One hundred and forty chess players recently dueled in the cafeteria of Killip Elementary School to crown the best of each section.
Individual players from Marshall Magnet, Knoles, DeMiguel, Chinle Jr High School, FJA, Sinagua Middle School, Mount Elden Middle School, Kinsey, NPA, homeschool, Puente de Hohzo, Coconino High School and Killip competed on more than 70 boards to crown this year’s champions.
An early matchup in round 2 between Tanner Muscarella (7th grade, homeschool), last year’s champion and Zach Casali (9th grade, CHS), the highest rated player entering the tournament, was won by Zach. In the third round, Zach and Tyler Long (7th grade, SMS), longtime Killip and SMS champion player, came away with a draw. Also in the third round, Jaiden Smith (3rd grade, Killip) upset D’ontye Anderson (4th grade, Killip), Killip’s highest-rated player entering the tournament. It was in the fifth round in which Jaiden drew with Zach that made Tyler the champion of this year’s Killip Chess Klassic with 4.5 points out of 5. Zach was second with 4.0 points and Jaiden took home the third-place trophy with 3.5 points.
This match came down to the last round, where Jeremy John Jr. (8th grade, SMS), Anthony Nez (5th grade, Killip) and Daysi Lopez (4th grade, Killip) all had a perfect 4.0 score. Jeremy won against Anthony and took first place with a perfect 5.0, while Anthony came in second. William Parsons (8th grade, SMS) beat Daysi giving William fifth place and Daysi fourth. Nathan Tso (4th grade, Killip) moved into third. Also receiving 4.0 points were Karen Lopez (4th grade, Killip), sixth place, and Austin Kee (4th grade, Killip), seventh place.
The fourth round found only two players at a perfect 4.0 points, with Gael Robles (4th grade, Killip) and Hudson Bedford (4th grade, Kinsey) facing off. Gael won and took home the first place trophy. Ryan Kee (2nd grade, Killip) was second and third went to Hudson. Also doing well was Jeremiah Bendle (4th grade, Kinsey), 4th place and fifth place went to Ayame Palmer (5th grade, DeMiguel).
Robert Hamblin (8th grade, CJH) won the biggest upset with a 456 rating point difference and Logen Mason (6th grade, NPA) won the second biggest upset with a 430 rating point difference.
The nonmember sections were broken into two by grades.
Gabe Lopez (8th grade, NPA) beat out Matthew Neve (6th grade, SMS) in the final round for first place in the 4th – 12th grade nonmember section, Matthew taking third. While Violet Chacon (8th grade, SMS) won against Logan Dean (6th grade, SMS) in an earlier round, giving Violet second place and Logan fourth.
In the K-3rd grade nonmember section, Andrew Sweeten (second grade, homeschool) beat both Dalani Hanson (1st grade, PdH) and Mariano Rivera (1st grade, PdH) for first place. Dalani came in second and Mariano third.
Both Gabe and Andrew won a free one-year membership to the United States Chess Federation.