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Chess Journalists of America (2016)

In the News

     (Norman, Oklahoma, 28 January 2017)  OCF Members in Round 2 action at the 3rd Norman Chess Festival.  On Board 1 (closest in this photo) Logan Zachare matches up against USCF Original Life Chess Master Advait Patel.   On Board 2 (next closest board) National Chess Master Daniel Ng (a Texan on temporary loan to the OU Chess Club) battles Chess Expert Joe Dean Veal.  On Board 3 (next closest board) Jared Ellis challenges National Chess Master Howard Zhong.  On Board 4 (furthermost board) Chibuzo Ilonze battles it out with Rick Case.  Patel, Veal, Ellis, and Zhong are all members of the Oklahoma Chess Team (their next RRSO match is against Texas on 29 April).  Photo by RRSO Official Photographer Cheng Zhong.  Graphics by OCF Webmaster Jim Hollingsworth.

Veal and Long Split
26th Annual OCF Holiday Open

     Stillwater, Oklahoma, 31 December 2016 (Oklahoma Chess Monthly).  Chess Experts Joe Dean Veal and James Long drew each other in the final round and topped a 29 player field with 3-12 points each, in the 26th annual OCF Holiday Open.  Jim Berry was Chief TD and he was assisted by Tom Braunlich.

     The players enjoyed a bit of history when Jim Berry told this story:  "Twenty-six years ago, my brother Frank (Berry) and I were told by many there is no way anyone would ever show for a chess tournament between Christmas and New Year."

     Jim was uncharacteristically quiet when asked if it was Texans who said that.  There will be a full report in the February OCM.

Zelnick Wins OCF Ladder Tournament

CHESS EXPERT DAVID ZELNICK     The OCF Ladder event, organized by the late Steve Wharry and played at the pace of one game per month from April through December 2016, finished with Expert David Zelnick (photo left) standing on the top rung. The games were played on the first Saturday of each month at the very slow pace of G/120+30spm. Dr. Michael Nugent was 2nd, and James Long defeated Chuck Johnson in the last round to claim the 3rd rung in a tournament that included 18 players overall, eight of which were rated over 2000.

     Normally a "ladder" event is a freeform challenge system, but in this case Steve adapted it for scheduled play. The prize system rewarded only wins, so this was a very hard-fought event and produced many interesting games. There is a full report in the December OCM.

National Master Howard Zhong
Texan Sara Brown
Champions of 2nd Norman Chess Festival

Date Time Stamp:  25 SEP 2016;  8:15 PM

     National Chess Master Howard Zhong scored 4-1/2 points for 1st Place in the 2nd Norman Chess Festival.  National Chess Master Daniel Ng (an OU Freshman from Texas) finished in 2nd Place with 4 points.

     Sarah Brown won the U-1700 Section with 4 points.  Her only setback came in Round 2 against 9-year-old Maxwell Barnes.

     Florian Helff, OU Chess Club President, organized, promoted and directed this event.  Matt Dalthorp was Chief Assistant Director.

     Chess 24 is broadcasting the top 2 boards for each round.  See their website:  Chess 24

National Master Howard Zhong and Mawell Barnes
Shine at 2nd Norman Chess Festival

Date Time Stamp:  25 SEP 2016;  2:00 AM

     National Chess Master Howard Zhong successfully defended with the black pieces against National Chess Master Daniel Ng (from Texas) in the 3rd round of the 2nd Norman Chess Festival.  They are tied for the lead in the A Section with 2-1/2 points each.

     9-year-old Maxwell Barnes crushed his first three opponents.  He leads the U-1700 Section with a perfect 3-0 score.

     Chess 24 is broadcasting the top 2 boards for each round.  See their website:  Chess 24

     Nine members of the State's top collegiate chess club, the OU Chess Club, are playing.  The Oklahoma Chess Team, World and Red River Champions, is also making a strong showing.

     The final two rounds will be played today (Sunday).

Chess Expert Joe Den Veal
New Oklahoma Chess Team Captain

By Victor Yaward, Chess Reporter

     Congratulations to new Oklahoma Chess Team Captain, Joe Dean Veal.  Joe is a Chess Expert and Local Tournament Director.  He is a veteran of six RRSO team matches with the most fanatical chess players in Texas (2003, 2004, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012).  Joe also volunteers as a Club Officer and Organizer for The Challengers Chess Club in Oklahoma City.

     All Oklahoma Chess Team members are requested to contact Joe and RSVP for the annual RRSO Victory Dinner.

     As all serious chess players know, the REAL Red River Shootout is a series of annual team matches between the most serious chess players in Oklahoma and Texas.  The next match is Saturday, April 29th in Davis, Oklahoma.

