DCC February 2024 Report

12:48pm Tuesday, March 5th, 2024

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... and the DCC is where we go to work :-) 

DCC attendance remains great. Again the total registration reached 100 players, and we had over 70 players for the first three rounds of the February tournament. Then on a freezing cold, snowy, winter night, 60 players still showed up for the last round. With most of them having no chance of winning place prize money. 


Grayson Manuel with the Black pieces

Indicating that they were at the DCC just to play a USCF rated game, despite the weather. Looking more for rating points rather than a monetary gain. However, even with just one game, there is always the chance to win one of the two Upset prizes the DCC has each month for each section. There is also the social aspect of meeting up with friends who share a common interest. I doubt if there is any other game playing group in Colorado that has anywhere near this level of attendance. Week after week, month after month. 


Casual players are welcome at the DCC. Evan is making a move against Joe Aragon, who had finished his tournament game.

With that shameless boasting about the DCC Tuesday night tournament participation out of the way, I'll get on to who won a slice of this month's 1418 dollar prize fund. Yes, really. We paid out One Thousand, Four Hundred and Eighteen dollars to DCC Tuesday night tournament players.  Attendance goes up; prize money payout goes up. 


Juan Brenes (b) vs. Richard Shtivelband (w) Eamon Montgomery (b) vs. Daniel Herman on the other board.

In the Tuesday night Premier section USCF Expert Eamon Montgomery took 1st place by winning against NM Richard Shtivelband in round 3, then he held USCF Master Daniel Herman to a last round draw, to end up with 3.5 points, which put 216 dollars in his pocket. Richard and Daniel, along with Rhett Langseth, all finished with 3 points to tie for 2nd and 3rd place, and each player won 72 dollars. 


1st board, Turpana Molina (b) vs. Grayson Manuel (w). Next board, Rhett Langseth (b) vs. Alex Steger (w)

Grayson Manuel (1796) won the 30 dollar Best Upset Prize when he won against Expert Torpana Molina (2047) in their last round game. The 20 dollar Honorable Mention Upset prize went to Don Wisdom (1678) when he held Joe Ford (1974) to 1st round draw. Note: when it's a draw it's half the rating point difference.


1st board, Brad Johnson (b) vs. Daniel Dugan (w) Next board, Ben DeGuire, (b) vs. Wyatt Wear (w)

In the Tuesday night U1900 section, after a long absence from the DCC, Brad Johnson made a statement by tying for 1st place with Ben DeGuire, Rayansh Agarwal, and Wyatt Wear. All four players finished with 3.5 points, and each player won 104 dollars and 50 cents. Mr. Wear (1308) also won the 20 dollar Honorable Mention Upset prize for his win against the strong Kristopher Zelkin (1820).

Of note is all of Mr. Wear's points were huge upsets that totaled up to a 1268 rating point difference!! I believe It's safe to say his 1308 USCF rating will be going up. The 30 dollar Best Upset prize was won by Ragul Thiyagarajan (1087) when he won against Jeff Norhden (1648) in round 2. I should also mention that Kyle Mollenkamp's 3 points were from upsetting much higher rated players. Once again it's clear you can't look at a player rating and assume an easy win.


 Tom Needham (w) vs.  Mark Kingsley (b)

I'm starting to think there are no easy wins at the DCC.  Mark Kingsley ruled the Tuesday night U1500 section. Finishing with two wins against higher rated players to end up with 4 points and take home the 209 dollar 1st place prize. Brett Renzi had three wins and a round 2 bye to finish in 2nd place and win 125 dollars for his fine play. Landon Hershey, Tom Needham, Enrico Moss, and Alexander Von Kaenel all ended up with 3 points and each player won 21 dollars.


Richard Eveleigh (b) vs. Brett Renzi (w)

Gera Cruz (652) won the 30 dollar Best Upset Prize by winning against Royce Haynes (1246) in round 1. Nicholas Brookins (930) won the 20 dollar Honorable Mention Upset Prize. He probably took some prize away from Mr. Hershey (1368) when he won their round 2 game. 


