Spokane Chess Club



Club Meetings
Recent Results
Club Championship
E. Washington Open
Club Grand Prix
Inland Empire Open
City Championship
Collyer Memorial
Area Events
Scholastic Events
Game Corner
Moscow Man
Remembering 2009
Chess Links
Contact Us


Area Event Updates

Check out several events coming up in the next couple of months by clicking on the Area Events link above!


Currently at Club


        The popular Winter Championship started its five week run on January 21with 20 players entered in this g/2 event.  As the result of two first round byes and three second round draws, the field of undefeated players has already been reduced to only two!  Thus, Michael Cambareri and Brad Bodie will meet in a one versus two matchup in the third round -- much earlier than expected for a five round event! The rest of the field is tightly bunched, as expected after only two rounds, making it likely that most prizes will only be decided in the final round.

        The January 14 meeting featured some group play -- Michael Cambareri took on eight players, while Colin Phelps edged the team of Brad Bodie and Jim Waugh 3-2.

        Club resumed January 7 after its annual holiday break with 16 players in attendance, 11 of whom took part in a g/25(d3) Quick Tourney.  Brad Bodie and Michael Cambareri drew their final round encounter en route to winning the event with scores of 3.5.  Alex Herron (3.0) won the u/1600 prize while Jim Burney and Colin Phelps (2.0) shared the u/1400 prize.




        As usual, the beginning of the new year bring into sight the club's premier tourney, the Dave Collyer Memorial.  This year's event, the 24th, will be played February 27-28 at a new location, the Millwood Presbyterian Church's Community Center.  The address is 3223 N. Marguerite.  The location is an easy destination from the freeway -- exit 287 (Argonne Road) off I-90, then head north on Argonne one mile until the light at Euclid.  Turn left about two blocks.  The community center is the new addition on the west end of the church property.  For those of your familiar with the valley, West Valley High School is only a few blocks to the south.

        IM John Donaldson is once again appearing at the event.  He will give his annual lecture at Riverpark Square's Kress Gallery  Friday night (February 26) before playing a simul.  NM Jim Maki of Coeur d'Alene also will be playing in the tourney, giving the event 2300+ players on the top two boards!  Entries have already started coming in.  Check the flyer on our Area Events page (link at left) and let Kevin Korsmo know that you are coming!

        Jerry Morton has emailed in his entry -- all the way from Tashkent, Uzbekistan!



        Gonzaga Prep freshman Alex Herron edged top seed Alexander Nguyen, a Ferris sophomore, in their final round encounter to win the GSL Individual Championship with a perfect 5.0 score.  Herron dropped a bishop in the early middle game when Nguyen defended against the tactics, but was later able to force his connected e and d pawns to the seventh rank to claim the come from behind victory.  Nguyen's score of four points tied him for second with Prep senior Daniel Bassler, Prep sophomore Alexander Carlson, and Community School sophomore David Peoples.  The four played a two round blitz play-off to win the second place trophy, with Carlson stopping Bassler and Nguyen en route to taking the prize home.  Shadle Park junior Reese Duncan secured the prize for the largest upset.

        There were 25 players competing in this year's event at Rogers High School on January 15.  Transportation difficulties kept seven Lakeside players from attending, but they can be expected to augment the ranks for the GSL team championship on March 4.  The flyer for that event can be found on our Scholastic Events page. 



    The club's Grand Prix standings have been updated through December 31, 2015, the mid-point of the season.  Travis Miller has a three point lead over Michael Cambareri in the battle for the club's Grand Prix championship.  See complete standings, including the leaders in the biggest upset categories, on our Grand Prix page (link at left).



        It was nearly a year ago that we reported on the untimely death of Robert Dirks in a train accident in New York.  Robert, while in high school, won the Spokane Chess Club's championship before heading off to college and graduate school.  A brilliant mathematician and an all around great person, Robert worked in nanotechnology and was recognized as one of the world-wide leaders in the field.  A prize in Robert's name to be awarded to young researchers in the field has been created at CalTech.  A story about Robert and the prize can be found at this link: http://dirksprize.caltech.edu/.




        Brad Bodie is now the club president, taking over upon the resignation of David Dussome.  David took a position in Seattle and moved following the club's December 10th meeting. 


Havrilla tops in G/10 Tourney

        The annual Uncle's g/10 tourney was held at Uncle's Games at the Spokane Valley Mall, on November 21.  Recovery from the massive storm damage limited player turnout, but seven hardy souls ventured to the mall, including two from Montana!  Mark Havrilla topped the double round robin event with a score of 11.0 (from 12.0).  Brothers Braxton and Garrett Casey tied for second with scores of 8.0.  Braxton took the second place gift certificate prize, while Garrett won the u/1400 prize and the biggest upset prize. 

        The USCF cross table link is posted on our Recent Results page (link at left).


Recently at Club

    The last club meeting of the calendar year saw double round robin blitz play on December 17.  Brad Bodie and Kevin Korsmo tied for first, with Loyd Willaford (now of Seatle) finishing just behind.  The cross table is posted on our Recent Results page.

