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Draws on top boards during round 3 of Club Championship

[imagefield_assist|fid=3526|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]CCSCSL members have been following the games of our Resident GM Ben Finegold this week at the Spring SPICE cup in Lubbock, Tex., and his recent case of draw-itis seems to be spreading. The two top boards in tonight's pairings, Jim Voelker vs. Ken Thomas and Josh Frank vs. Richard Benjamin, ended in a draw.

Executive Director Tony Rich topped William Nesham and Mike Kummer won his game against Dan Coryea.

Paul Mechem scored a point against Paul Goddard tonight. Click Read More for cross tables and pairings.

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Ben's Blog: Spring Spice Cup - Rounds 1 and 5

[imagefield_assist|fid=3523|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]Another tough day and two more tough draws.  I was lucky in both games, as I stood worse for about 90% of the moves today!

IM Irina Krush and I played a crazy game, which started quietly, then, after she won a pawn, I got some good counterplay.  Irina was better, but, after we both missed some tactics, and both got lucky at various points, a draw was the logical result. Afterwards, we had a nice lunch at Applebee's (Is that possible?) although Irina's salad had too much dressing. It's nice to have a pleasant dining experience with your opponent after such a hard fought battle, and the feeling of camaraderie amongst the players here is great.

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Finegold and Krush draw in round 1 reschedule at SPICE

[imagefield_assist|fid=3522|preset=frontpage_200x200|title=|desc=|link=none|origsize=|align=left|width=200|height=200]GM Ben Finegold and IM Irina Krush played a long and hard-fought draw in a round 1 match that was rescheduled because Krush made a late arrival to the tourney. Finegold had the black pieces against a determined Krush, and the two fierce competitors slugged out a nail-biting draw.

As time was winding down, both players found themselves in time trouble relying only on their increment to save them. the game ended in a rook vs. rook draw, which leaves GM Finegold with a score of 2/4 and IM Krush a score of 1.5/4.

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Ben's Blog: Spring Spice Cup - Rounds 3 and 4

[imagefield_assist|fid=3521|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]A very tough day at the office.  Two long draws, and I struggled in each game.

I was slightly worse with black against IM Gergely Antal.  We drifted into time trouble, and I was able to equalize against inexact play. 

Gergely probably had a nice advantage somewhere, but after 33.Qe2? I should be equal or better.  I played badly in mutual time trouble and was lucky to draw.

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Finegold featured on ChessCafe, follow him live on

[imagefield_assist|fid=3520|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]Ben is in action today in Lubbock, Tex., at the Spring SPICE Cup. He is squaring off against IM Gergely Antal in round three. Ben has taken some time out of his busy schedule to post some pics to his personal Facebook site and ours as well. Check the photos from round one here:

Our Resident GM was recently featured on You can access part one of his interview by clicking the link here:

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Ben's Blog: Spring Spice Cup - Round 2 Report

[imagefield_assist|fid=3519|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]Today was quite boring from a chess point of view, as GM Julio Becerra and I played a snoozer of a game.  I prepared quite a while for Julio's Slav/Semi-Slav/a6 Slav, but, I decided to also do a little prep for his other openings, King's Indian and Gruenfeld. 

I prepared a line I have never played before, that I could do against any Nf6/g6 combination, but, unfortunately, Julio played solidly, and the game was equal throughout. Tomorrow there are two rounds, and I play black versus IM Gergely Antal in the morning, and white versus IM Dean Ippolito in the afternoon.


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Ben's Blog: Spring Spice Cup Begins

[imagefield_assist|fid=3518|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]Hello avid blog readers! The Spring Spice Cup starts today in beautiful Lubbock, TX.  The event is a ten-player RR, with possible GM and IM norms.  At the moment, the belief is 6 points will secure a GM norm, and, for Darwin Yang and Eric Hansen, the only FMs, each will need 4 points to earn an IM norm.

The event starts today at the beautiful campus of Texas Tech University.  The games will be played in the English building.  Opening ceremonies start today, March 13, 2010, at 1PM CST.  I had to think a bit about the "CST", as tonight we move the clocks forward an hour!


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ICC State Champion of Champions dates set

[imagefield_assist|fid=3517|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]The ICC State Champion of Champions tournament, a qualifier for the 2010 U.S. Championship, has been scheduled to start March 24 on the Internet Chess Club (ICC). The U.S. State Champion of Champions tournament pits state champions against one another in an online tournament. Missouri State Champion IM Michael Brooks will represent the CCSCSL's home state in the event.

The semifinals take place on March 30 and the finals will be held April 11. Last year, IM Sam Shankland won the online tournament to earn a bid to the 2009 U.S. Championship.

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Club Championship: Week 2 results

[imagefield_assist|fid=3515|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]The Club Championship is really heating up as local Expert Jim Voelker moves into clear first with a score of 2-0. His win tonight against Paul Mechem helped propel him into the lead.

With three rounds to go Richard Benjamin,  Josh Frank and Ken Thomas are right on his heels with scores of 1.5 each. Next week, Voelker will take on Thomas in a pivotal round three match-up. Frank and Benjamin will square off on board two. Stay tuned to the CCSCSL for updates throughout the week.

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Nakamura, Kamsky, 17 more confirmed for 2010 U.S. Championship

[imagefield_assist|fid=3514|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]SAINT LOUIS, March 10, 2010 -- Nineteen players have accepted invitations to the 2010 U.S. Championship, scheduled to be held at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis May 13-25. Four wild card spots and the winner of the Internet Chess Club (ICC) State Champion of Champions online tournament, all yet to be determined, will round out the 24-player field.

International Master Anna Zatonskih won an automatic bid to the 2010 U.S. Championship as the winner of the 2009 U.S. Women’s Championship, but had to decline because of prior commitments and familial obligations.

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