Sunday, April 13, 2008

Junior High Nationals-- At Least My Predictions Were Right

So the results were something of a let-down: third in open, 3rd or 4th in under 750, and I don't even know what in the other unders. I guess I'm disappointed, although not as much as I expected to be. Seems kinda stupid to let yourself truly be emotionally depressed about the results of children playing a board game. A couple of them played stupidly, and that bugs me, but one or two played well and worked hard, so I guess that evens things out. Angelica was the big star, to me at least-- she beat Vincent Zhang Saturday night in an exquisite good knight vs bad bishop ending. Sunday she played two experts and lost both but played for four hours each game and fought hard in each one.

OK, here are a few quiz positions for you from kids' games. Answers tomorrow-- I'm too lazy tonight.

White to move-- what's the best move and what's the evaluation? (Abadel, round 6)

Black to move-- what's the best move and what's the evaluation? (Rawn, rd 6)

Black to move-- best move? (Milo Pan- Davon)

White plays 1. g3. Why is this losing? (Najeebah - Caleb Deal)

Photos (coutesy of Greg Sciame, a teacher at my school)

Davon, Demetres, Markel
JFK Museum, Amani
JFK Museum
Pobo, Kevin, Myles
Rochelle, Najeebah, Alex
blitz tournment
Najeebah, Rochelle, Jonathan

after party in team room
Carlos, JieJing, Davon, Nicole

Danger: Keep All Children Away From Carousel.


Anonymous said...

great pics! are you going to high school nationals as well?

Elizabeth Vicary said...

Thanks. I am going to Atlanta, and also to Dallas for Girls' Nationals and Pittzburgh for Elementary

Anonymous said...

My amateur mind attempts your problems:

1. The queenside pawns are blocked; the e-pawn will get picked off by the bishop if it advances. So my first thought is to try to force a bishop trade with Be7. If black bites with ...Bxe7, Kxe7 allows the e-pawn to promote. But because of this, black will probably play ...Bc1, threatening to attack e7 from the other side. So white may be out of luck. Advancing the a-pawn after ...Bc1 seems to get white nowhere, unless black is foolish enough to answer a3 with ...b4. And come to think of it, why shouldn't black answer Be7 with ...Bb2, threatening to pick off the c3 pawn and promote his own c-pawn? Ergo, Bc1 Bc5 a3, and white may be lucky enough to draw.

2. ...g5 forces the two pawn groups apart and opens up the f-file, creating a back door for the c7 rook. Black is down a pawn but more mobile than before.

3. ...Qc2, planning ...Rh6+. If Bh5, then ...Qf5+ followed by ...Rxh5+ wins the bishop.

4. ...g4 lets black promote on the h-file. If hxg4, then ...h3; if gxh4, then ...gxh3.