   Michael Cambareri scored 3.5 to edge the 14-player field in a four round quick tourney played December 3 & 10.  Nikolay Bulakh, David Dussome, Travis Miller, and young Alex Popescu tied for second at 3.0.  Austin Yeo was best u/1600 with a score of 2.5.  The cross table is posted on our Recent Results page (link at left).

    The Turkey Quads occupied the three club meetings in November.   In Quad A, David Dussome defeated Michael Cambareri in a make-up game to take Quad A with a 2.5 score against Michael's 2.0.  Alex Nguyen was a perfect 3.0 score to win Quad B.  Quad C saw a tie at 2.0 between Sam Comi and Tito Tinajero.  Quad D saw the only other perfect 3.0 score  with Bill Rottmayer sweeping the section.  Quad E saw a three-way tie at 2.0 among Logan Faulkner, Arlene Hiatt, and Paul Mahugh.  Congratulations to all the winners!


Scholastic Report

Hot Competition at the Frosty Pawn


Garrett Casey's perfect 5.0 came at the expense of half of the players in the top ten in the 23-player upper section of the Frosty Pawn youth chess tournament 9 January 2016. He beat Logan Faulkner (4.0) in the fourth round. Faulkner captured second place overall because his defeat of the other two with 4.0 in earlier rounds gave him better tie-breaks. Toby Kast (4.0) took home the trophy for top fifth grader, while Mathew Wasson (4.0) won the fourth grade trophy. The top sixth grader, Mia Sponseller, was one of eight players sharing 5th through 12th place with 3.0. Also with 3.0 were the top eighth grader, Adrian Roberts, and Malia Brown, who won the biggest upset. Nicholas Dawson, the top seventh grader, finished with 2.0. Connor Gosselin-Harris, a third grader, finished with 3.0, but his option to play up deprived him of a trophy because he did not finish in the top two.

 The K-3 section proved once again that there is considerable equality among most of Spokane's top elementary players. After three rounds, the Arquette sisters stood atop the standings with 3.0. Evelyn was paired in round four with Ben Barrett who had 2.5, while Elizabeth faced Olivia Hilton, also at 2.5. Ben and Olivia had drawn in round two. Both Ben and Olivia won their games against the Arquette sisters. In the last round, Ben played Elizabeth and Olivia battled Evelyn. Again, Ben and Olivia won. Hence, Ben and Olivia finished tied atop the standings with 4.5 each. Moreover, each had faced the same opponents in three of the five rounds. Both had defeated a player who finished with 2.0 as well. The crucial difference became Ben's round three win over Rohan Dhillon (4.0), while Olivia's other win was against a player who finished with 1.5. Ben won first place overall; Olivia placed second. Rohan was third overall and took home the trophy for top third grader. Also with 4.0 was the top second grader, Arnav Wadikar, his only loss was to Evelyn (3.0). Elizabeth (3.0) was the top first grader. Aaron Pooler (3.0) won the prize for biggets upset.

 In the team competition, Pioneer's 15.5 top-four combined score overwhelmed the competition. Host school First Presbyterian was second with 12.0. Anand Wadikar was again perfect in the Parent's tournament. Combining his score with his son's 4.0 edged out the Hiltons by 0.5 point for the parent-child team prize.


Holiday Scholastic


Ten days prior to the Frosty Pawn, Inland Chess Academy hosted the Holiday Scholastic on 30 December 2015 after a two-day chess camp. Five players finished atop the Holiday Scholastic with 4.0. In tie-break order, they were Cameron Simonds, Kara Chiang, Aniketh Parlapalli, Arnav Wadikar, and Kolby Uhlenkott. In their individual games, Cameron beat Kara, but lost to Aniketh. Aniketh's sole loss was to Jackson Florence (3.5) who also drew Noah Kuhn. Noah lost only to Aniketh. Arnav lost only to Connor Simonds (3.0) who fell to Kolby and Noah. Kolby's only loss was to Kara. From these results, it becomes very hard to predict results of any match-ups between any of the top eight players.

 Trophies were awarded as follows: First place, Cameron; second place, Kara; top fourth grader, Aniketh; top second grader, Arnav; top fifth grader, Kolby. Jackson won the biggest upset. Noah was to top player under 700 and Connor was second u/700. The top third grader was Ananya Parlapalli (3.0). Lachlan Cunningham (2.5) won the prize for top sixth grader; Cooper Florence (2.0) was first in first grade; and Brennan Cunningham (1.5) was the top kindergarten player.

 The team competition took the top three scores from each school. Pioneer (10.0) prevailed over The Oaks (8.5) and Cataldo (7.5). Other teams had fewer than three players.



        The Spokane CC continent was out in force for the 2015 Turkey Open in Missoula on November 7-8.  Led by club alum John Julian, 13 club members from Washington and Idaho were part of the field of 38.  The top four boards were from club, and Sandpoint's Savanna Naccarato spent most of the tourney playing on the top three boards.  Julian, playing his first rated tourney in 15 months, won the event with a 4.5 score after topping Nikolay Bulakh (4.0) in their final round board one encounter. Nikolay's 4.0 tied him with Brad Bodie and Jim Skovron for second place.  Strong performances were turned in by the large youth contingent present at the event (your editor donated quite a few rating points to the under 20 crowd).  Braxton Casey (up 62 points) and Savanna (up 58 points) had two of the strongest performances by local players.