Thursday night attendance is good and getting better. Front center is Don Henery (w) vs. Landon Hershey (b)

It seems a little odd that we had a five round Thursday tournament in the shortest month of the year, but leap year added the extra day. What was not surprising was in the Thursday night Premier section Daniel Herman again took 1st place. With a round 3 bye and being held to a draw by Brian Wall he ended up with 4 points and won 147 dollars and 60 cents.. DCC Treasurer Luis Jimenez 91920) had a round 2 bye, but also had a big upset draw against NM Brian Wall (2200) in round 3, to finish with 3.5 points. Luis only lost to Mr. Herman in round 4. Thus Mr. Jimenez wins 110 dollars and 70 cents. He also won the 20 dollar Premier Upset Prize for his win over NM Wall.


Alexander Steger (w) vs. Daniel Herman (b)

Alexander Steger and Mr. Wall tied for 2nd place with 3 point scores and they each won 27 dollars and 68 cents. dollars. Mr. Stegar did not play in round 2, and lost to Mr. Herman in the last round. NM Wall (2200) was held to a last round upset draw by Kristopher Zelkin (1820) who also held Christopher Motley (2018) to a draw. Ben DeGuire (1616) also had an upset draw against Mr. Motley, and a big round 4 upset win against John Sutton (1877) Thus Mr. Zelkin and Mr. DeGuire ended up with 2.5 points and they share the U1900 prize of 55 dollars and 36 cents.


TD Weston Taylor is making a move against Ben Hanson

In the Thursday night U1600 and Unrated section, Benjamin Hanson is unrated but he apparently plays very well. He won all his games and with a round 2 bye finished with 4.5 points to take the 1st place prize of 147 dollars and 60 cents. Richard Teller lost his 1st round game to Wyatt Wear but then won 4 straight to finish with 4 points and win the 2nd place prize of 110 dollars and 70 cents. 


Maxel Powers (b) vs. Mark Kingsley (w)

The Thursday night TD, Weston Taylor, along with Maxel Powers, ended up with 3.5 points and they share the combined 3rd place, U1600, and U1300 prize, and each player won 55 dollars and 35 cents. The 20 dollar U1600 Upset Prize was won by Navid Singhal (826) when he won against James Corbett (1328) in round 2.  The total prize money payout comes to over 778 dollars. Adding that to the Tuesday night 1418 dollar prize fund means the DCC paid out 2196 dollars in prize money in February!! Never mind the 2 cents. :-) 


Kaavya Sakthisaravanan (w) vs. Navid Singhal (b) (w) All ages are welcome at any DCC Tournament. 

Congratulations to the prize winners and a Big THANK YOU to everyone who plays in DCC tournaments. You are why the DCC is one of the best chess clubs anywhere. Also, because we have the best TDs. We are all working on our game and the DCC is where we go to work :-) 

We have a terrific Games Section this month. As usual, we'll start out with NM Brian Wall's games, followed by, no less interesting, other Tuesday and Thursday night games. Enjoy a total of 21 games from Colorado chess players. 

rnbqkb1r/4pp1p/3p1np1/1NpP4/1pB1P3/8/PP3PPP/R1BQK1NR w KQkq - 8 16
1) Brian Wall vs. Forrest Lundstrom Thursday. Round 4. I continue to be amazed by NM Wall's opening knowledge. His comment on this position is: "Invented 35 years ago by NM Ed Boudrot and SM ( later IM) Joe Fang. Invented simultaneously 35 years ago by English players across the Pond. Nescafé Frappé attack, Fang-Boudrot Gambit. Not only does he remember the moves but also the source of the opening!!

8/6k1/P1R5/6K1/8/r6p/8/8 b - - 68 135
2) Daniel Herman vs. Brian Wall Thursday. Round 2. In this position, Brian played 68... Ra4 and the game soon ended in a draw. Gunnar Anderson spotted a winning move for Black. Can you?

3k4/2R3p1/p4p2/1N2p2p/p6P/P3P1P1/1P3PK1/4r3 w - - 37 74
2a) the same game  After 37...a6 Mr. Herman played 38. Rb7. What is a winning move that was missed? NM Wall says this was a "hard fought game" I think all of these two players' games have been and will be hard fought. 

