Sunday, February 13, 2011

puzzles for PS 11

1. Anthony (white) has been studying the Max Lange, and here he played an exciting "318 theory" sacrifice to generate play.

2. This is his position a few moves later. How did white force checkmate?

3. Zion McKenzie was white. What should he have done?

4. Carlos Tapia (white) found a way to win a piece here. 

5. Later in the same game, Carlos finds a nice tactic to win even more material and simplify the position.

6. 318 alumnus and assistant coach Pobo Efekoro showed us a beautiful tactic he played against Ashanti Murray at the city championship 2 weeks ago. White to move, above.

7. Spike Smith was thrilled to win the Junior High Novice section for the first time. He is black in the above position, and his opponent failed to find the best move with his Nc3. Where should white have gone?

8. Same game, a few moves later. What is black's most crushing line?

9. Ariel Peguero was white in the above position. How could his opponent have won a pawn?

10. This time it's Ariel's turn for a tactic. White to move.

11. Kevin was black in the above position. How can he set up an UNSTOPPABLE CHECKMATE?

how's everybody doing?

I'm good. My life is pretty much totally about work from September to May every year. I work from 7:30-4:15, come home, grade some papers, eat dinner, watch the daily show, read, and go to bed by 9, Monday - Saturday. Sunday I either see my mom, or we see Jonathan's parents, I usually do some more work, post the positions from yesterday's tournament, and I try to do something with Jonathan. I'm very happy, but man, it's a lot of work. I've been really enthusiastic about working with some of the 6th graders this year, and that's kept me energized, but I had a rough week. I need to read a book on positive behavior management.

I am excited about some reservations I have. Normally, I'm not really a foodie. I like fresh, healthy food, but I don't care enormously about the upper ranges of tasty. But NYC Restaurant Week has been extended through Feb 27, through my midwinter week-off break, which frees me to take advantage of the attractive Lunch Option. Many of the fanciest restaurants only participate at lunch, plus it's cheaper. Tuesday we are eating at Nobu and Wednesday at Le Cirque!

I decided to take 4 kids to Amateur Team East. Shaun Smith was kind enough to transfer an extra reservation to me, and so I'm bringing four awesome, awesome children with me: Randy, Kenneth, Carlos and Kevin. These four kids have been working so hard recently on chess-- I don't think the last two have missed a single day of early morning class, chess lunch, afterschool chess club, and Saturday tournaments all year (!!). Kenneth has gone from 1459 to 1730 since September, Carlos from 1093 to 1402, and Kevin from 0 to 1319. I wasn't all that pumped about USATE before this (although my team should be fun-- Laura, Abby, and Alanna), but now I'm so happy thinking about how great the kids will do and how much fun they're going to have.

We're taking a bus to Junior High Nationals in Ohio! It's an ugly 11 hour trip, but it means we'll get to take 55 people (4 adults, 51 kids), plus a small group will fly, so despite the budget problems, we will have a full contingent of 58-60 kids there, all the ones who have earned it! I'm not counting on winning any under sections, but we'll put the top 5 or 6 in the K-9 and then like 35 kids in the K-8 open from 1250-1800. I'm really looking forward to this. (and to it being over, so I can regain a toehold on normalcy)

1. Anthony played 7. Bxf7+ Kxf7 8. Ng5+ Kf8 9. Qxg4 d6 and they reached the second diagram.

2. The game finished 10. Qf4+ Kg8 11. Qf7#

3. Zion missed 1. Nb3 Qb6 2. Na4

4. Carlos played 10. Ne4, and black cannot hold both the Bc5 and Nd5. the game continued 10...Qf8 11. Bxd5 Bg4 12. Nxc5 Qxc5, and they reached the position in the fifth question.

5. The game continued 13. Bxf7! Kxf7 14. Ng5+ Kg8 15. Qxg4 (amazingly,15. Qb3 is even better).

6. Pobo played 1. Qh5+ Kd8 2. Ba5!! Qxa5 3. Nxe6#

7. White should play 1. Nxd5, since 1...exd5 2. exd5 regains the piece. Instead, he retreated with 1. Nd1, after which black captures on e4 and is up two monster pawns.

8. Spike can play 1....Qa5+ since both  2. Kf1 Bb5! and 2. c3 Bb5 3. Qc2 d3! are fantastic for black.

9. 1...Nxa2+ 2. Kd2 (2. Nxa2?? Qxe4; 2. Kb1?? Nxc3 3. bxc3 Qxe4) Qxe4 3. Nxe4 Rfb8 4. b4 Rb4 is slightly better for black.

10. 1. Qc6! traps the knight. It's better than 1. Qb7 d5!

11. 1...a5 cuts off the white king's escape and threatens both 2...Rc3 and 2...b5.


Bazooby said...

I'm jealous about your food adventure - Nobu was featured on TV the other day and it looked awesome!

Good luck with your chess events.

Anonymous said...

I wish I could be your student, my rating has been stuck for years.

Anonymous said...

Nice puzzles, Elizabeth


es_trick said...

I agree with Anon 1:22 and Cecile.