[imagefield_assist|fid=5549|preset=frontpage_200x200|title=|desc=|link=none|origsize=|align=left|width=200|height=200]The 2010 Super Team Championship was well-attended this year, with 17 teams vying for a nice prize and team glory. My team was made of my son Spencer, CCSCSL employee and tournament director Ray “Ray Ray” Kurczynski, and yours truly. We were ranked 2nd behind the team comprised of Doug Eckert, Bob Holliman, and Nick Karlow.
The first round went as expected, with the higher ranked teams winning easily. Round 2 was a bit tougher, as some top teams were nicked for draws, including the top-ranked team, and our team, the 2010 Super Team Champions. No, I am not getting ahead of myself, that was the name of our team!
I was not able to win against Joe Garnier, and Spencer lost to Isaiah Gadson. Ray was there for us, winning easily early on, so at least we stayed in contention with a drawn match. Round 3 was interesting as well, due to the top team, which also drew in round 2, as Holliman lost and Eckert drew, the top boards were occupied by the lowest ranked team (!!) and the solid team led by Kevin Cao. Cao and company won easily, 3-0, and looked to be favorites to walk away with the title. Our team was lucky to win this round, as Spencer hung a piece on move 7, but his opponent did not see 8.Qa4+ winning a loose bishop on b4, and the game ended peacefully. I won, but Ray was completely lost, and, somehow, was able to pull a win out of a completely lost game.
Round 4 saw the top seeds win, as Cao won against Eckert, but it was too little too late as Holliman and Karlow already secured victory. We were able to win our last round, with Spencer winning his first game and Ray drawing his first, as I won quickly. Ray and I finished with 3.5-0.5 each, and Spencer was key in the last round, winning a long endgame, a real team effort! We were lucky to win on tie breaks, and so our name was apropos after all!
The tournament was a lot of fun, and there were players from KC, Indiana, Illinois, and Kentucky! The team we beat in round 1 actually won the rest of its matches, so the competition was fierce. I expect over 20 teams next year, and more fun and more prizes!
The games for the U.S. Women’s and Junior Championships start July 10, so everyone should come down to the club the next few weeks and see some great chess!
Ben's 6/24/10 Lecture Including Game Analysis