1r6/1N1b1pk1/pQqP2pp/2p5/P1P2P2/8/4rRPP/1R4K1 b - - 30 59
3) Brian Wall vs. Vedant Margale  Thursday. Round 1. After 30. Rf1-f2, Brian says, "I have completely butchered my position in time pressure. Then saying Vedant had "30 ... Re1+!! ( called Hook and Ladder by Dana MacKenzie, GM Jesse Kraai and others ) 31 Rf1  Rxf1+  32 Kxf1 Qe4!! and suddenly all my pieces look completely idiotic while ... Bc6! looms" But Vedant played 30...Qxb6 and Brian saved the game. After 32.. Bd7-c8 NM Wall says "In mutual time pressure young Vedant thinks he's winning a Knight but that just unleashes a typical Brian Wall Pawn Wave."

2b2k2/3P1p2/1P4pp/p1N5/2P2P2/8/5KPP/8 b - - 36 71
3a) the same game. Final Position. Pawn Wave Guy strikes again. If you're playing NM Wall and he has a passed pawn, just resign :-) Brian saw a saving line that was "impossible to see" beginning with an alternative to Vedant's 32...Bd7-c8. Can you see the line that NM Wall saw.? See answers below after the last diagram.

5r1k/7p/2p5/p3Rpn1/P7/1P6/2P4P/2K2R2 b - - 32 63
4) Luis Jimenez vs. Brian Wall. Thursday. Round 3. Final Position. Quoting Mr. WalI "I entered a complex position I knew nothing about and got destroyed. That's how I learn, otherwise you spend your life in fear to play anything."

Now a couple of NM Wall's games from Karthika Sakthisaravana's "Kings of Chess" Saturday tournaments that she has organized at the Hoffman Aurora Library for the coming months. The next tournament  will be on April 6th. 

3r1rk1/p1p2ppp/1pn5/2b1p3/4P3/2P1nP2/PP1NK1PP/R1B1N2R w - - 15 30
5)  Brian Wall vs. Dean Brown. Round 3. With 15...Ng4-e3 Mr. Brown has just placed a Knight on what looks like a great square. Why is it not?

2rn2k1/pbq1b1r1/1p5Q/3nPB2/3P3P/P4N2/1P3PP1/R3R1K1 b - h3 22 43
6) Brian Wall vs. Reyansh Agarwal. Round 1. NM Wall credits his young opponent by saying, "Rey is another Denver player headed straight up for many years.". I think considering his opponent's rating (1597) Brian said, "This should have been easy, instead, it was an embarrassing debacle." and "This win felt like 100 losses". After 22. h4 what move does Black play that prompts Brian to say, "Everything is better for Agarwal now". In addition, he gives 22 ... Nf7!!, ... Qb8!, ... Qc4!, ... b5! 

r3r1k1/ppp1q1pp/2n2b2/7Q/3P4/4B3/PP3PPP/RN1R2K1 b - - 17 33
7) Gera Cruz vs. Davin Bathold. Thursday. Round 5. After 17. cxd4 - capturing a pawn - how does Black win an exchange?

3N4/p3b1kp/b3Q3/P1q3p1/1p3r2/8/1P3PBP/R2R2K1 w - - 25 50
8) Grayson Manuel vs. Torpana Molina. Tuesday Round 4. After 25...Kg8-f7 can White just ignore the attack on f2 and play 26. Rd1-d7?

8/p5p1/1n3k2/3p4/3P4/PPP2KP1/5P2/8 w - - 43 86
9) Pret Bram vs. Mark Kingsley. Thursday. Round 4. Final Position. Draw agreed. How does the Knight stop the pawns?

5k2/p1p2Bpp/8/2R5/5B1K/PQ2PP1P/6r1/5q2 b - - 30 59
10) Brandon Kieser vs. Gera Cruz. Thursday. Round 4. The White King has wandered into dangerous territory. Find mate in 5.

8/8/5pq1/3Qp1kp/3B4/5pPP/5P1K/8 b - - 58 115
11) Andrew Robichaud vs. Bill O'Neil. Tuesday. Round 3. Final Position. It seems as if White should be winning, but the result was marked as a draw.

8/p7/6k1/2p1K2p/Pp1pP3/1P1P4/2P5/8 w - - 51 102
12) Torpana Molina vs. Vedanth Peesapaty. Tuesday. Round 3. Mr. Molina let a possible win slip away when he played 52. Ke5-f4 in this position. What was a better move?