        As usual, this was again a fun event.  The Turkey Open should be on everyone's travel list.


    First round Turkey Open action with Missoula, Montana veteran Ron Erickson featured in the foreground.       

The USCF cross table link: http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain.php?201511087472



        The Fall Championship was settled in the fifth round played October 15 when Travis Miller topped Michael Cambareri in their board one encounter to claim the title of Fall Champion with a score of 4.5.  Second place went to Jeremy Krasin (4.0).  The u/1800 section was shared by John Frostad and Kevin Korsmo (3.0), who drew their fifth round game.  Four players shared the u/1600 prize with scores of 2.5: Ted Baker, Dave Griffin, Ron Weyland, and Austin Yeo.  Arlene Hiatt captured the biggest upset prize with her first round victory (541 points).  Arlene also shared the u/1400 prizes with Steve Wallace.  They also recorded scores of 2.5.

        Some make-up games pushed completion of the event back to October 22.  The event started its five round run at club on September 17 with 20 participants. The cross table link can be found on our Club Championship page (at left).


September 26-27


    Michael Cambareri, the top seed, swept to a perfect 5.0 score in winning this year's edition of the Eastern Washington Open played on September 26-27.  Second place went to newcomer Karl Reuter, a Gonzaga University student playing in his first USCF-rated event.  Karl took first prize in Class D/Unrated, while second place in that class went to two other newcomers, high school sophomore Alex Nguyen and Ernest Tinajero, each of whom scored 3.0. 

    Youthful players dominated the event, particularly two who were playing on the top boards on Sunday.  Braxton Casey upset Class A players the first two rounds enroute to tying for the second Class D prize and claiming the biggest upset prize.  His only loss was suffered on board two in the last round.  Savanna Naccarato, a recent high school graduate, played a very strong event and only lost in the fourth round on board two during a time scramble.  She scored 3.5 to win the Class C prize.

      The Class A prizes were shared by Brad Bodie (lost to Cambareri in fourth round), Nikolay Bulakh, and James Stripes, each of whom scored 3.5.  Mark Anderson (who lost to Cambareri in round five) also scored 3.5 to win the Class B first prize, while second prize in that section (2.5) was shared by John Frostad, Mitch Kilayko, and Travis Miller.  Second place in Class C went to Sam Comi (3.0). 

    There were a total of 30 players entered in this year's event.  The cross table can be seen on our Eastern Washington Open page (link at left).

Fifth round action in the EWO (photos compliments of Annette Weyland):



Braxton Casey records his move against Nikolay Bualkh                    Ron Weyland (r) ponders his move against Michael Hasuike



.                            Michael Cambareri on the move against Mark Anderson.




Spokane Falls Open


    James Stripes won this year's edition of  the Spokane Falls Open which attracted 30 players, many of them new to the sport.  Stripes won all four games he played and enjoyed his "old man's bye" on Saturday night.  He stopped top seed Steve Merwin on board one in Sunday morning's fourth round, and then defeated Kairav Joshi (also 3.5 by way of a Saturday evening bye) in round five.  Merwin and Brian Wood of Columbus, Ohio finished second with scores of 4.0.  Woods suffered his only loss to Joshi in round four, but secured the u/1800 prize for efforts.  The winners of the u/1600 prize, with scores of 3.0, were Garrett Casey, Sam Comi, and Mitch Kilayko.  The u/1400 & unrated section was won by newcomer Anand Wadikar (3.5), who secured a provisional rating of 1803 for his first tourney! Second place (3.0) in the section was shared by Braxton Casey and Ron Weyland.  Braxton also won the prize for biggest upset, with his 353 point victory edging Sam Comi's 346 point upset!

    The event was played in conjunction with the City Championship match between Nikolay Bulakh and challenger Michael Cambareri at the Schoenberg Center at Gonzaga. 

James Stripes (left) vs. Kairav Joshi in round five:


Photos by David Griffin


Final round action.  Garrett Casey (left) v. Ron Kirsch (foreground), with Brian Woods v. Mark Anderson (background).



City Championship


    Michael Cambareri is the new City Champion, defeating defending champion Nikolay Bulakh in another down to the wire match reminiscent of their battle in 2014.  Each player won with white on the first day, and each won with black on the second day to tie the match at 2-2 and force a blitz play-off.  Michael won that event 3-2, with the white pieces winning each game.  The previous year saw Michael win the two Saturday games before Nikolay won the two Sunday games and then the ensuing play-off by a 3-2 score.  


New City Champion Michael Cambareri (photo by Dr. James Stripes)


         Club alum Steve Fabian has put in a lot of historical research and come up with a lengthy (32 page) history of Spokane chess from 1899 to present!  This well-researched article, written in the indomitable Fabian style, is found on our History page (link at left).  Contact information for Steve is at the end of the article, so if you have more insights or any  corrections, please feel free to write Steve or your editor to share your thoughts and contribute to the telling of the club's story.  The club owes an immense thanks to Steve for all the effort he put into writing this article.