This weekend past was a triumph for Illinois and regional chess.
Land of Lincolners competed well in multiple events here in Northern Illinois and in nearby states.
At the Milwaukee-area Arpad ELO, former "Last Saturday" winner Brian Villlarreal tied for first (4.5/5), while Illinois' Eric Rosen won the 2001 National High School Championship held this weekend in Tennessee (7.0/7).
Expert Lawrence Cohen defeated young Alex Bian in the upper section of the Joliet Junior College Spring Quads.
In DeKalb, and nearest and dearest to the readers of this blog, Joe Guth triumphed over Phil Jarrette in a fascinating third round match. This gave Joe the victory in the six-person "Royal Wedding' section and put him over the magic 1800-mark for the first time.
Congratulations to Joe for achieving that personal milestone! 2000 is around the corner!
And thank you Phil for returning to our boards amidst the cornfields -- you've been missed!
In the "Commoners" section, DeKalb's John Schaeffer was the sole undefeated entrant among a field of ten, while Sycamore's Don Reyes took a clear second with 2.5/3.
As much as we love attracting tournaments entrants from far and wide, it's great to see DeKalb Club members walking away with the prizes!
After a 3-month hiatus, Dr. Schaeffer returned above the 1400-level with a 51 point bolstering to his rating. This marks the forth time in his seven-year USCF tournament life that he's bobbed above "C-level" (1400-1599) and places him within 9 points of his all-time high. Keep it up, John!
Don Reyes is the most experienced tournament player amongst our regular club attendees with over 100 USCF events under his belt. By virtue of his terrific showing Saturday, he climbed to within 26 rating points of his all-time high, which he achieved in 2005. Is 1400 within Don's not-too-distant future?
As we all saw early Friday morning from across the pond, even commoners can become royalty! So keep at it, John and Don!
The Royal section fielded a respectable 1656 average rating while the Commoners minion averaged 1215.
By hitting 16 entrants, we were able to split the field into dual sections, allowing for closer-matched competition. As long as we're able to attract at least that amount in the future, we'll continue to host tournaments.
It was announced that the DeKalb club would host another "Last Saturday" event June 25. This drew applause from the tournament attendees, obviously looking for something to do with their hands after an afternoon of pushing pawns in reverential silence.
At this juncture, the DeKalb event is the only Illinois tournament scheduled for that day according to the Illinois Chess Association calendar. Here's hoping for a little cross-club cooperation and a demonstrable turn out.
After hosting 7 open events in four months, the DeKalb Club will take a well-earned break for May. Hope to see you June 25.