4r1k1/pp1q1p1p/6p1/3N4/1RPbr2P/3P1PP1/P2Q2K1/8 w - - 23 46
13) Tristan Cruz vs. Andrew Robichaud. Thursday. Round 3. Black has just played 24. Re6xe4 - capturing a Rook. Why was that a losing move? John Nunn's adage, Loose Pieces Drop Off, proves to be true once again.

1rb3k1/8/4p1p1/4q3/5r1P/1P4Q1/PKR5/7R w - - 35 70
14) Wyatt Wear vs. Mark Kingsley. Thursdays. Round 3. Final Position. Starting around move 20 it seemed to me that both players tried to lose :-) White was more successful. I hope both players know I'm joking with this comment.

r1b1k2r/ppp2ppp/3p4/8/1RBqP1P1/5P2/P1PB4/3QK2R w KQkq - 15 30
15) Mark Kingsley vs. Gera Cruz. Tuesday Round 2. What did Black overlook when he played 15 d7d6?

rn1r2k1/1b1q1ppp/p1pNp3/Pp6/n2PP3/B5P1/P1Q2PBP/1R3RK1 w - - 17 34
16) Richard Shtivelband vs. Torpana Molina. Tuesday. round 2. After 17. a4a5 Black not wanting to retreat played 17...Nb6-a4. How does NM Shtivelband win a piece? 

rn3rk1/pp3pp1/2p4p/6Q1/1q1R4/2N1P3/PPP3P1/5RK1 b - - 18 35
17) Gera Cruz vs. Niall Case Tuesday. Round 2. After 17... h6, attacking the White Queen Mr. Cruz played 18. Rd1-d4. Maybe thinking he takes, I take. What was wrong with that logic? 

r6b/ppp1n1k1/3p2P1/4pb2/2P5/3P2P1/PP2PPB1/R3K2R w KQ - 19 38
18) Tristan Cruz vs. Wyatt Wear. Tuesday. Round 2. Black played well to have two pieces for a Rook, after 19...Kf7-g7 but White went on the attack. 

1R3bk1/5p1p/4q1p1/pQ2Pp2/2pP1P2/2n4P/P5P1/1R4K1 w - - 35 70
19) Torpana Molina vs. John Sealander. Tuesday Round 1. After 35. Rb7-b8 Black tried to avoid a Queen trade by 35...Qc8-e6. Why didn't that work?

8/3N4/5Q1p/6p1/4bp2/2p2k2/P1q4P/4R1K1 w - - 42 84
20) Gera Cruz. vs. Royce Haynes Tuesday. Round 1. With fine play, beginning with 39. Qc8-f8 White forced Black into a mating net. Then with a couple of pawn sacrifices now has a mate in one.

4r1k1/pp3p1p/1bp3p1/8/8/1PPn1PP1/P1N3KP/3B3R b - - 24 47
21) Landon Hershey vs. Tristin Cruz Thursday. Round 1. After 23. b2b3, how does Black win a piece?

Gunnar  Anderson's answer to diagram #2 - 68. Rg3+ In reply to a question from Dean Clow about why 68. Rg3+ was winning, Chris Peterson replied: 

"Rg3+ has multiple purposes:
1. It disrupts white's ability to check the black king to the back rank
2. It sets the rook up to go Rg1 to shelter the black pawn from queening
3. It forces the white king away from the defense of h6, the square the white rook needs to prevent the black pawn from queening"

"The basic line is going to be 1... Rg3+ 2. King anywhere h2 and black is going to queen the pawn. I am not 100% convinced it is winning but black will have a queen. The far advanced a-pawn may be enough counter-play to hold a draw but it will be very difficult for white, especially in a time scramble." Thanks, Chris.

Brian Wall answer to diagram #2a - 38. Rxg7  axb5  39. g4! 
and to diagram # 3 - 32 ... a5!!  33 Rb3  Bxa4  34 Ra3 Rxb7  35 Rxa4  Ra7  36 d7  Rxd7  37 Rxa5  Rd4  38 Rxc5+  Rxf4+ =

Thanks again to all,
J.C. MacNeil



Last Modified: 3/16/2024 at 5:28pm Views: 319