     Check out the RRSO website for more details:

Life Master Tom Braunlich
New OCF Editor

By Victor Yaward, Chess Reporter

USCF ORIGINAL LIFE CHESS MASTER TOM BRAUNLICH - OKLAHOMA STATE CHESS CHAMPION (2006, 2009, 2011) - OKLAHOMA CHESS MONTHLY EDITOR SINCE 2016      Stillwater, Oklahoma, Oklahoma Chess Monthly.  At the State Championship in Tulsa, OCF President Jim Berry annnounced Life Chess Master Tom Braunlich (photo left) will fill the vacant OCF Editor position left open by the tragic loss of his brother, Frank Berry.  Tom's first order of business will to be create and serve as Editor of the new Oklahoma Chess Monthly (OCM).  OCM will be a downloadable PDF available in a new "Members Only" section being jointly developed by Tom and OCF webmaster Jim Hollingsworth.  The new section will also offer online games and downloadable Chessbase files (the complete Okie Database and updates).  Everything is on schedule for an exciting November 1st kickoff.

     Tom Braunlich's background and experience makes him exceptionally qualified for this new responsibility.  He has a degree in Journalism from Oklahoma State University (1981).  He is a frequent contributor for Chess Life, Chess Life Online and the Oklahoma Chess Monthly.  He is author of the penetrating and sagacious article Scholastics and the Soul of Chess.  He was recognized as USCF Organizer of the Year (2008).  He was also USCF Volunteer of the Month (July 2008).  He is an experienced USCF Tournament Director.  And he was Chief Organizer of the Frank K. Berry U.S. Chess Championships (2008).

Chess Expert Chuck Johnson
Wins 2016 Oklahoma State Championship Title

By USCF Life Master Tom Braunlich, OCF Editor

CHESS EXPERT CHUCK JOHNSON - OKLAHOMA STATE CHESS CHAMPION (2016) - 5-0 IN RRSO MATCH VICTORIES OVER OPPONENTS FROM THE OTHER STATE      Tulsa, Oklahoma, Oklahoma Chess Monthly.  The 71st Oklahoma FIDE Open and State Championship (Frank K Berry and Steve Wharry Memorial) and Oklahoma State Chess Championship was held September 3-4 in Tulsa.

     Expert Chuck Johnson (photo left) won the championship event impressively 5-0 including a 4th round upset of 2313-rated Daniel Ng, a newly-arrived student at OU from Houston, TX.  Johnson also had wins over Tom Patton (2111) and Jason Wawrzaszek (2053), gaining about 80 rating points.  Congrats Chuck!  Clear second place was won by veteran Christopher Dooley with 4-1.  Notable also in the Open section was the performance of youngsters Sheena Zeng (1868), who was undefeated against strong opposition, and Sho Glashausser (1836) and Kiana Hajiarbabi (1837); all from Kansas.

     OU freshman Jeremiah Buenger (pronounced "Binger") from Wisconsin won the Reserve section 5-0.  Veteran Okie Bruce Wells won the Reserve title with clear 2nd place at 4-1.  Several youngsters also performed well in this section and I was particularly impressed with 9-year-old Maxwell Barnes from OKC, who won his first three games and whose rating already is approaching 1400.

     OCF AnnouncementsJim Berry and Tom Braunlich announced at this tournament new plans for the OCF in the wake of the passing of Frank Berry this Summer.  These new plans for the OCF will be detailed in a separate announcement soon on this website.

     The full tournament report will appear in the first issue of the Oklahoma Chess Monthly (OCM), which is a new online chess news publication by OCF (part of the above-mentioned announcements).  The target date for the first issue is November 1.

YUGE Turnout in Tulsa
at the
71st Oklahoma FIDE Open
Frank Berry and Steve Wharry Memorial
and Oklahoma State Championship

Date Time Stamp:  04 SEP 2016;  2:00 AM

     The Open Section is led by NM Daniel Ng and Expert Chuck Johnson with 3 points each.  They will play in Round 4.

     Two youngsters, including 9-year-old Maxwell Barnes from OKC and Cael Province from Kansas, lead the Reserve (U1700) section with perfect scores along with Jeremiah Buenger of Wisconsin.  Max is a student of Joe Veal and very sharp young man.

     55 players are competing in the event.  TDs are Jim Berry and Tom Braunlich

     Check this website later for Updates

Date Time Stamp:  03 SEP 2016;  4:00 PM

     55 serious chess players, from five states, are battling it out in Tulsa.

  • 28 in the Open
    • Four guys from OU are playing, including a 2300 player
    • The Lawton Chess Club brought a car load.
  • 27 in the Reserve

     Check this website later for Standings