Junior High School Nationals: Day 1 Report
By Shaun Smith   
April 10, 2010
This spring the USCF decided to hold the JH Nationals in Minneapolis, MN (Check this link for pairings and results, which will be updated as soon as possible).  Having never been to this part of the country, I was excited to make the trip.   As the Tournament Manager for Chess-in-the-Schools in NYC, I come to each of the Spring Nationals to help coach our schools.  This year, Chess-in-the-Schools brought just over 100 students, accounting for about 10 percent of the total field of just under 1,000 players. The following schools from our program made the trip: PS 180m, MS 279x, MS 118x, and IS 318k.

IS 318k brought over 50 students this year and is competing in every section of the event except for the K-9 Unrated, as all players at IS 318k are immediately placed in rated sections once introduced to chess.  After round two, IS 318k from Williamsburg, Brooklyn is in first place in both the K-8 and K-9 Championship sections by two full points.  With the large number of strong players this school has in both sections, it will be tough for any school to catch them.  That being said, the individual titles in both sections could go to any one of the extremely talented players in both the K-8 and K-9 Championship sections. 

David Adelberg
The K-9 Championship section is currently being led by a large group of young experts headlined by David Adelberg at 2182 who are all at 2-0.  So far there have been a few upsets in the K-9 Championships, including Justin Karp (2061) of Horace Mann going down against Tristan Kaonohi (1732) from Hawaii.  As evidenced by Eldon Nakagawa's big win in the Blitz Tournament, these young players from Hawaii who have travelled further than anyone else are here to play some serious chess.

The K-8 Championship section is also being led by a large group of strong experts, including Dipro Chakraborty (2086), John Hughes (2084), Alexis Paredes (2037), Jeevam Karamsetty (2034), Brian Li (2017), and Nathan Lee (2011) with 2-0 scores.  Alexis Paredes of IS 318k shared the following game with me.


Alexis Paredes

Saturday will challenge everyone to play three games in the tournament's longest day.  The individual pairings will become more competitive and the team standings should start to tighten up.  As the action heats up, check back for updated standings and reports later in the day.

Photo Gallery:
Justus Williams

Linda Diaz

John Hughes

Michael Omori