer's basement 20 years ago. See analysis on YouTube 

r1bqkb1r/ppp2p1p/2n2n2/3pp1p1/4P3/3P1N2/PPPNBPPP/R1BQK2R w KQkq g6 5 10
8) Brian Wall vs. Chris Motley. Tuesday. Round 2. I don't know how many chess openings with variations NM Wall keeps in his head but I do know it could be at a GM level. In the thousands. This is a position that he has named, "Inverted Hanham, Rhett Langseth System, Rhetti, Philidor's". Go ahead, look it up in your Opening book :-)

r6r/p3Q3/1p1pbBqp/8/5kp1/2P3N1/PP4PP/4R1K1 w - - 28 56
8a) the same game After 28...Kg5-f4 it's mate in one. This is a great King hunt game to play through. 

4r1k1/pp3p1p/1bp3p1/8/8/1PP2PP1/P1N2nKP/3B1R2 b - - 25 49
9) Landon Hershey vs. Tristan Cruz. Thursday. Round 1. After 25. Rh1-f1, how does Black win a piece? 

4r3/7k/3p3B/2pP4/3b2N1/P6P/1p4PK/8 w - - 39 78
10) Charles Larimer vs. Seth Fortinsky. Tuesday. Round 5. Final position. Mr. Fortinsky has done a Brian Wall style pawn wave. 

4r1k1/p1pb1ppp/3p4/2p3q1/2P5/1Q3P2/PBP3PP/1R4K1 b - - 22 43

11) Gera Cruz vs. Brent Renzi Tuesday. round 5. After 22. Qd3-b3, find mate in 3. as Mr. Renzi did. 

2k4r/1pp2pp1/5pr1/b2p4/Pn1P4/1RN1P2N/5PP1/1R4K1 w - - 24 48

12) George Vuxton. Vs. Gera Cruz. Round 4 Tuesday. Black has just played 24...Rh6-g6 making a threat. White goes for 2 pieces for a rook with 25 Rxb4, not noticing the Nh3 is no longer protected. 

4Q3/8/8/3R4/5k2/2P2Pp1/6K1/8 b - - 47 93

13) Von Kaenel vs. Gera Cruz. Tuesday Round 3. Final position. White has just Queened a pawn with 47. dxe8. An unfortunate promotion, since it left the Black King stalemated. 

r2q1r2/3b1pkp/1p1p1np1/pPpPp2n/P1P1P3/3B1N1P/3QNPP1/1R2R1K1 w - - 21 42

14) Seth Fortinsky vs. Jacob Decker. Tuesday. round 3. In this position after 21...Bc8-d7, what has Black overlooked? or ...Bd7 may have been a baiting move?

r1b1kbnr/pp1p1ppp/2n1p3/1N2q3/3NP3/3B4/PPP2PPP/R1BQK2R b KQkq - 7 13
15)  Gera Cruz vs.Pranav Male. Tuesday. Round2. Why was 7.Bf1-d3 not the best move. 

8/4n3/3k1p2/3Pp1p1/2P1K1Pp/8/5PB1/8 b - - 53 105
16) Ricardo Bogaert vs. SethFortinsky. Tuesday. Round 2. Final position. A hard fought draw has occurred.

r1b2rk1/pp4pp/2nqp3/3p4/3P1n2/3B1N2/PP1QNPPP/R4RK1 w - - 14 28
17) Daniel Herman vs. Grayson Manuel. Thursday. Round 1. I'm glad to see Grayson Manuel annotating this game. His comments are astute. For instance, after 14... Nh5-f4 Grayson says  "Another mistake. I did not realize how immediately my position could fall into shambles. I needed to leave the knight on the rim for now and break through with e5!?, opening up the bishop and hoping that my rooks could get to the open files in time." 

8/P1p3pk/2p4p/4q3/3p4/3Q3P/1PP3P1/6K1 b - - 31 61
18) Seth Fortinsky vs. Phineas Hagg. Tuesday. Round 1. Looks like an unstoppable 'a' pawn. Black resigned. 

Brian Wall's answer to diagrams #1, #3, #5, and 6a  

1) 7 moves mate quickly including my 34 Qh4!,the prettiest and shortest is 34. Qxg8+!!  Kxg8  35 Rxf8#

3) Mr. Kaylan has to decide whether to give the piece back after69 Nc6+!!  Nxc6  70  dxc6  trapping his Knight or allow 69 Nc6+!!  Kd7 70  g5! crashing through with a pawn wave.

5) Normally 14 Nxd5? looks great but here 14 Bxd5!  Nxd5  15 Qxd5! gives Eamon problems with a trapped Rook on a8.

6a) 25. e5?  Rg4 26. Rae1?  Bc6 27. Rf2?  Bb6 28. Ree2?  Rdf8!!  +2.5


Thanks again to all, 

J.C. MacNeil


Last Modified: 2/6/2024 at 2:25pm Views: 274